Everyone knows the usual sum up of big country capitals or biggest cities you need to have travelled to. Just check any perfume brand packaging: London, New York, Tokio, Milan, Paris, Shanghai. It’s more difficult to be a less populous country capital like Amsterdam (No.2 on Lonely Planet hit list for 2013), Lisbon, Ottawa or Vienna. Let alone a non capital bigger city like Hamburg; but what a fantastic city it is!
Culinary City Marketing?
Hamburg, a city culinarily mocked a lot, because of a delicacy made big by the golden arches. I wonder if that was the first piece of culinary city marketing, but thinking about the Singapore Sling and Peking Duck I am not sure that’s true. It could be a very effective way to market your city and get it connected to something you can eat or drink. something many consumers are pretty passionate about. Maybe there should be a list called the 7 Culinary Wonders of the World (which – of course – is something you can Google and find, although not coupled with cities).
Don Draper meets Trent Reznor
Hamburg has succeeded in combining rawness of a big harbour city and the sleekness of the rich and famous. The first personified by the area around the Reeperbahn (the Hamburg red light district) with its rugged underground clubs and sometimes referred to as die sündige Meile (the sinful mile). The second experienced when going to clubs like 20UP and East where the Hamburg beautiful (and sometimes not so young) reside @night time. The named clubs are examples of venues you’d normally only see in some capital cities or in the likes of Sydney and Cape Town. It’s the combination of grandeur, trendiness with a hotel, restaurant, lounge and bar under one roof, in the case of East including an outside area. Thus keeping consumers in from pre dinner drinks to late at night. It truly is a total brand experience creating. Although I must say I missed the Asian style beer such as Asahi or Tiger to really complete it.
Apart from Hospitality…
… the Hamburg city brand delivers a lot of other great stuff to do and see. Some examples:
-Deichtor Hallen, for international art and fotografie.
-Speicherstadt, the largest timber-pile founded warehouse district in the world.
-Fishmarkt St. Pauli area, only open on Sunday morning from 4:30AM-9:30AM.
-Hamburger Kunsthalle, a great museum that hosts paintings from 14th century to contemporary art including Dutch and Flemish masters, but also Renoir for example.
-U-434, a Russian submarine museum, a real relic to Soviet times.
-and for those who want to smell (the scent of) an A&F store in front of which people are still standing in line (in stead of being shut down). Scent marketing still impresses me, was very hot in 2010 and is one of the strongest way of emotion adding by a brand. I honestly smelled Fierce (again!) before I noticed the store.
oh yeah: use Stay.com and download the app and a free offline city map to find your way easily
All in all I was really impressed by Hamburg, as a brand. It has characteristics many brands – both cities and products – would be jealous of. Thus Hamburg attracts many different people, visitors, business men, tourists, consumers, tradesmen, workers. And bringing them all together in this true melting pot. Its combination of various characters is stunning because it still feels natural.
Because there aren’t many brands that are tough, stylish and sexy? Well, I know of one course? Bond, James Bond. Still going strong in Skyfall.