Last July I wrote about the city of Toronto's efforts to find a brand for itself, as immediate and ubiquitous as the "I (heart) NY" campaign we are all familiar with. The result was Toronto Unlimited, a $4 million CDN campaign that emphasized the city's openness, opportunity, and transformative powers. Where the campaign sought to emphasize possibility, complexity, and choice, detractors found it unclear, unfocused, and corporate. Others questioned the need or practicality of a branding effort for a global city like Toronto.
Melissa Aronczyk is a graduate student at NYU who wrote the fascinating Toronto Star article covering the city's faltering efforts at place branding, who has been kind enough to share the article in its entirety:
Through interviews with marketing professionals, tourism promoters, academics and others, Aronczyk presents a thorough picture of the various players who have stakes in such a campaign, and their views on the nascent specialty of place branding.
See the Toronto Unlimited promotional video.
See Toronto Unlimited posters.
And, as a bonus, a citizen counters the Toronto Unlimited campaign with his own, here.