Can a city communicate? Bradford as a corporate brand

Myfanwy Trueman (Bradford University School of Management, Bradford, UK)
Mary Klemm (Bradford University School of Management, Bradford, UK)
Axele Giroud (Bradford University School of Management, Bradford, UK)

Corporate Communications: An International Journal

ISSN: 1356-3289

Publication date: 1 December 2004


This exploratory research examines how corporate communications can influence stakeholder perceptions to enhance or detract from the city as a brand. It uses the UK city of Bradford as a case study and adopts theoretical concepts of product and corporate branding. Balmer's AC2ID test of corporate identity is applied to identify gaps in the City's official communications strategy, revealing conflicting messages between local government policy and different stakeholder groups. This analysis points to the need for positive visual evidence of change, such as an improved built environment in the city centre. The analysis may have value for policy‐makers in the UK and elsewhere who seek to improve community and stakeholder relationships. This research may also help to promote an honest approach towards branding cities as well as providing the potential for an enhanced brand value.



Trueman, M., Klemm, M. and Giroud, A. (2004), "Can a city communicate? Bradford as a corporate brand", Corporate Communications: An International Journal, Vol. 9 No. 4, pp. 317-330.

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Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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