A Case Study on City Branding: Copenhagens' Housing Market

Christoffer Holm & Joachim Dyssell

Student thesis: Master thesis


This master thesis is exploring City Branding. We will investigate if there is any influence on a City as a mother-brand by her sub-brands and their surrounding communications, and to what extent this influence may have.
This thesis treats relevant brand theory with the purpose of rightfully categorising the City of Copenhagen as a brand. In this particular study, the mother-brand is the City of Copenhagen itself, and the sub-brand is recognised as the housing market within the city of Copenhagen. To explore this we will utilise a broad range of data, including interviews of consumers, consumer communication on social media, as well as articles written in regard to the housing market of Copenhagen.
Throughout this study, interviews were used in order to determine the existing discourse related to both the Copenhagen housing market and Copenhagen as a city. This is done in order to define the image of Copenhagen among consumers and to explore to which extent, if any, there is a gap existing between the vision provided by the City Council and any image a consumer may hold.
In order to understand to which extend the media sets the agenda for public opinion, the research analyses a large amount of articles published within the last five years. The purpose of which is to get a better understanding of the origin of consumer opinion, and how such opinions arise.
The thesis has concluded that there exists a negative opinion regarding the housing market in Copenhagen among consumers. The thesis also found that Copenhagen has a very strong brand, which indicates that there is a tendency towards a doppelgänger brand image. Because of the bad reputation of the Copenhagen housing market, the thesis concludes that there is a gap between the strategic vision of Copenhagen’s housing market and its consumers image. This gap can potentially have a negative impact on the future development of the city with regards to attracting human resources.
Therefore, the thesis concludes that a bad reputation of the sub-brand influences the reputation of the mother-brand. As a result, this dissertation is highlighting the necessity for city brands to properly activate and engage their sub-brands. This may be possible by using principles within stakeholder engagement theory.

EducationsMSc in Business Administration and Organizational Communication, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2020
Number of pages151