The green branding of Hong Kong: visitors’ and residents’ perceptions
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AbstractPurpose: This paper aims to connect green spaces with city branding by introducing a proposed Green (Resource) Brand Hexagon (GBH). Design/methodology/approach: This study empirically tested the principles of the GBH with samples of Hong Kong residents (n = 301) and visitors (n = 395). Surveys were carried out to investigate the perceptions of the 23 elements in the GBH by both respondent groups. Findings: A comparison of the results via factor analysis identified two green brand structures preferred by local residents (a brand pentagon) and by visitors (a brand square). The findings suggest different associations of green resource elements in their brand perceptions, which were partly reflected in the governmental Brand Review exercise in Hong Kong in 2008. Inter-group differences in the ranking of GBH’s elements also indicate a knowledge gap between visitors and residents. Research limitations/implications: The modification process of the GBH from Anholt’s City Brand Hexagon framework involved researchers’ interpretations and understanding of green resources in Hong Kong; it inevitably produced some degree of subjectivity. The working definition of “green resources” in this study perceptually excluded certain features in public parks, such as the geological landscapes and beaches that are, in principle, part of the Hong Kong Geopark. Originality/value: The findings of this paper offer an indicative green brand framework for destination marketers and brand managers whose cities enjoy attractive green resources. The ratings of GBH’s elements provide useful references for local brand management through an understanding of strong green brand attributes and structures by local residents and visitors. The inter-group comparison of the green brand structures also informs policymakers and city marketers about the divergent associations of brand elements for possible brand extension. Finally, the results are also very beneficial because they provide an opportunity for regional green brand development.
Acceptance Date04/09/2016
All Author(s) ListChan C. S., Marafa L.
Journal nameJournal of Place Management and Development
Volume Number9
Issue Number3
Pages289 - 312
LanguagesEnglish-United Kingdom
KeywordsCity branding, Green branding, Green resources, Hong Kong

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