Today cities are in strong competition for companies, tourists, and most of all talents. In order to differentiate one city from another, place marketers increasingly focus on establishing the city as a brand and adopt marketing techniques in order to identify competitors and analyze the impact of their brand image. Thus, the authors provide an analysis technique for quantifying the competitive structure between cities and their perceived differences in the most important image dimensions, with an approach based on a combination of network analysis and an individualized conjoint procedure. Therefore, this article reports a large-scale empirical study with German talents (N=. 1006) for the competitive environment of the 15 largest German cities and explores for the first time the use of city image dimensions in monetary terms. Additionally, it compares the two largest German cities (Berlin and Hamburg) using these dimensions and shows the gap between the city image perception of residents and non-residents.

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Cities: the international journal of urban policy and planning
Erasmus School of Economics

Zenker, S, Eggers, F, & Farsky, M. (2013). Putting a price tag on cities: Insights into the competitive environment of places. Cities: the international journal of urban policy and planning, 30(1), 133–139. doi:10.1016/j.cities.2012.02.002