“There are many ways Dumaguete City can market its products and services,” says Architect Ned Carlos, director of the United Architects of the Philippines (UAP)- Dumaguete Chapter. “Perhaps the most powerful is via Visual Branding. When a city focuses on creating and enhancing its visual brand, it shifts its energy away from selling towards communicating.”
We are already in the midst of a new age in which concepts, ideas and images—not things—are the tangible items of value! Branding strategies are designed to communicate a city’s identity, values, lifestyle, vision, or mission. Rather than sell a thing or product, innovative cities today establish and promote their brand which can be a concept, an idea or an image.
“Buildings, interiors and objects, when they are well designed, communicate concepts, ideas and images,” adds the design director of the Dumaguete Citybased design studio.
“Dumaguete City has already been at the center of literature, culture, learning and the visual arts in the Visayas for decades. We only have to harness what good design can do. Good design touches mood, springs information, enables daily life, amuses and motivates people.”
When a city uses Design to create and enhance brand, it takes lead of its power to quickly and believably communicate identity, values, lifestyle, and vision to a broad audience.
In essence, all cities, including Dumaguete City, need design and architecture to do tourism, but smart cities use architecture and design to add value to their bottom line. Cities that use architecture and design strategically have raised their profit margins, competed more successfully, enhanced brand equity, educated and enthused their locales, clients and tourists. Some have even influenced culture and created extraordinary buzz in the process!