What prompted this post was my most recent trip to Chicago. While this wasn’t my first time to the “Windy City,” this time in particular reinforced an idea I had been pondering for quite a while.
As a traveler, I enjoy taking in new cities and other foreign destinations by venturing off the tourist’s road. I try to have meals where the locals eat, venture to where they congregate. Overall l try to experience how they live their daily routines, because this is genuine. By doing this, I gain a certain amount of understanding, appreciation, and respect for their culture.
As a marketer, I can take this same philosophy to gain insights into individual lifestyles. By asking local residents to tell me, or better yet, show me their city l get a rare treat . In my experience, no two tours are ever the same. The way they articulate the history, appreciate the culture(s) or select the things that they feel, embody the essence or spirit of their home is very personal. It allows me to share in their individual experiences by leveraging the city as a means to unlock their story. I find it a most gracious gift one can provide to a visitor, and I hold it in very high esteem. It gives me a deeper understanding of human behaviour, and as I continue to refine my thoughts on the different dimensions that people use to define themselves a strong barometer.
Some don’t like the term “personal branding,” but l find it hard not to use this label, as it so clearly characterizes what people do. Whether it is representation of their city through the unconditional support of fans to their local sports franchise i.e. sports apparel, commitment to the team through rituals during games. Or it may even take the form of loyalty being shown by patrons to a long-held restaurant or other establishment. These elements help define someone, and are part of their unique story. The story of themselves told through the love of their city. This statement leads me to believe that, “a city may have one pulse, but many hearts.”
Share yours often…