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National and local branding as a regional development tool

September 11, 2018

National and local branding as a regional development tool

Swapping hyperprofits for initiative

The challenges faced by Russia become more complex every year, requiring changes in the conceptual approach to developing economic potential. The latest round of sanctions may be restricting the growth of the Russian economy, but it is also creating the conditions for the introduction of initiatives and solutions that were previously not attempted because of the dominance of dull routine and the hyperprofits pouring into the budget from commodity sales.

In a restrictive environment, the key factors of success are consolidation, communication, and the ability to find compromises when working on state tasks and achieving strategic targets. Today these words should be a mantra for any manager, not only in the public sector but also in private business. The success of the national economy should be one of the main aims to which everyone is committed.

The development of national branding and t he creation of a national communications strategy aimed at consolidating the efforts and resources of the state, business, public organizations, and individual Russians can be powerful drivers of regional development and regional business.

A unique driving force to promote Russia on the Asia-Pacific regional market

Today it is evident that national branding, like any other tool, demands a totally new approach based on the creation of an environment which shapes the potential and conditions for growth in manufacturing, exports, tourism, culture, human capital, and investment in regional entities. These tools should not only act as conductors for the support measures offered by development institutions, but should also compensate for key competences in the field of marketing and communications.

Here, the Russian Far East is a unique region, capable of being not only an independent national brand but also the prime driving force for promoting Russia on Asia-Pacific markets. However, it should be understood that in today’s information space, the opportunities and content in a single region, even one as rich as the Far East, are insufficient to shape a powerful information agenda that is visible to end users and potential partners.

The disproportionate opportunities and potential of regions require a special approach and the development of tools that will compensate for these. This requires the consolidation of efforts as part of a single strategy, as previously mentioned. This strategy must be capable not only of helping regions which are lagging behind but also of bringing them up to the level of successful regions through dissemination of the best and most effective practices, the use of IT to compensate for staff shortages (primarily with regard to translation into foreign languages, software development, branding, marketing and other specialities which facilitate the digitalization of work processes), an increase in regional businesses’ awareness of state support measures, and also through an increase in investor awareness of state measures to support the localization and transfer of business.

A universal aggregator

All of these goals can be achieved by the creation of the ‘Made in Russia’ national brand, which is based on practical and useful tools to support regions in marketing, branding, communications and IT.

The ‘Made in Russia’ brand has become a universal aggregator and a platform for providing regions with a whole range of services aimed at economic development, guaranteeing broad coverage, and attracting an additional audience consisting of potential partners and consumers. This non-standard approach transforms the national brand into a genuine development tool, guarantees results in financial terms, and makes it possible for regions to supplement it with a wide range of ideas and content based on the unique potential of our people, their achievements, and their multicultural identity. This approach is capable of becoming one of the principal elements in achieving Russia’s national aims."

FIRST PERSON

Andrey Nikitin, Governor of Novgorod Region

«The development of regional branding is an integral part of unlocking the manufacturing, export, cultural and tourism potential of any region. Our successful presentation of the ‘Novgorodian Rus’ brand during the ‘Made in Russia’ session at SPIEF 2018 has provided a firm basis for the future development of the brand. I am sure that the ideas embodied in the brand and our region’s great cultural and tourism potential will have a positive influence not only on the economy but also on the general competitiveness of Novgorod Region. As one of the pilot regions of the ‘Made in Russia’ project, we also support and see the necessity of consolidating the efforts of regions, business, and the state to establish a single promotion strategy and vector of development, capable of improving the effectiveness of the work that is already underway.»

Anton Alikhanov, Governor of Kaliningrad Region

«We calculate that our involvement in the ‘Made in Russia’ project will not only be a new channel for promoting our business but will also provide real tools that will have a positive impact on economic development. Kaliningrad Region is a special region of Russia. The development of its own identity based on its geographical position and industrial and cultural potential can be used as an effective promotional tool. We also support the idea that there is a need to consolidate the efforts of the state, the regions, and business to achieve national targets in promoting Russia’s manufacturing, export, cultural, and tourism potential, as well as its human capital.»

Kirill Ilichev, General Director, Moscow Export Centre

«Moscow helps to drive the development of the entire country. ‘Made in Moscow’ is the flagship brand of the national ‘Made in Russia’ brand, created on the basis of the perception of the nation as a whole. Our overall objective is to expand non-commodity exports and increase the competitiveness of Russian products. The Moscow Export Centre is already successfully proving that Moscow manufacturing can produce competitive noncommodity exports for external markets. We are delighted to see that a systemic approach to collaborative interaction between the state and business is now being discussed and we are grateful to our colleagues for their support. We are also pleased to see that work on a common national communications strategy is gathering momentum. The national interest comes first and developing its own identity will always be a priority for any nation.»

Alexander Kocherov, General Director, Gzhel Association

«Gzhel is one of Russia’s most important cultural brands and is also rightly considered to be a traditional Russian folk craft. We heartily support and acknowledge the importance of the state’s efforts to develop regional branding, including the registration and legal protection of trademarks according to place of origin. The folk craft industry today is underrated, but we consider that its potential, including for export, is capable not only of giving a boost to the economic potential of the regions, but also of becoming one of the most important ways of promoting Russia, preserving its originality, traditions, and culture. We are pleased to be part of the ‘Made in Russia’ project and to contribute to its ‘soft power’ for promoting our country’s manufacturing, export, tourism, and cultural potential.»

Text: Mikhail SADCHENKOV, General Director, ‘Made in Russia’
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