I chose to study branding and brand management in relation to tourism through my design management course. I am pursuing this as I have prior interest in the mechanics behind branding (ie. logo design, graphic design in context to brand strategy) through my previous course at university. I have already been attracted to the tourism industry and my freelance illustrations created for clients are nearly always focused upon tourism related themes or destinations. It seems a natural progression to learn more about the driving factors behind tourism marketing, place branding and destination branding within the context of this course. I have so far found it incredible interesting to learn about the underlying theories of place and destination branding and how they have been affected in the recent years with the rise of social media. This has been an area of interest within the reading for me and I have noticed apparent gaps in researching specific demographics and their use of social media when traveling and its impact on a destination’s brand. I think that managers in this industry will have to become experts in this area and stay in front of trends and developments in social media to maintain a strong and effecting marketing strategy.
Recently I began my Masters study in Design Management (DM) at the University of Southampton, Winchester School of Art. Tasked with defining this very broad spectrum of theory and application, I have developed a working definition to fit my personal use and perspective on the subject. Interested mostly in design houses that offer branding, marketing strategy and design for commercial art, I choose to view DM through a lens that most appropriately addresses this area. Thus, I believe that DM could be defined through the study and implementation of design theory and research in areas involving the development and continuation of brand identity, client needs and customer interaction. A proper design manager should be capable of researching and working towards the most effective consumer-based solutions to the visual application of design within the commercial art field.