Leeds consultancy Thompson is to develop a brand identity for the city of Leeds, after winning a three-way pitch against Poulter Partners and Brahm. The group will unveil a logo and strapline for the city in March 2005.
The branding project is being driven by the Leeds City Image Task Group, which launched a year ago as an umbrella organisation that aims to bring together the various marketing initiatives taking place in the city.
It will launch Marketing Leeds next year to house all branding activity and to drive and capitalise on the city’s recent growth.
‘Leeds has won a number of accolades in recent years, from best place to live to favourite city in Britain,’ says Kairen Brown, project manager of the task group. ‘Our vision is to transform the national and international profile for Leeds.’
Thompson is now conducting research among opinion-formers and city-dwellers to pinpoint the city’s unique features.
Managing director Phil Dean wants the new brand to reflect Leeds’ recent growth and confidence, as well as promote an international appeal.
‘The most important thing is that we create a brand that can take the city to the next stage,’ says Dean. ‘Let’s not restrict ourselves by comparing the city to other northern cities. Let’s compare ourselves to Milan and Barcelona.’
Dean is also keen that the identity is rooted in the city.
He says the branding will go hand in hand with development work taking place across Leeds. The building of Kissing Towers, designed by Ian Simpson, will help raise the profile of the city.