Branding Ireland : an examination of the construction of Ireland’s national brand
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The Republic of Ireland has advanced the same branding proposition in its tourism campaigns for decades, relying on images that depict idyllic scenery and messaging designed to appeal to those who seek an escape from the complexity of the modern world (Fanning, 2011). Such images have contributed to the formation of Ireland’s national brand. The literature demonstrates that national images are the foundation for national brands and most of these images are saturated in stereotypes, many of which are outdated and distorted. In today’s global economic environment, nations must be very conscious of the image they project to the world, because this has direct implications for a nation’s economic success. The objective of this research is to analyze how images of Ireland as a destination for tourism construct a national brand of Ireland. This study is guided by the following question: how does Tourism Ireland brand Ireland to a U.S. audience? The study found that Tourism Ireland reinforces stereotypical depictions of Ireland in its current campaigns by portraying Ireland as an escape from the modern world and by commodifying the past.