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Edmonton Branding and Tourism strategy

How many Edmontonians realize that Harbin, China, is a sister city of Edmonton?
I'm told that many people who live in Harbin - a metro population of 10 million - know all about Edmonton, but I doubt the vice versa applies.

Here's a to-do list:
  • Explore Edmonton, Edmonton Global or whoever is in charge of the city's marketing will need to increase brand awareness as Harbin's sister city
  • Install the new Harbin Gate on 97 St as soon as possible
  • Rename a commuter route to Harbin Trail. I propose 82 St from Jasper Ave to Valour Ave north of the Henday, although 97 St from Jasper Ave to Yellowhead Trail also makes sense
  • Non-stop flight between YEG and Harbin
A similar to-do list should be considered for Nashville, another sister city of Edmonton.
97th Street from Jasper to 118th Ave would be better named Harbin as that is Chinatown area.
 
Alberta Avenue -- aka Honky Tonk Highway North with (and now I'm dreaming) a completely refitted Northlands Coliseum as a major concert venue broken up into smaller "rooms" (not a competitor to the ICE District for major shows) -- very high quality acoustic venues -- putting the "A" back in Alberta Avenue after having lost the Oilers sports venue, the Northlands (horse-racing, exhibition, etc.), the packing Plant district, and the oomph of a viable neighborhood-rich street.
 
97th Street from Jasper to 118th Ave would be better named Harbin as that is Chinatown area.
102 avenue between 97th street and 95th street/jasper avenue is already named harbin road.
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it doesn’t get quite as congested as harbin’s edmonton road which connects two major ring roads and the harbin-taiping international airport.
IMG_7792.jpeg
 
102 Ave between 97 St and 95 St now has the Valley Line LRT line, which is hardly what I call a major commuter route, unlike 97 St or 82 St. Harbin Ave isn't on the LRT maps. Harbin Ave doesn't even show up on Google Maps. I want this city to think bigger than that!

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My spouse and I are travelling the hwy 3 corridor through BC the last 10 days and it’s been funny. She has been comparing all the Welcome to signs of every town to Edmontons concrete big signs. They have all been better and not by being bigger but being simple, colourful and way less expensive. (Remember the Dub Aurora idea a couple of years back?). She’s been laughing at me too as I point out out all the visitor information sites everywhere that are flush with people and Edmonton Tourism got rid of both Gateway and downtown a few years ago because “everything is digital”. We could do so much better by doing the simple things right.
 

Not sure if anyone has heard of a website called "Why Edmonton?".

It's meant to show why Edmonton is a great place to live, work, study and visit.
I saw this on CBC. Apparently its been around since 2022, which is ironic given if the intention of this is to boost the profile of Edmonton both internally and externally yet I have seen nothing about this organization on this or other forums, LinkedIn, the internet, etc. in its 1+ year existence.
 
With regards to the international b-ball event at Ice District July 28-30, organizer Paul Sir is hoping to solidify Edmonton as Canada's national training center for the growing sport of 3on3.

A $14 million plan was presented to city council in 2020 to have three halls in Expo center converted into basketball and volleyball courts, as well as a hydraulic track for athletics - all three sport associations were on board (imagine if we didn't have to spend nearly $40million to tear down coliseum). Council was supportive but money wasn't there. Now Sir is trying to scale that back to at least one hall in Expo Centre for basketball training centre.

Story picked up in the Montreal Gazette.



As for the upcoming 3 on 3 tournament there will be plenty of on-site activations including dancers and musicians, as well as a Red Bull Pascal Siakam fan experience.

"As for the actual on-court entertainment, it will include dunk and shootout contests, which are fan favourites. The men’s tournament features Team Ub from Serbia, which has won all four World Tour events this year; the reigning Olympic champs from Riga, Latvia; Canadian teams from Toronto and St. Boniface; as well as contenders from Amsterdam, the U.S. and Team Ulaanbaatar from Mongolia."
 
I saw this on CBC. Apparently its been around since 2022, which is ironic given if the intention of this is to boost the profile of Edmonton both internally and externally yet I have seen nothing about this organization on this or other forums, LinkedIn, the internet, etc. in its 1+ year existence.

Link to the video. The campaign does not instill confidence or excitement in my opinion. "Why Edmonton?" could easily be read in a negative or confused tone. The phrase is not typically used as an enticing campaign title. Its more often used as a subsection title to explain (unoriginal as that may be). We continue to have a place branding issue...
 

Link to the video. The campaign does not instill confidence or excitement in my opinion. "Why Edmonton?" could easily be read in a negative or confused tone. The phrase is not typically used as an enticing campaign title. Its more often used as a subsection title to explain (unoriginal as that may be). We continue to have a place branding issue...
Unfortunately, I agree. I pulled up Explore Edmonton's website and I am not able to determine what purpose "Why Edmonton?" fills that is not done by Explore Edmonton. It almost seems to duplicate the efforts of Explore Edmonton except it doesnt do it as well.



Ironically, when you type "Why Edmonton" into Google, the first autocomplete result is "why Edmonton is the worst" which leads to a number of hits shitting all over Edmonton.
 
Edmonton seems to remind me of a conscientious student in school, rarely getting recognition. They work hard with the promise that the rewards will come. Sometimes it works out that way. Edmonton has notable entrepreneurs, particularly in the restaurant business. Edmonton has other notable achievements, but it’s hard to compete with the “in” crowd.

We've seen that, through the years, that Edmonton isn't the favorite child.
 
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Unfortunately, I agree. I pulled up Explore Edmonton's website and I am not able to determine what purpose "Why Edmonton?" fills that is not done by Explore Edmonton. It almost seems to duplicate the efforts of Explore Edmonton except it doesnt do it as well.



Ironically, when you type "Why Edmonton" into Google, the first autocomplete result is "why Edmonton is the worst" which leads to a number of hits shitting all over Edmonton.
What's also ironic is that the campaign is aimed at educating and instilling civic pride in edmontontonians yet their own messaging seems unsure of itself. The marketing and branding should be abundantly clear so that you do not have to ask the akward question of why Edmonton.
I'm not a marketing expert but just find the effort to be missing the mark.
 
Unfortunately, I agree. I pulled up Explore Edmonton's website and I am not able to determine what purpose "Why Edmonton?" fills that is not done by Explore Edmonton. It almost seems to duplicate the efforts of Explore Edmonton except it doesnt do it as well.



Ironically, when you type "Why Edmonton" into Google, the first autocomplete result is "why Edmonton is the worst" which leads to a number of hits shitting all over Edmonton.
Website also looks like it was done by a first year graphic design student who won’t make a great career out of their schooling…
 
Edmonton considered the 38th best sports city in the world, 2nd in Canada


Rogers Place, Commonwealth Stadium, RE/MAX Field, Expo Centre, Kinsmen and other recreation facilities, Oilers, Elks (winless streak notwithstanding), Riverhawks, Stingers, soccer players, curlers, boxers, triathletes, track & field - need I go on? :)
 

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