City Nation Place Americas, happening on June 5 and 6 in New York City, is one conference you don’t want to miss.

By Chris Fair

There are certainly no shortage of conferences and events to attend each year. In just the month of May alone I’ll be attending conferences and making presentations in Detroit, San Luis Obispo, Madrid, Paris, New York and Calgary.

But one of the events that I’m most excited about is the City Nation Place Americas conference June 5 – 6 in New York. I spoke at the first City Nation Place conference in London three years ago and found that it was the first event to bring together leaders from both economic development, tourism, real estate and government to discuss and debate best practises around the branding and marketing of place—whether it be for a neighborhood, city, region or country. The full conference agenda is being finalized this week, which you can view here, but these are five of the sessions I’m looking forward to on the first day of the conference.

1. Industry City Tour

Just the words “New York” probably conjure up images of Manhattan in your mind. But many of the most interesting developments in the city are happening in New York’s other boroughs. Industry City is a massive redevelopment of several turn-of-the-20th century warehouses originally built as a port facility along the Brooklyn waterfront. The tour will give attendees an insider’s look into NYC’s contemporary manufacturing, tech, and design industries. We’ll discuss the redevelopment of the complex along with the opportunities and challenges that its redevelopment presents.

Industry City on the Brooklyn waterfront.

Industry City on the Brooklyn waterfront. Photo courtesy of Industry City

2. New Orleans

New Orleans certainly made an impression when I first visited as a university student. Of course the city has changed significantly since then. But the essence of New Orleans remains the same. I first saw their new marketing campaign while on the subway in New York this winter and was struck by both its simplicity and how well it captured that essence. The New Orleans CVB’s VP of Communications Kristian Sonnier will present his city’s story and the process they took to develop their brand and the campaign.

3. Perception Vs. Performance

Ipsos is one of the world’s largest research companies. We’ve been working together to identify and analyze the factors that shape our perception of the desirability of places to live, visit and do business. In this session, Ipsos Senior VP Jason McGrath and I will share our latest research and an analysis of which factors have the highest correlation with attracting both international visitors and foreign direct investment.

4. Beautiful Destinations

This week, conference organizers will be announcing that Beautiful Destinations Founder and CEO Jeremy Jauncey will be speaking on digital trends and the role social media plays in shaping perception of place. Beautiful Destinations has more than 15 million followers on Instagram and was selected as one of the World’s 50 Most Innovative Companies by Fast Company in 2017.

5. America’s Best Cities 

We’re excited to release our 2018 America’s Best Cities report at the end of Day One. The report benchmarks cities using a unique combination of core statistics and analysis of consumer-generated ratings and reviews to provide cities with a holistic view of their competitive identity. This helps cities understand their strengths and weaknesses through the lens of the people who matter most—visitors and residents.

Whether you’re focused on marketing places for tourism, real estate, or economic development, I think you’ll find that this is an excellent forum for you and other leaders in your city to discover and discuss best practises in the marketing and promotion of your city.

I hope to see you there in June.

Chris Fair, President
Resonance Consultancy