5 things you should know about “Be Berlin” Campaign

A few months ago, for the needs of our graduate course on Smart Cities, our Professor Betty Tsakarestou challenged us to explore the globe and find out what makes a city sustainable, smart or simply better for its habitants to live in. Our team (Christina Charalampidou, Marieta Christopoulou and Effie Tzoumani) chose Latin America to begin with and then slowly moved to our most familiar continent, so here are some of our favorite European City Stories: Barcelona, Lisbon, Berlin, and Istanbul.

You may now believe that no one thinks Berlin isn’t a beautiful place to be and live, but the things were quite different before 2008. An opinion poll conducted by market researchers TNS Infratest had found that the city missed a clear profile. Foreign respondents said they thought other cities were significantly more attractive as places to live and work.

The “Be Berlin” campaign was born after these results and within the years 2008–2012, the actions that took place in the region managed to make Berlin’s profile more specific and the city more desirable.

“Be Berlin” logo

Below, we try to point out parts of this campaign that anyone should learn, in order to make their city better. Undoubtedly, these are the things that drove to success this initiative and made people love Berlin.

  1. It was financed by the Senate and the business community

The “Be Berlin” Campaign was conducted by the Senate and financed both by the Senate the business community. The success of the project shows that teaming up is better than individual actions, when it comes to city branding.


2. It was up to date

Socia media became famous 2007 onwards and this campaign managed to adopt this trend and not to be outdated. Nowadays “Be Berlin” has more than 1,6 million Facebook fans and 8,7 thousand fans. As for Instagram, on #beberlin there are more than 8,2 thousand photos, promoting the city.

3. It had nothing spectacular

The campaign was focused on “3,4 million men and women in Berlin who make the city so unmistakable and play an active part in shaping the city’s transformations” as it is mensioned in the official website. That means that there was the belief that Berliners were able to change the things. Nothing spectacular was on the plan of “Be Berlin”. There weren’t grandiose events.


4. The messaging was powerful

Looking on the messaging of the campaign, you can see nothing but confidence, fun and love for Berlin. A very good example of the powerful messages that were used, is at the image below.

“Be Berlin” poster

5. The city became more extrover

How can someone feel safe and willing to move in Berlin? Maybe if the procedures are simple and the opportunities are more! That’s what the team of “Be Berlin” thought and moved towards this way. Powerful messages showed that the city is willing to accept anyone from anywhere, if they have a will to do creative things. “Be Berlin” initiated a marketing campaign calling Berlin the “Digital Capital” and now is a paradise on earth for start-ups.

Last but not least, “Be Berlin” is still alive. Even if the main project took place in 2008–2012, until know everyone can read about it online and see the evaluation of the city. There are new articles published on the official website of the campaign and this shows that the city continues on the same path and has consistency on its acts.

*The article is based on informations found basically on the official website of Be Berlin.

Check our ppt on “Be Berlin” here.

If you want to see how this journey ends, click here.

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