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Branding Cities & Institutions


Tel Aviv-Yafo – A Non-Stop City

Tel-Aviv – Israel’s strongest brand name – was not born as such but became “Tel Aviv” – and quite coincidentally.
Read below to find out more about what unintentionally became the Tel Aviv branding project.

Tel-Aviv is Israel’s strongest brand name. It is a city that never sleeps. A metropolis often mistaken by foreigners for Israel’s capital and frequently mentioned in the same breath as New York, Berlin, London, Rome and Amsterdam. Yet, this city, which is the throbbing heart of the center of Israel, was once a far cry from the acclaimed brand-name that it is today. 
In fact, it was not that long ago that Tel Aviv seemed a prematurely aging city which was on the verge of its sad demise. The number of residents fell to a low 317,000 and Tel Aviv deteriorated into a city ridden with smog, exhaust fumes and “Denver Boots” (wheel clamps). Those who were not residents of the city kept their distance and would not come to Tel Aviv "unless absolutely necessary". This was the general trend of the city, until 1988 ushered in a dramatic transformation: the mayor at the time, Mr. Shlomo Lahat (also known as Chich) decided to launch a well publicized campaign to save his dying city.

The initiative lead to an approach that produced the slogan “Tel Aviv – A Non-Stop City” coined by Ilan Shir (later to become one of the two Heads of Shir & Shpizer). What started off as a mischievous yet naïve advertising slogan rapidly became the immortal icon of Tel Aviv and the force behind its regeneration. Under the slogan, the city began emerging as Israel’s nightlife capital and as a city that never sleeps, in stark contrast to the rest of the cities in Israel at the time. And wherever the action is – that’s where the youngsters go; and wherever the youngsters go – businesses, nightlife, fashion, rising real-estate demand and ongoing development follow. The local “consumers” (the city’s residents) began realizing this vision and the city began to bubble over in exhilaration as Tel Aviv was reborn as the undisputed reign of Israel's business activity and nightlife.

Tel Aviv has been nurturing this image ever since and today the city is considered the hub of Israel’s cultural life, similarly to the world’s leading capitals, despite its compact size. In Israeli culture, Tel Aviv has become synonymous with individualism, hedonism, liberalism and freedom, and those who taste even a morsel of what the city has to offer, enjoy these values and are inspired by the brand-name city’s enrapturing spirit.
And to think that it all began almost by accident…

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