Cris has worked with Bloom Consulting since 2018 as a Nation and Place Branding Consultant, contributing to over 10 client projects in research, strategy, implementation, and measurement for country, region and city brands.
Cris, what are you working on at the moment?
At this moment, among other things, I dedicate my time to two of our ongoing brand projects:
1) For several months now, we have been working on a City Brand project in the Middle East. Myself specifically, I have been working to develop the city’s Central Idea, purpose, and narratives which celebrate the tremendous transformation that is taking place throughout the city.
2) The Region Brand for an archipelago off the African coast in the Atlantic. I’ve been working on the Brand Book with the objective to tell the project’s story and present the brand and its narratives to the people of the islands and to the world.
In parallel, I’m working on further developing Bloom Consulting’s methodology. We are constantly looking for new ways and approaches to improve our offer for current and future clients as well as contribute our ideas and know-how to the field.
Could you describe your typical workday?
My typical workday depends on the projects I am working on and more importantly, which phase of the project we are in. Besides Nation and Place Branding projects, we have our hands in other pots as well such as research projects, Bloom Consulting Country Brand Rankings, and the development of new products and tools.
That said, I also dedicate my days to staying up with leading industry trends, conducting and participating in research projects, and contributing to the creative process of crafting and developing unique and relevant Central Ideas for our clients.
Alongside the Bloom team, I work to contribute my expertise and know-how to our own resource of information, the Bloom Consulting Journal. I make use of my past experiences and current studies to create technical content about Nation and Place Branding.
What do you love most about what you do?
In short, I would say that it is very rewarding. I can think of several reasons, but will leave you with three, shedding light on my personal sense of fulfillment gained through my work with Bloom:
1) I have the chance to dive deeply into the client’s “place” whether country, region or city and learn a great deal about them. We use several very insightful datasets and get feedback from prominent local, regional, and national figures who have amazing stories to tell about their home which we would never find in the media. On top of that, I have the chance to understand “the other side”, the way a place is perceived by the rest of the world…
The knowledge and understanding we get by working with clients are enriching to say the least. We’re required to go deep to do our job but it’s remarkably interesting from a personal perspective as well.
2) The fact that every client is fresh start. This means that every new project is a chance to discover a new place, set new objectives, tackle new challenges, and learn new lessons. We never get bored!
3) We are known for our work and close cooperation with our clients. New projects mean new partners and having the chance to meet and exchange ideas with new brilliant minds all across the world. We’ve met people across different time zones (most time zones), with new approaches, new perspectives, and new ways of working…always having a lot of fun.
Which Nation or Place Brand holds a special place in your heart?
Although there are a lot of amazing Nation and Place Brands worldwide, I must confess that the ones we have actively worked on and thus became very familiar with will always hold a special place in my heart. Which of course makes it almost impossible to name only one.
Among my top choices, I would have to say Israel. Besides it being my first project, which in and of itself is enough reason to be my favorite, it also challenged my personal beliefs and perceptions about the country. I’ve had the great privilege to listen and learn firsthand from inspiring Israeli women and men about their businesses, experiences, culture and lifestyle all within the context of Israel.
I could empathize and easily diagnose the contrast between the country’s outside image (mostly politically driven) and the “real” people and vibe that one feels when there. It brings me great joy to know that our work has helped to show off the lesser seen, but perhaps more important picture of the country; its people, their spirit, and the things that they continue to achieve every single day. I’ve learned so much about a people and culture that really grew on me while deepening my sense of appreciation and relatability.
Second to Israel I would have to mention Australia. I love the country and loved being there while working with the Australia Nation Brand team, getting the chance to travel around the country. Australia’s brand is one of the most loved in all the world and to say I have had the opportunity to have some part in this is a check off the Place Brand bucket list. I have every intention to go back!