DES: Both of us were saddened at how poor the quality of the destination branding was at last week's Best of British Travel Trade Forum at London's Excel.
TINA: It seems the larger the brand, the worse the branding got.
DES:From country brands such as England, Wales and Scotland to regional brands such as South West and South East England to county brands such as Somerset, Northumberland and East & West Sussex.
TINA: It seems they were all playing the 'come visit us because we've got everything for you branding game' - from heritage and history to landscapes and architecture.
DES: Even our favourite county brand - Kent - seems to be getting a tad bored with its big brand idea: The Garden of England.
TINA: While the state of UK destination branding is pretty desperate, we did however find a rare glimmer of hope.
Yes, well done the county of Warwickshire, totally focused on its major asset: Shakespeare.
TINA: Its sub-brands - Warwick Castle, Rugby, Coventry and Leamington Spa - all taking a backseat to Shakespeare's birthplace: Stratford-upon-Avon.
DES: Warwickshire has certainly bought into our brand mantra: Find a narrowly-focused big brand idea from your past but which also has a big future
TINA: So Shakespeare Country can't just rest on its quill pen, it now needs to future-focus Shakespeare's great works - from Hamlet to Twelfth Night - by not only making the plays and poems of the Great Bard relevant to contemporary society, but it must also script out a prosperous future.
'Brand' the Marketect says:
"First attract with a single branded proposition, then distract with multiple products and experiences ."