City branding and museum souvenirs: towards improving the St. Petersburg city brand: Do museums sell souvenirs or do souvenirs sell museums?
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to identify ways to develop museum shop product, which will
possess competitive advantage, and to recommend what should be done to develop such product so that it has
a positive impact on the city brand of St. Petersburg.
Design/methodology/approach – In total, 76 museums have been studied through the observation
method to describe their shops’ inventory in terms of percentages of each product. Mostly St. Petersburg
museums were included in the analysis. The observation method enabled the researchers to analyse the
inventory of the museum souvenir shops. The findings of the analysis enabled the researchers to reach
conclusions about museums’ strategies of product development.
Findings – The research allowed to make the conclusion that although the museum shops in St.Petersburg
demonstrate positive tendencies in the development of competitive stores’ products a lot of work is still to be
done. Not all museums are characterised by availability of clear strategy for product development. They offer
souvenirs (if any) which do not differ from those existing on the market according to topics and functions
which are characteristic for them. Recommendations on how to make the product of museum shops more
competitive were proposed.
Practical implications – Cities need new and fresh ways to create and promote their brands.
Museums can contribute to this significantly with the help of souvenirs production. This research will
provide insight into the process of how museums can do this by developing their shops’ inventory
strategies. Recommendations to improve strategies for creation of competitive product were offered in