‘Ireland’s DNA’ campaign a success says County Council

DONEGAL County Council says its unique ‘Ireland’s DNA’ branding has been a success and has given the area a “distinct and consistent visual identity”.

It is almost two years since the local authority unveiled the slogan with the goal of promoting the county as a place to “live, work, study and invest”.

A clothing line followed, making Donegal the first county in Ireland to have its own garment range.


A Freedom of Information request has revealed that over €12,000 of public money has been spent on the campaign.

The largest chunk of the money, €4,000, has gone towards video development in collaboration with tech company Donegal Digital.

Over €3,000 has been spent on branded clothing for which Donegal County Council has yet to receive a single penny in return.

Trademarking the ‘DNA’ brand cost €2,145 alongside smaller pay out amounts such as printed materials and ‘brand activation concepts’.

The overall cost to the taxpayer has been €12,410.

Donegal County Council says it has been money well spent with the ‘Ireland’s DNA’ label reaching millions of people worldwide.

A spokesperson said, “The new Donegal place brand was launched in 2021 with a view to creating a single unified brand that promotes Donegal as a great place to live, work, invest, explore and study.


“The design which visually communicates a fingerprint to symbolise the county’s unique DNA collectively represents a number of Donegal’s distinct assets, from its rich heritage and strong diaspora connections to contemporary digital and innovation.

“The brand uses two taglines – ‘It’s in our DNA’ and ‘Ireland’s DNA’ – and these highlight that Donegal embraces the best that Ireland has to offer, from inspiring landscape to our warm and welcoming people, as well as being a great location to grow and scale your business.”

The clothing brand, launched in September 2022, is manufactured by O’Neill’s Sportswear. It ranges from bobble hats selling at €19 to padded jackets costing up to €68.

Donegal County Council does not directly sell the leisurewear so it is not clear how many items have been sold. There are arrangements however for the authority to accrue a small commission on goods purchased. It is expected that the first income from the agreement will be received in the coming months.

Overall the Council said it feels the branding project has been a success.

“Since launch the place brand has provided a distinct and consistent visual identity for a range of initiatives including #LoveDonegal day which reached 11 million people on social media in 2022, the Buy Donegal campaign with 300 businesses across Donegal participating, the Working Holiday #WorkHolDL initiative in collaboration with remote working hubs across the county with over 300 people nationally and internationally availing of a free digital hub day pass during the summer of 2022.

“The new Donegal clothing range has provided another opportunity to build awareness of the new Donegal placebrand and the ongoing #MovetoDonegal relocation campaign.

“In addition the Donegal place brand has also played an important part of the in-market investment proposal in collaboration with a range of stakeholders such as IDA Ireland, Enterprise Ireland and Údáras na Gaeltachta to positively promote Donegal as a viable business relocation and start-up location,” the Council added.

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