The thesis, The Image of the Hochsteiermark: an analysis of rural branding, explores the establishment and promotion of a tourist destination in the eastern part of upper Styria. This place brand aims to create a unique image by showing its strong connection to nature. In the first part of my thesis I explain terms such as place marketing and place branding, which both seek to present a tourist destination as effectively as possible. However, the focus of this thesis lies on the branding process of the Hochsteiermark. This marketing technique not merely wants to present the positive sides of a place, but also seeks to create a successful brand that is able to be associated with a certain lifestyle. For this reason, I used statements of interviewees and examined how the Hochsteiermark markets its attractions. Furthermore, I analyzed what kind of tourism was happening prior to the establishment of the Hochsteiermark. In order to facilitate the analysis of this branding process I used academic literature such as the one by Ashworth,G. and Kavaratzis, M. (2010) as well as Williams (2009). In the second part of my thesis, I outline the two empirical methods, which I applied. The first one is the so-called content analysis, which categorizes and interprets reoccurring contents of pictures. In terms of the Hochsteiermark, I used the images of the official promotion folder of this tourist destination. The other empirical method that I applied was the so-called semi-structured interview with residents, tourists as well as the main marketer of the Hochsteiermark. In these interviews I asked them specific questions about the Hochsteiermark, for example, what their associations with this brand are. Finally, I interpreted and compared the results of these two empirical methods with the desired image of the Hochsteiermark.