Nation Brand FAQs

You might have heard of nation branding but do not know what it actually means. You may even want to know more about it. In the spirit of Brand South Africa’s upcoming Nation Brand Forum, we present to you the answers to some frequently asked questions on nation branding.


What is nation branding?

It is about managing a country’s image, usually portraying it in a positive light.

What makes up a nation brand?

To create a positive image about a country, there are six things that a brand should cover. These are: business, tourism, exports, culture and heritage, governance and people.

Who came up with the nation brand concept?

British policy advisor, Simon Anholt had come up with the term and the practice of nation branding. He also created the Nation Brand Index, which was launched in 2005, as a way to measure a country’s reputation.

How is nation branding different from product branding?

Product branding is concerned with promoting a single or number of products or services, which can be very simple. But unlike the branding of a product, the branding of a nation covers many aspects that make up a country. When a foreign tourist thinks of South Africa, the images that immediately come to mind are of wildlife, Nelson Mandela, gold and diamonds. While those are great selling points of South Africa, we know that there is so much more that makes this country great, such as its beaches, its food and most of all, its friendly people.

Who is responsible for branding South Africa?

It might be easy to say that it is Brand South Africa’s job to create a good image of the country, but in reality it is up to every South African citizen to build that reputation.

How can I create a positive image of South Africa?

Start by being an active citizen, or in other words, by helping your community thrive. Start a movement, bring your ideas to life or, if you are a sportsperson, coach the children in your neighbourhood. You as a South African have the power to make this country great.