A proposed Model for Country Branding: an experimental Application on Nigeria
Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
In the era of globalization, countries compete with each other for attention, respect and trust of potential consumers, investors, tourists, media and governments of other nations. Branding is the most powerful tool that a nation can utilize for effective differentiation strategies and for creating competitive advantage over other nations. Unfortunately, not every nations or destination marketers have a broad understanding of the concept of branding and how a country can be successfully branded. Hence, this study has proposed a model that could be used as a valuable guide for country branding. Also the model is recommended for countries struggling with image crisis; on the mission to improve the image internationally.
Nigeria is a good example of countries with image crisis; it is one of the most populated countries in the world with a population of about 160 million inhabitants and growth rate of 2.553percent annually. Despite the abundant resources (e.g. coal, petroleum, natural gas etc.) that the nation is endowed with, it is quite disappointing that the population below poverty line is still at the alarming rate of 70percent of the total population. The mismanagement and poor leadership of the nation characterised by corruption, fraud, embezzlement of public fund etc. has culminated into serious image crisis that is slowing down the potential for investment and economic growth. However, there has been series of image rebranding campaigns but no tangible achievement has been recorded. It is quite questionable though, if image rebranding will provide the kind of future that Nigeria envisaged, considering the socio-political situation and the economic imbalance; compounded by the obvious fact that the nation has no known brand.
Therefore, this paper argues that there is need to redirect the effort invested on image rebranding to the creation of a unique and competitive brand for the country. It was established from the study that a nation’s brand is capable of improving the reputation of the nation as well as stimulate the expectation of the target audience. However, it was also established from the study that a wrong approach to branding could mislead the target audience and attract negative publicity. Hence, as a contribution of the study to the field of branding, a model was proposed as a functional guide for country branding. Also, considering the abysmal performance of Nigeria’s image in the international community and to strengthen the argument that brand creation is required for the country; an experimental application of the proposed model was conducted using Nigeria as the case country. The first phase of the model suggested a major improvement in the society; this is required to further enhance the strengths of the country and to motivate the much needed community participation and confidence in the brand creation. It is the conclusion of the study that a strong nation brand can offset the image problem if it is built on something concrete, genuine, and uniquely identifiable with the country, capable of connecting to the cognitive psychology of the target audience.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. , 85 p.
Branding, Image Crisis, Rebranding, Tourism, Destination Image, Developmental Planning, Sustainable development, Country Branding Model, Nigeria
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:du-10397OAI: oai:DiVA.org:du-10397DiVA: diva2:542906
UppsokSocial and Behavioural Science, Law
Elbe, Jorgen, Assoc. Prof.
Gebert-Persson, Sabine, Ph. D