Brand Brazil loses strength and impacts visibility of products

05 July, 2019 Share socially

In the past countries were evaluated by power-related metrics such as GDP, population, and land-mass, but increasingly they have been assessed across softer social and cultural factors. In the case of Brazil, weakness in these areas has led to a fall of four positions in the FutureBrand Country Index, which reorders the strength of the 75 wealthiest countries by perception strength, since the last edition in 2014.

Japan is the country with the best reputation and appears, for the second time, in the Index in number one position. Norway and Switzerland occupy second and third place in the ranking whilst Sweden, Finland, Germany, Denmark, Canada, Austria and Luxembourg, in this order, complete the list of nations with the 10 best brands in the world. Brazil is in 5th position in Latin America and only 47th in the general ranking, performing well below the average of the top 10 countries across the 6 dimensions evaluated.

Japan also stands out in the 'Made In' dimension - which assesses the perception of people in relation to the products and services offered by the country. People all over the world consider buying a Japanese product because they immediately associate them with innovation and technology. "It is interesting to note that a country's brands contribute strongly to the perception of the country brand, in the same way that the country brand builds the perception of its brands."

In the case of Brazil, in the Made In category, only 19% of those questioned perceive Brazilian products and services to be of high quality. The best result in this dimension is Brazil's capability for producing unique products at 26% - a reflection of a country that has difficulties in exporting products with high added value.

Of all the interviewees, 40% consider the set of attractions and the variety of resorts and lodgings in Brazil to be of interest. 46% of those asked consider the country to be a good place to spend the holidays but do not consider it good value for money. Brazil performed best as a place of natural beauty but it is not considered strong in terms of history, art, culture and historical points of interest, scoring below the global average at 30%.

Daniel Alencar, Managing Partner of FutureBrand São Paulo, explains that in order to improve the perception of Brand Brazil, coordinated initiatives are needed between different sectors of society. "Despite the problems, we tend to have an optimistic view about the country. The FutureBrand Country Index shows how much we need to move forward. Investing in the country-brand is critical not only for the economy, but also for the evolution of society. "

What items would you highlight that Brazil needs to work to improve its external perception?

The perception of Brazil is not positive. It is far below the average of the top 10 countries in the ranking on virtually all criteria (except natural beauty). Among the largest gaps in relation to other countries in the world are: quality of life, business potential and the negative perception regarding our technology and infrastructure. In addition to all the structural reforms - essential for Brazil to move forward - we need to create a positive agenda for the country. This involves stopping generating negative news about ourselves, but also investing in branded content. If we think of the content that foreigners consume about the country - from news to film - it is not difficult to understand why our brand is weakened.

The country's brands directly influence the country's brand, just as the country brand brings a number of associations to its brands

What are the elements (from a marketing point of view) that strengthen Brazil as a brand?

Tourism is still the most positive aspect of Brazil externally. In addition to the natural beauty already mentioned, the number of attractions and lodging options stand out. Still, the country is not associated with good value for money. We have to improve our infrastructure to attract more tourists to Brazil, but there seems to be an opportunity to invest in more contemporary tools to raise awareness of the country as a destination.

Does having strong brands in Brazil contribute in any way to the perception of the country as a brand?

The country's brands directly influence the country brand, just as the country brand brings a number of associations to its brands or companies. A good example is Germany: how much of the German brand personality is influenced by its association with German cars? Today Brazil stands out only in food and beverages - much influenced by agribusiness and fashion.

Brazil does not have strong global brands. This creates a vicious cycle. The country has difficulty "selling" high value-added products

Which industries does Brazil have the strongest brands in?

Brazil does not have strong global brands. This creates a vicious cycle. The country has difficulty "selling" high value-added products (even internally). The perception about technology and high technology products is far below average. There is no way to break this barrier without consistent investment in key sectors.

This interview originally appeared in Meio & Mensagem.