Costa Rica is the best country brand in Latin America, says the seventh annual edition of the Country Brand Index (CBI), the global study of country brand strength by Future Brand, published last November 11th.
The CBI analyzes countries around the world in five main dimensions: Value System, Quality of Life, Good for Business, Heritage and Culture, and Tourism.
According to Future Brand, these are the factors that differentiate one country brand from another.
Costa Rica was chosen as the best country brand in Latin America due to its relatively strong performance across all five dimensions.
Costa Rica ranked particularly high in the Natural Beauty category, in which it held the 5th spot out of all the countries. In the global ranking Costa Rica obtained the 24th position, moving up 3 spots in comparison with last year’s ranking.
Brazil, Argentina, Chile and Peru make up the rest of the top 5 in Latin America, with Chile representing the most growth over the last two years.
Meanwhile, other countries in the region performed well only in specific metrics. For example, Uruguay ranked high in categories such as Value System and Quality of Life, while Panama ranked very well in the Good for Business and Shopping categories.Other countries showed polarized perceptions. That is the case of Venezuela which has political issues, and Colombia which shows security problems.
Future Brand gathered its data between July and September through the use of several social media and research tools.
The report was based on the opinions of 3500 business and leisure travelers in 14 countries around the world, as well as the views and perceptions of experts in tourism, investment, and public policy in 16 different cities around the world.
“A strong country brand is more than the sum of its attributes: in total, it must make people’s lives better. From progressive politics to a sense of openness and freedom of speech, a country that is geared around its people and their needs will always score highly,” the report indicated.
Due to its rigorous and sophisticated research tools, the Country Brand Index has established itself as the most authoritative study on country branding in the world.
This year, the Costa Rican Institute of Tourism (ICT) has worked hard in developing several marketing strategies and promotional campaigns to consolidate Costa Rica as the best destination in Latin America.
Last October, the ICT created the campaign “Costa Rica’s Million Dollar Gift of Happiness,” which goal is to increase the flow of tourist traffic from the United States and Canada.
The campaign will extend until February 2013, and it represents an investment of $6,4 million.
As part of the campaign, the ICT will give away 80 free trips to Costa Rica through several social media sites like Facebook.
The ICT has also been promoting the country in other touristic markets.
For example, early this month the ICT participated in the World Travel Market Fair in London. The ICT stand had a total of 250m² and it focused on promoting Costa Rica’s natural beauty and its sustainability.
During the event, Costa Rica won the best stand design award. The judges praised the Costa Rican stand for the combination of music, rainforest sounds, and general decoration, which made visitors felt as if they were in Costa Rica.
In addition, last month the ICT participated in important touristic events such as the International Latin American Fair (FIT) in Argentina, the AVAB Fair in Brazil, and the Central America Travel Market Fair in Panama.
“Trade relationships that are established during touristic fairs allow us not only to work as a country in the consolidation of our touristic product, but also in the diversification of markets,” said Allan Flores, Minister of Tourism.
Flores indicates that the Ministry of Tourism (ICT) continues to work hard in promoting Costa Rican touristic destinations, especially in highly profitable markets.
By David Gómez for TheCostaRicaNews.com