Fast Company

The Brand Called USA

I'm in Atlanta today for a Company of Friends event featuring Joey Reiman of Brighthouse -- and supported by Wingate Inn.

On the flight here, I read a piece in the Atlantic about Business for Diplomatic Action, an organization founded by ad master Keith Reinhard -- and one designed to improve the Brand Called USA overseas.

Shades of Fast Company's recent rebranding contest, the group hopes that business -- the private sector -- can bridge the gaps between America and our foreign partners. What think you? Does Brand America need repair? What needs to be done to improve work relationships around the world?

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7 Comments

  • Peter Boyce

    From an Australian perspective, where we have a head of government closely aligned to President George W Bush, Brand USA remains strong, albeit more cautiously valued. Recent collaborations between our nations in Defence and Free Trade offer good examples of Yin and Yang as it were. Brand USA is strong enough to continue to command support in many areas of research, commerce, media, music and so on. Brand USA is also weakening as a post modernist, complexity aware world is increasingly aware of the debt accumulating in such things as famine, pollution and terrorism that seemingly are the other side of the success of globalization, capitalism, consumerism and data rationalism. (Brand Australia faces similar challenges and how we handle such things as East Timor, Indonesia, Tourism, Migration and our alignment with the US are very important.)

    Like any brand valuation, in part, the value is in the economic elements, but much of it is in the relationship between the target market and the brand. Becoming more worldly, dialogically competent, patient, even handed and egalitarian seems to be increasingly required in order to add to the relationship as much as is being added to the economics. Being better at this type of balance seems more likely to add net value to Brand USA.

  • Lin

    Nico, can't find anything on the book title you mentioned. Are you talking about 'Brand America' by Simon Anholt? Saw something about it in the UK media recently. Interesting perspective. Traces how America has deliberately and consciously built and managed itself as a brand, and why Brand America is suffering a decline. Author's a leading expert in creating brand strategies for countries and cities. Has solid reviews on amazon. Offers 'stimulating suggestions for how to repair our broken image.' Here's the full web address:
    http://www.amazon.co.uk/exec/o...

  • Nico Blaauw

    Check out the new book 'America! The brand' -- finally an attempt to describe what's happening with the brand, despite politics.

  • Calle Sjonell

    USA sincerely need to change its foreign policy. It needs to respect other peoples opinions and not confuse the american way with the worlds way. It does not matter what you say. Its what you do.

    Start with changing out Bush.

  • Chris Macrae

    Recently the Chief Brand Officer Association & thinktank at http://www.medinge.org held a poll of their members who include many of the world's advisers on nation branding as well as the editor of the journal place brands. How much has the equity of USA lost in the world outside USA over the last 5 years. The mean estimate : 'the world values relationships with America at 55% of what it experienced in 1999.' Now I am well aware our group tends to believe brand valuations are highly system*system connected - we predicted Andersen would be devalued to zero many quarters ahead of the result. Of course leaders make less isolationalist decisions if they use our risk analysis methods rather than the separatist school of intangibles valuation thinking that Andersen used to thought lead. http://tenbillion.blogspot.com...

  • Tom

    It is difficult to judge the world's opinion of Brand USA. What we gather from news services is that the USA label does not carry the cache that it has in the past. We need to take a close look at the value-added nature of our relationships with our global partners. What is it that we bring to the table and what can we do to improve the perceived value of a relationship with Brand USA.

  • Charlie

    As a foreigner, you need to do something to help brand USA, unfortunately it has fallen below france in popularity ratings. Brand USA needs help!