Country Brand: Weapon for the differentiation and promotion of exports in Costa Rica



The Country brand concept is used to refer to the intangible value of a country’s reputation and image through multiple aspects, such as its products, tourism, culture, sports, business and public bodies, which determine the values That are associated with that country. This offers an added value to the companies of the country, especially in the tourism and exporting sector, they are benefited when this marketing tool is well used.


At present, it is heard in many media, information on country brand, as it seems to be a term that very recurrent and we create a shallow idea about the topic. The truth is that very few are the ones who actually know the subject in depth and benefit from it.

This paper shows the positive interference of this tool in exports of Costa Rican national products.

Related Events

A few days Ago, on September 3, the launching of the new country brand of Costa Rica was launched, which gives us the floor to analyze what their benefits are for the country in a practical way. With an investment of US $650 and more than 3 years of research and design, the Costa Rican authorities are premiering «Essential Coast»

«Essential Costa Rica» is the name of the brand that will provide the country from now on investments, seducing the national and international tourists to enjoy the tourist attractions and develop the commercial theme at the local level and exports at the International, since this brand newly developed country transcends the scope of one or another sector, but encompasses a benefit for all, as stated in previous days Gabriela Llobet, general manager of CINDE. According To Llobet, this brand seeks a positioning of Costa Rica to the world.

What is the Country brand?

It Is a concept used to refer to the intangible value of the reputation and brand image of a country through multiple aspects,

The Most valuable associations to the country brand are ideas such as safe and conflict-free countries, good places for business, access to important markets, quality of human resources and technology, peace and security. With This premise we know that Costa Rica has been a country that enjoys a positive global reputation in the aforementioned points, which makes it easy to achieve a good result in the development and launching of its country brand. The countries of the region are just beginning this process, and in some cases the initiatives are more focused on the tourist identity or «brand destiny» than on the development of a country brand. Such is the case of Guatemala, a country that recently announced the creation of a virtual marketing office to help position the brand «Guatemala, the heart of the Mayan world» on social networks like Facebook and Twitter.

What is not the Country brand

It is Not only about tourism, the country brand is to develop an identity that understands tourism but also other benefits such as Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), international relations, exports, culture and sport, among others.

It is Not just a logo, a colorful logo and no strategy that supports it, would waste money on an absurd.

It is Not only for foreigners, the big shareholders of a country-brand project are nationals; Without your understanding, support and commitment to the brand, all efforts will be doomed to failure.

How has the Country brand influenced Costa Rica?

The Country brand has influenced the general idea of those who look at it from the outside.

The Country defines it as concentrated, cheerful, educated, proud of its civility, and its education, looking for opportunities, well located, open, democratic, stable, nature-friendly and peaceful. They see it as a peaceful and tranquil destination of prodigious location being very close to the most solvent demand centers. They Have applauded many things, including governance and democratic stability.

However, at this point it is worth highlighting the influence that the country brand has had on the image of Costa Rica for the benefit of the exporting sector, since Costa Rica is recognized, according to a report by CADEXCO, as a country that has had a strong promotion work in the I Direct foreign inversion (FDI) and its chaining with the local industry. They Also recognize the widely diversified and high value-added exportable offer.

To what extent does it benefit the exporting sector?

Exporters believe that for the remainder of the 2013 and the years to come, the diversification process must be deepened in order to maintain its success, considering that the growth rate will be moderate and would not rise significantly with respect to years Previous, due to the harsh economic situation facing the United States and Europe, its main markets.

It Is here that the country brand becomes a fundamental strategy of exporters to stay competitive abroad.

Another benefit has been that the productive sectors see the country brand as a way not only to sell the image abroad, but to promote responsibilities in the entrepreneurs, as they now consider it necessary to innovate, differentiate the products; Making them add to these major competitive advantages at the global level.

The Costa Rican export sector called for the launching of the country brand, as a tool for commercial use, for more than 10 years. According To Mónica Segnini, president of CADEXCO at the launch of the new brand, on September 3, last.

An example of its benefits in traditional export products is the export of pineapple. According to Abel Chaves, former president of the Board of Directors of the National Chamber of Producers and Exporters of Pineapple (CANAPEP), the sector is reaching the top of the cultivation area of the hand of 1,250 producers, of which 2.8% are large companies. The task now will be to maintain this area of pineapple cultivation so that exports that currently go to the European Union do not fall (52%) and the United States (48%).

For Chaves, the country brand is a «quality seal» that has allowed and would allow to boost the exports of Piñera so that the country will not be reached by its Latin American competitors in the sale of pineapple, including Colombia and Mexico. This would give an added value to the Costa Rican pineapple, as it has environmentally friendly cultivation processes, as well as other practices such as carbon neutrality.

The use of the country brand for exporting and commercial companies will be regulated by a licensing protocol designed by the Costa Rica Technical Standards Institute (Inteco) to verify the correct use of the Country Brand in product and services that are desired Internationalize.

In conclusion, the Country Brand has been generating through its incursion, a wide range of benefits to several economic sectors of the country, because as has been explained earlier, the development of the country brand project is carried out in a way Inter-institutional, in the case of the latter there was participation of the ICT, Ministry of Foreign Trade, promoter of Foreign Trade and Cinde, which makes the country brand become a single conductive thread that allows to generate benefits in the sectors Involved.

In the case of exports, it has been proven that advertising efforts to position Costa Rican products in competitive markets have been fruitful. The main Thing is that export companies are able to identify with the brand.

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