Spain’s Global Brand Image

To follow on a little from my thoughts about Spain in a new world order in January and the long conversations on Spanish Stereotypes, two new articles published this month talk about Spain’s success and image in a globablized world.

Spain’s Global Brand Image

Whilst Spanish politicians continue to debate whether ZP’s withdrawl of troops from Iraq or the 11-M Madrid train bombings do or don’t affect Spain’s reputation abroad, it seems that those events have had little repercussion in the minds of those countries’ public perceptions.

At the same time, Spain’s big businesses have been doing very well lately. Witness Telefonica in Latin America and Europe, the BBVA bank buying subsidiaries in the US, FCC having its way with the UK’s airport infrastructure and the position of Amancio Ortega’s clothing brand Zara. (Comaprative list of Spanish brands)

The first article, written in Spanish by the Real Instituto Elcano, is an anlaysis of Spain’s image abroad, specifically in the US, Europe and Turkey and is titled: “From the sun to the crescent: the current image of Spain in the US, Europe and Turkey

The second one is the latest 2007 Brandz survey of the top 100 international brands.

1 – Real Instituto Elcano: Spain’s image abroad

  • Spain’s reputation abroad has improved over the last two years
  • Zapatero’s withdrawl of Spanish troops from Iraq hasn’t had any noticeable negative effects on Spain’s reputation
  • Spain has a better standing in Turkey than France does;
  • Spain’s image in Europe has changed from sun & sand to sun, sand & a sound economy ;
  • The article uses three studies as a basis for its analysis: Anholt Nation Brand Index, Transatlantic Trends and the FT/Harris survey;
  • Spain has a strong national brand which has become stronger over the last two years, compared with other countries;
  • Spain is best regarded in Eastern Europe, then the rest of Europe, the US and Turkey;
  • Spain is the third most loved country in the US, alongside Israel, the EU and Germany and only beaten by the UK and Italy;
  • Turkish people don’t seem to be particularly optimistic about any country but Spain is second only to Germany in Turks’ estimation of European countries;
  • Spain has a better reputation than France in Turkey;
  • ZP`s Alliance of Civilizations has probably eased the worsening of Spain’s image in Turkey as opposed to actually improving it and the worsening has been less than for other Western countries or the EU as a whole;
  • Internally, countries can be more or less xenophobic. The list, comparatively from least xenophobic to most xenophobic, goes like this: USA, Germany, Italy, France, UK, Spain, Turkey;
  • Americans appreciate Spain much more than Spanish people appreciate Americans;
  • Spain is the second most appreciated country in the world among Europeans; only Germany scores more points;
  • Spain is the top destination for European work migrants. The top 5 reasons for coming here are ‘better quality of life‘, ‘job satisfaction‘, ‘contact with another culture‘, ‘house prices‘ and ‘the weather‘;
  • The Spanish economy benefits from a very favourable impression in Europeans’ mindsets, coming in 5th in the FT survey behind the UK, Germany, Sweden and Luxembourg. This improved perception could certainly be due to recent corporate movements by Spanish corporate giants;
  • Spain is a possible intermediary between the West and moderate muslim countries;

2 – Brandz: top 100 international brands

  • Banco Santander is Spain’s strongest brand, coming in at nº 47/100 and valued at USD 12,094,000,000. It is the 9th strongest brand in Europe if the UK is excluded but no Spanish brand makes the top 10 if the UK brands are included. Banco Santander is the world’s 10th strongest world financial institution brand;
  • Zara’s brand is valued at USD 6,469,000,000 and is making strong inroads into providing affordable clothing for the new middle class in countries like Brazil, Russia, India and China; Amancio Ortega’s flagship brand is the 3rd most valued clothing brand in the world and is the only other Spanish brand in the top 100 after Banco Santander in 90th place;
  • Movistar, valued at USD 4,686,000,000 is mentioned as having provided innovative new ideas for the whole sector with its “Lend me 2€” campaign and is the 9th most valued telecommunications brand in the world. O2, also owned by Telefonica, is 10th;
  • Cruzcampo (which I always thought was Spanish but in fact now belongs to Heineken) is the 10th strongest beer brand in the world valued at USD 1,084,000,000;
  • No Spanish brands at all in the coffee, car, fast-food, luxury goods, motor fuel, personal care, water or soft drinks sectors;
Matthew Bennett
September 12th, 2008
Blog in English