NEW research

Covid-19 Study: Impact on Nation Brands

Together with our sister company, Bloom Consulting, we conducted a detailed study of the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on Nation Brands.

Our main aim was to better understand the impact of Covid-19 on national brands and all aspects of Bloom Consulting Brand Wheel©. Furthermore, to better understand how the government’s crisis management of Covid-19 affects perceptions and brands. We propose a new concept called “Brand-Nought” (BO). It can be used to measure the impact of the crisis on tourism, investment, talent, exports, and general reputation.

What is the B0 for this crisis?

Countries need to monitor their Brand Nought – the ratio between positive and negative perceptions, based on government actions in response to the crisis. The global average for the Covid-19 crisis is B0= -1,8. This means that 1 negative perception can only be neutralised by 1,8 positive ones. If a Country exceeds its Brand-Nought, there will be a positive impact on its Nation Brand.

In this study, we are basically reframing the way we analyse crises. Every country has its own B0, therefore, each country should compare its Covid-19 crisis management perceptions to the country’s B0 to assess the impact on its Nation Brand.

Among more than the 140 Countries mentioned, the research reveals that the worst-performing Countries captured more attention than the Countries that managed it well.

The Brand Nought affects all of the Nation Brand dimensions in a negative way. However, the negative impact affects the willingness to visit, live, study or buy at a different level of intensity. As we found out in the study, the most “sensitive” or affected dimensions are study and work. On the other side, tourism and buy products are far more resilient to the Covid-19 crisis than the rest of the dimensions.

Jose Filipe Torres, Partner of D2 – Analytics and CEO of Bloom Consulting, presented the research in a webinar on the City Nation Place on May 27, 2020. Other leading practitioners in the field of national brands, such as Rebecca Smith, Director of New Zealand Story, and Niall Gibbons, CEO of Tourism, also participated in the webinar. You can view the recorded version of the webinar here.

The methodology of the study

To understand the different points of view and the new tourist behaviors, we launched an international survey using 4,000 people from around the world including the USA, Italy, Australia and China. All national opinions were removed from the sample population of the 140 countries mentioned.

Simultaneously, we analysed global online searches from every country in the world using our D2 – Digital Demand software. The extensive amount of data collected has provided us with a unique perspective on the recent online behaviours and trends these last few months.

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