Picture: Esa Alexander/The Times
Picture: Esa Alexander/The Times

To grow the country’s tourism economy it’s vital for SA to be marketed. Brand SA, the country’s official marketing agency, has a collection of professional resources available to the public at no cost that can align brands to the brand of the nation.

Brand SA Acting CMO Sithembile Ntombela says these tools include the country logo, guidelines for marketing and event branding, as well as over 3,000 high-quality images.

“As a nation, it is up to all of us to help build and maintain a strong brand reputation for SA and ensure a consistent and distinctive image for the country,” Ntombela says.

Brand SA has also developed a knowledge hub, Nation Brand Knowledge, to place SA in a more competitive position. Nation Brand Knowledge is a collection of content that touches on various subjects relevant to stakeholders in the trade, business and investment industries.

In 2015 Brand SA, partnering with the Marketing Association of SA and Vega School, launched the country’s first Nation Brand Masterclass. Ntombela says it aims to create a more formal framework in which to provide marketers and communicators with skills to help them profile SA and the unique features of the SA brand more effectively. The Masterclass is open to both the private and public sector.

The big take-out

As SA’s official marketing agency, Brand SA has an online toolkit and knowledge hub available to the public to help train and guide all stakeholders to market the national brand consistently and grow SA’s tourism industry.

Training is offered free of charge and has been very well received locally and internationally by academia, says Ntombela.  Previously, provinces and metros were provided with training to equip people to promote a cohesive SA brand when they attend international trade tours. The Masterclass brings an additional level to this training, “a structured approach to impart knowledge and empower other marketers with new and different ways to profile the country brand,” Ntombela says.

If South Africans have the knowledge and tools, they become empowered to promote the country brand effectively, Ntombela says.