A National Brand’s roundtable that was held in Gaborone last week highlighted the importance of an effective national brand, saying it is a key enabler of socio-economic development through stimulation of investment and revenue generation.
Addressing the media last week, the Minister of Investment, Trade and Industry, Vincent Seretse, emphasised the importance of branding, noting that branding was about creating unique identity, positioning products and services as well as distinguishing the offering from those of competitors. “Branding helps organisations and management team to implement the long-term vision, create unique positions in the market place and add to the competitiveness of a company,” he added.
He also noted that in the modern and ordinary societies, individuals use branding to identify their belongings from the rest and create a sense of belonging and pride.
The minister also explained that branding goes way beyond just a logo or graphic element, as corporations and individuals around the world are increasingly becoming aware of the enhanced value which branding strategies can provide for an organisation.
For her part, the founder of the Masire-Mwamba Foundation, Mmasekgoa Masire-Mwamba, said that they had a successful roundtable which had extremely high level of engagement.
“We had a constructive and robust engagement regarding branding, as we celebrate the year 2016, we see the brand working for us if you look at how the
The Masire-Mwamba Foundation organised the roundtable.
She noted that Batswana had not taken advantage and played part in the brand of the country as they looked at it as government’ s thing. It was stated that while government is often the initial promoter of a national brand, corporate and individual Batswana have a key role in maintaining the country’s global image through taking ownership of and living the values of the national brand.
“Branding is an ongoing process, hence why reviewing, measuring and assessing impact is important,” he said. “Brand is a necessary investment for the country, corporate organisations and individuals.”
The roundtable, which brought together more than 80 people, was designed to enable participants to share their experiences about the value of an effective national brand and explore ways in which Botswana’s brand could be supported and promoted.
Significant players in the regional, national public and private sector branding arenas from South Africa and Zambia shared experiences during the roundtable which included raising awareness of Botswana’s national brand and its importance in promoting Botswana’s economic and social position globally.