A host of product categories have come to be strongly associated with a particular country. Think watches, for example, where a connotation to Switzerland is almost immediate. It’s not really a watch unless it has that “Swiss Made” small print on the quadrant. That same psychological effect applies to high performance cars being from Germany and the best fashion coming from Italy or France – in this case, even permeating down to cities like Milan or Paris.
In brand development, country of origin has been shown to have a significant influence on the attitudes and perceptions consumers hold toward a brand. It clues them in on that brand’s quality, performance, or suitability based on the country’s image and stereotypes. And in a world offering increasingly internationalized product selection, country of origin has never been more relevant – so much that some companies even consider it a brand in itself.