Rebuilding Brand America: What We Must Do to Restore Our Reputation and Safeguard the Future of American Business Abroad

By Dick Martin | Go to book overview

INTRODUCTION:
THE ANTI-AMERICAN CENTURY

“The terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001 sharply punctuated the end of the American century. Indeed, the era we are now entering may well come to be recalled as ‘the anti-American century.’”1

—Ivan Krastev, research director, Remarque Institute, New York University

THE WORLD, WE’RE TOLD, IS FLAT. IT’S ALSO TIPPING, AND NOT in America’s favor. Pollsters tell us that United States’ foreign policy— especially in the Middle East—accounts for 35 percent of anti-American feelings around the world.2 Whether the true proportion is 35 percent or 75 percent is small comfort for U.S.headquartered businesses, which once happily rode on America’s coattails but have grown tired of recent bumps. The question businesses should be asking is how much blame they share for the balance of the ill feeling and whether they are somehow contributing to the tilt.

Those are the issues explored in this book, along with best practices in dealing with them. But first, I should make it clear that I am neither a foreign policy expert nor an economist; I spent most of my career in the worlds of advertising, public relations, and brand management. This book starts from the premise that America is a “brand,” not in the sense that the name itself has commercial value (though it does), but because the notion of America occupies a special place in the hearts and minds of people around the world. American businesses share that space and, if it has become a bit shabby and less welcoming

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Rebuilding Brand America: What We Must Do to Restore Our Reputation and Safeguard the Future of American Business Abroad
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Introduction- The Anti-American Century 1
  • Part One 13
  • Chapter 1- Ilting at Windmills 15
  • Chapter 2- The Queen of Branding 24
  • Chapter 3- Charlotte in Wonderland 34
  • Chapter 4- The Prince of Pollsters 43
  • Chapter 5- Measuring Distance 51
  • Part Two 61
  • Chapter 6- Why Do They Hate Us? 63
  • Chapter 7- The Pictures in Their Heads 72
  • Chapter 8- The Business of America 84
  • Chapter 9- The Power of Brands 95
  • Chapter 10- Brand America 105
  • Chapter 11- Ceos' in Handcuffs 115
  • Chapter 12- Plague or Paranoia? 125
  • Part Three 139
  • Chapter 13- in Search of Anti-Anti-Americans 141
  • Chapter 14- The Path to Happy 150
  • Chapter 15- Sink Roots, Don't Just Spread Branches 162
  • Chapter 16- Go Glocal 175
  • Chapter 17- Share Your Customers' Cares 187
  • Chapter 18- Stiff-Necked, Tree-Hugging Critics 201
  • Chapter 19- Share Your Customers' Dreams 213
  • Chapter 20- Myth America 223
  • Chapter 21- A Lever to Move the World 233
  • Chapter 22- Waging Peace 246
  • Coda the Last Three Feet 257
  • A Note about the Endnotes 262
  • Notes 263
  • Acknowledgments 289
  • Index 291
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