UK holds off competition to stay fourth most admired country

The UK has retained its place as the fourth most admired country in the annual Nation Brand Index (NBI).

The UK has also held on to its fifth position as a desirable tourism destination.

The Anholt-GfK Roper NBI lists 50 countries and the survey is based on interviews with 20,000 adults worldwide. It is designed to measure the perception of each nation as if it were a commercial brand.

The United States holds its position as best overall brand, after taking the top slot last year after Barack Obama was elected president. Germany is second and France third.

The UK is ranked seventh for having a rich cultural heritage and but is weak in being rich in natural beauty, rising one place to 23rd. The ranking for “offering a warm welcome” is 13 and tourist body VisitBritain is hoping to improve this ahead of the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Marketing Week columnist Mark Ritson has taken issue with the notion of the NBI and recently said: “Countries are not brands. They are countries. Brand strategy should be reserved for brands.”

Chief executive of tourist body VisitBritain, Sandie Dawe, says: “It is clear that we are retaining our appeal in an increasingly competitive world market. With more governments recognising tourism as a driver of growth and ramping up their international marketing it is striking that our ratings are remaining steady.”

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3711 or email

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here