Telling the story of a country reclaiming itself.
Late last century, Colombia was overwhelmed by narco-terrorism. But by 2005, a major security crackdown and social reforms had cleaned up metropolitan centres and travel destinations.
Despite this, Proexport Colombia – the government agency promoting tourism, investment and trade – still couldn’t convince everyone that Colombia was safe.
Proexport hired Ogilvy PR NY to show the real Colombia to tourists and investors in the United States, Canada and Caribbean. Ogilvy focused on changing perceptions through positive storytelling, creating a news bureau fuelling continuous coverage of Proexport’s three ‘pillars’ – tourism, investment and trade. Ogilvy coached spokespeople from Proexport in all markets and pressed them into meeting international influencers, speaking to high-level media and initiating conferences and seminars.
Ogilvy, and an agency partner, applied this strategy across all three markets and helped launch the international "Colombia is Magical Realism" campaign.
In 2013, Proexport Colombia attracted more FDI and investment projects than ever before. Colombia’s GDP grew 13.1 percent. International business media reported on Proexport for the first time. American, Canadian and Caribbean arrivals grew over 8%.
Foreign visitors to Colombia giving 'business' as the reason for travel grew 18.4%, nearly double the goal. And in 2014, Colombia overtook Argentina as the third-largest economy in Latin America.