An Interview with Joanna Landau, Founder and CEO, and Eden Dvir Zano, Chief Business Officer.
What is Vibe Israel?
Vibe Israel is a Tel Aviv – based nonprofit organization sharing Israel’s story with the world. As the experts in branding and marketing Israel, we lead projects that strengthen Israel's global image, so that people actively choose to engage with it: as a business partner, a travel destination, and for cultural inspiration. Our vision is for Israel to strategically manage its global reputation, for the benefit of all its stakeholders.
Can you brand a country?
Absolutely! Countries are like people; they have a personality and a story that is unique just to them. Country Branding, which borrows tools and techniques from commercial branding, is the art of ensuring that when you hear the name of a country, the first thing that pops into your mind - the emotion or perception - is the desired one. After all, if you don’t actively manage your own brand, someone else might do it for you, and for their own purposes.
Great technology is not unique to Israel, but an entrepreneurial mindset, resilience, and spirit cannot be taught; it’s inherent to who we are as Israelis and manifests itself in everything we do - well beyond technology.
Why is it necessary and how does it work?
Most countries engage in country branding efforts to boost their economy (typically through investment, exports, talent attraction and tourism) and bolster national pride. For Israel, country branding has additional benefits: A strong brand protects in times of crises, which are unavoidable for Israel, and finding what unites us and makes us proud of our country and people is the foundation of a strong, longlasting relationship between Israel and the Jewish Diaspora.
Similarly to commercial branding and marketing, the process begins with a situational
analysis of global perceptions about the country, and continues with identifying the country’s target audiences and defining the country’s USP as compared to other countries that may have similar offerings. The next step is to engage in never-ending marketing efforts to promote the country’s story through a variety of marketing
channels such as: influencer marketing, digital campaigns, brand ambassadors, digital assets, and much more.
Speaking of USPs, what’s Israel’s Unique Selling Proposition?
Since the book “Start-Up Nation” was published in 2009 (by Dan Senor and Saul Singer) offering a catchy slogan and inspiring story about what Israel contributes to the world, in the last decade, the Israeli tech sector has gone from strength to strength, establishing itself as a global leader in arguably the most important sectors in the post-pandemic era: cyber security, health-tech, artificial intelligence, enterprise software, food-tech, and clean-tech.
Great technology is not unique to Israel, but an entrepreneurial mindset, resilience, and spirit cannot be taught; it’s inherent to who we are as Israelis and manifests itself in everything we do -well beyond technology. We are a problem-solving society, committed to getting things done, and most importantly, we are a warm and inviting community. When you do business with us, you become much more than a business
partner - you become family. In short, we are an optimistic nation of dreamers and doers, making our mark in the world!
How is Vibe Israel elevating Israel’s brand in the world?
We work with Israel’s stakeholders to support them in their storytelling and story-sharing efforts, providing tools and messaging, training and guidance for how to share Israel’s story in One Voice. We are specialists in influencer marketing and have generated over a billion positive mentions about Israel online.
In 2022, Vibe Israel is excited to launch an initiative to rebrand Israel’s business offering to the world, in partnership with the Israeli government and private sector. Together, we can extend Israel’s success story well beyond the investment and tech community and reach the masses with a powerful message about what Israel has to offer them and why they should want to engage with us.
Joanna Landau, Founder and CEO, Vibe Israel, moved to Israel when she was
5 years old. After serving in the IDF, she earned her BA and MA degrees at
Cambridge University. Joanna also holds an MBA, cum laude, from Reichmann
University. She worked as a lawyer, transitioned quickly into business, and then
she found her true passion: For over a decade, Joanna has been changing
hearts and minds about Israel, through the nonprofit she founded, Vibe Israel.
Joanna is a governor of Tel Aviv University, a member of the International
Education Committee of Taglit-Birthright and the Advisory Committee of
Innovation Without Boarders, and a Director of Tel Aviv Global & Tourism. In
2015 she was shortlisted for the Rappaport Prize for a Change Making Woman,
and in 2017, Forbes Israel named Joanna as one of the fifty most influential
women in Israel.
Eden Dvir Zano, Chief Business Officer, joined Vibe Israel to lead the initiative
to rebrand Israel's business offering to the world in partnership with the Israeli
government. She began her career at Deloitte, the leading professional services
firm in the world, initially as the Marketing Manager of the High-Tech Industry,
where she uplifted the company's position by leveraging elite industry
relationships with the Israeli Ecosystem. After three years, Eden was promoted
to manage the marketing & business development team of Industries &
Functions, in this position, she led the firm's marketing strategy and managed
the comprehensive marketing aspects of the firm's M&As processes. Eden
managed the 'CEOs of the Future Program' during her years at Deloitte, a
mentoring program for outstanding high-school students. In 2018 Eden joined
LABS as the Marketing Director, where she led the launch of the LABS TLV, a
premium shared office space, home to one of the most creative, innovative, and
forward-thinking tech communities in Israel.
Photos by Shani Sadicario