Brand archetypes: discover your unique brand personality and increase your impact

  • Annelieke Boeren
  • 09 / 10 / 2023
Leestijd: 4 min

How do you build a strong brand? And how do you make sure you reach and engage the right audience? Of course, a brand must be distinctive. As well as reliable. But at least as important is the impression you leave behind. And the sharper that impression is, the better. Brand archetypes can help you with that. How? I will explain it to you in this blog.

First of all: a 'brand' is what the public thinks, feels and experiences about a company or organization. So this is purely about perception. That perception is strongly related to the set of human attributes attributed to the company. So: what does the company value, how does it position itself? And can I identify with that, or is it just miles away from me? Just like when choosing friends and partners, people also look for that emotional click with brands.

Check it out for yourself: you can probably name some brands you like. And for which you feel loyalty. Because it suits who you are and what you find important. I myself, for instance, am a fan of Armed Angels. A beautiful clothing brand with a relevant mission, which they also know how to explain to you in very understandable, 'ordinary people's language'. I love it. And it makes me willing to pay that little bit more.

In short: showing character pays off!

Show who you are and what you stand for. That character, that brand personality, is not something you just shrug off: it is you. Yet it is often difficult to express it well and consistently. Then it can help to literally put a face to your brand.

At gr8, we like to use Carl Jung's archetypes. 12 personality types, each with their own values, desires and fears. Each archetype can ultimately be reduced to one deep need, which underlies everything you do. For instance, 'caring for others' (Caregiver), 'becoming wiser' (Sage), or 'making a deep connection with others' (Lover). Armed Angels is a typical 'Hero' brand ('making the world a better place'). Their promise 'We are not here to make fashion, we are here to make change' says it all.

Every person recognises themselves in several archetypes, but there is often one that is dominant -which you say: this is me all over. It works the same way with brands.

Linking your brand to one of these 12 brand archetypes is guaranteed to help you communicate more sharply and consistently. Both in terms of content and tone of voice. A 'Sage', for instance, will be particularly keen to teach the reader something - and uses that as a compass when creating content. And a brand that identifies with the 'Rebel' will express this with a non-conformist and perhaps even slightly provocative communication style. Ass against the manger, flouting the rules, that work. Something the wayward broadcaster Powned has understood perfectly.

Archetypes can also help you position your brand towards new employees, because they explain the essence at once: this is who we are and what drives us.

'No one will follow you if you don't know where you're going' 

- a famous quote by marketing guru Jack Trout, to which we at gr8 like to refer. In other words: show your colours, show what you stand for and what you find important and be consistent in doing so. Because if you do not choose, you will not be chosen. Determining the archetype of your brand is a big step in the right direction.

Could your brand use some focus? We are happy to help!