Branding is both a science and an art. As humans, we’re naturally drawn to a certain personality (usually similar to our own) and this is one of the reasons why you may chose to favour one brand over another.
You may not realise it, but just like a human, it’s highly likely that your brand already has its own set of personality traits too, which have been cemented right from the beginning naturally as it has become more established. Delving deep down and understanding your brand’s true identity and personality will not only help your brand develop in terms of how it looks – and by this we mean your logo, designs and the colours – but it will also help your brand’s tone and how you communicate with your audiences.
The sooner you can begin living as your brand and building a creative marketing strategy with your identity as the foundation, the more you will engage with consumers emotions and leave a lasting impression in your audience’s minds – regardless of whether you’re a small business or a big company. Defining these personality traits through brand archetypes can enable powerful brand positioning, and allow you and your business to tap into specific core desires, drives, fears and motivations all humans have which can help your customers and potential customers understand who you are as a brand, what you stand for and how you can help them succeed.
So what are archetypes? Put simply, archetypes are defined as a very typical example of a certain person or thing. Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung introduced archetypes more than half a century ago as characters that provide emotional prompts to fundamental human desires. In more recent times, leadership consultant, speaker and author Dr. Carol Pearson has continued to expand on Jung’s work into a more complex approach which looks at breaking the 60 archetypal attributes down to just four which truly define your brand.
Each brand archetype is associated with specific motivations, values, drivers and attributes. There’s 12 core archetypes in total, which are:
1. The Caregiver is moved by compassion, generosity and selflessness to help and serve others.
2. The Every Person believes in the inherent worth and dignity of all, expecting very little from life.
3. The Hero is tough and courageous, overcomes tremendous obstacles and persists in difficult times.
4. The Innocent is a spontaneous, trusting child who always sees the bright side of a situation.
5. The Explorer moves past the known to explore new, uncharted territories.
6. The Rebel is a rule breaker and catalyst for change.
7. The Lover lives to experience pleasure, achieve intimacy and follow bliss.
8. The Creator fosters imaginative endeavors, aiming to express and turn away from mediocrity.
9. The Jester lives to have a good time, making the most mundane experiences something fun.
10. The Sage seeks the truths that will set us free in seeing the world objectively and providing course-corrective solutions.
11. The Magician seeks out the fundamental laws of science and metaphysics to understand how to transform situations.
12. The Ruler inspires us to take responsibility for our own lives by creating environments that invite gifts and perspectives of all concerned.
Take Lego for example. As a creator, the brand enables anyone who buys its products to be exactly that – creators. Customers become inventive and expressive while maintaining a sense of stability and control. Allowing its customers to play out their imaginings. Lego is a visionary, an entrepreneur and a storyteller as well as a creator, and these four archetypes are what makes the product, and its marketing activities stand out.
This same principle was applied to our own brand – we established that we’re a creative bunch, a mentor, and alchemists, which proved to be the foundation of our brand, and from this The Creative Alchemist was born! As mentors we draw on our knowledge and experience to act as a trusted guide, seeking to teach and inspire our clients. As a creator we follow up a rational systematic approach with innovative thinking, distilling complex messages and bringing clarity through bold, imaginative and emotive visual expressions. The Alchemist merges the logic of process and the magic of creativity, effecting a positive change in how clients brands are perceived.
More often than not, you’re going to need a helping hand to define your brand and take it right back to the drawing board. Here at The Creative Alchemist we offer brand workshops to help you look at your brand with the right balance of empathy, objectivity and truth. Defining your brand’s archetype is an exciting journey which will lead to more effective marketing and PR strategies, as well as brand activities and design work.