Types of BRANDING - ARCHETYPES
Your brand, different to your logo, helps differentiate your business from competitors. It is what your customers experience when they interact with your business, products, services, and employees, and only exists in your customers’ minds, while also your promise to your customers of what they will experience.
The purpose of branding is in establishing a market presence, which has the capacity to attract and retain loyal customers, based on the creation of meaningful stakeholder relationships. The retention of these customers is becoming more difficult in this expectant and transient modern world, where people want everything now and for the most costeffective option that they can get it. This requires the vigilance of brand managers who champion the brand and its evolution, activities and function across medium, community and device.
Once your brand is created, it needs to be monitored and managed to ensure the parameters and guidelines outlined are being adhered to. As difficult as this is, it is imperative to ensure the brand is not losing potency and that it remains the focal point.
An archetypeis a universally familiar character or situation that transcends time, place, culture, gender and age. It represents an eternal truth. - Jon Howard-Spink
Today’s brands are increasingly defined by their interactions and relationships, where the power shift has moved, allowing customers and consumers the demand for greater accountability and integrity from businesses. In house, workers are craving a deeper sense of meaning from their careers and companies are continually seeking ways to achieve more powerful and resonant brand engagements. Archetypal wisdom in branding therefore facilitates a more authentic, holistic and human way of being in business, where its benefits lie in increases of valuation, attracting and retaining stakeholders, guides brand culture strategy, embeds brand identity and aligns brand with culture. Today, a brand has to exist in a playing field that has grown greatly and become multifaceted and multidimensional.
Based on Swiss psychologist Carl Jung’s theory that humans have a basic tendency to use symbolism to understand concepts, Jung identified 12 archetypes each with a powerful identity, its own set of characteristics, values, attitudes and behaviours. Such characteristics can create a powerful emotional connection inspiring loyalty and even devotion, a powerful Marketing and Advertising tool. When archetypes are applied to branding, they cover a broad range of iconic characters and characteristics; everything from the good guy (“Hero”) to the bad guy (“Rebel”); the safety and security of the “Caregiver” to the wild adventure and excitement of the “Explorer”, or the young and pure (“Innocent”) to the wise or savvy elder statesman (“Sage”). Moreover, they are divided into the four basic human drives, The Humanistic Theory of Motivation, built upon Abraham Maslow's hierarchy of needs, bridging between the product/service offer and how/why people make decisions.
Archetypes mediate between products and customer motivation by providing an intangible experience of meaning. - Mark and Pearson
The Innocent Archetype of Branding's goal is to promote happiness, striving to be good, pure, young, optimistic, simple, moral, romantic, loyal. Can be perceived as naive or boring, but popular with brands with strong values, seen as trustworthy, reliable and honest, associated with morality, good virtues, simplicity, and can be nostalgic.
The Regular Guy or Gal
This Archetype has a goal to belong or connect with others. Its characteristics are down to earth, supportive, faithful, folksy, person next door and connects. It can however lack a distinctive identity and blend in too much, but its Marketing niche is common touch, solid virtues, and a sense of belonging. This archetype relates to people on a “real” level, evolving around everyday life activities and routines.
The Hero Archetype of Branding helps to improve the world, as courageous, bold, honourable, strong, confident, and inspirational. Sometimes perceived as arrogant or aloof, it can make a positive mark on the world, solve major problems or enable/inspire others to do so.
With an aim to make dreams come true and create something special, the Magician Archetype is a visionary, charismatic, imaginative, idealistic, spiritual brand archetype that helps people transform their world, inspire change, and expand consciousness.
The Jester Archetype brings joy to the world, with its fun, light-hearted, mischievous and irreverent traits. In contrast, it can be seen as frivolous or disrespectful, but it helps people have a good time or enjoy what they are doing, allowing people to be more impulsive and spontaneous. The jester wants “enjoyment”, a true a hedonist; its only mission in life is to enjoy it.
The Sage Archetype of Branding helps the world gain wisdom and insight. Characterised by knowledge, trust, wisdom and intelligence, it is a thoughtful, analytical, mentoring and advisory brand archetype, that can be viewed as overly contemplative or too opinionated. The Sage archetype helps people to better understand the world, provide practical information and analysis.
ARCHETYPES OF ORDER
The Caregiver Archetype is a a brand that cares and protects, is maternal, nurturing, selfless, generous and compassionate. Sometimes taken for granted or exploited, it does help people care for themselves, serve the public through health care, education or aid programs. The Caregiver archetype is the “parent”, empathising and wanting to help and protect their clients, with a very positive message, exuding an aura of selflessness.
The Creator Archetype something with meaning and enduring value, is imaginative, artistic, inventive, entrepreneur and non-conformist. As a marketing niche it is visionary and helps customers express or create, fostering their imagination. The creator archetype wants to innovate, and is non-conforming by nature, empowering its customers to use their creativity by selling them a world of possibilities.
The Explorer Archetype finds fulfillment through discovery and new experiences, characterised by restlessness, adventurousness, ambition and independence. It’s exciting and risk-taking marketing niche may not however fit into the mainstream.
ARCHETYPES OF CHANGE
The Ruler Archetype has a goal to control and create order from chaos, “Ruler” brands are leaders, responsible, organized and role models. The can lack a common connection, or be too authoritative or controlling, but restore order and organisation, and create more stability and security in a chaotic world. This archetype wants to “Rule them all”, sharing a narrative that demonstrates why they’re the leader of their industry.
The Lover Archetype creates or suggests intimacy, inspiring love. It is passionate, sensual, intimate, romantic, warm, committed and idealistic, but therefore can be perceived as too selfless or not grounded enough. It helps people to feel appreciated, belong, connect, enjoy and build relationships. As the “lover” wants intimacy, a company that identifies itself with this archetype will most likely use suggestive imagery to evoke sensations.
The Outlaw or Rebel
This Archetype breaks the rules and fights authority. By nature, it is rebellious, iconoclastic, wild, and paving the way for change. Although it can be taken too far and seen in a negative way, it is an agent of change and advocate for the disenfranchised, allowing people to vent or break with conventions.
The point of archetypes in branding is to tap into deep and primal human needs, desires and emotions. When used effectively, they can bring a story to life in a way that creates magnetic attraction; an elusive piece that builds lasting value. As a company, business or organisation is not actually a person, it still has a distinct character embodied in its brand and culture. An archetypal approach to branding, can help to set the stage for the kinds of experiences and relationships you have (or want) with your customers. Carl Jung, in his evaluation of this concept, believed that archetypes are rooted in our collective unconscious, shaping personality. They represent a pattern of ideas and way of thinking that is consistent across time, generations and cultures, symbolizing basic human motivations, meanings, values and traits. Similarly, they help us understand what motivates an individual and the universal patterns of behaviour, which in branding can help individuals and companies stay true to their mission and brand promise. Simply put, if a brand is about what you stand for, then embodying your organisation's archetype can guide brand development and connect people to your organisation, in subtle yet powerful ways, creating loyalty with all stakeholders, including buyers, suppliers, shareholders, and employees. Archetypes can facilitate the experiencing of a brand and why it attracts certain customers.
Using archetypes can shift your brand from push to pull, from messaging to values, from control to expansion and move your engagements from transactions toward relationships. The authentic application of archetypes also helps your align brand and culture — your behaviours and being. Archetypal approaches to branding can result in a source of differentiation in a competitive landscape, providing a springboard for brand development, instilling humanity, and forming a basis for creating a common language. Because they create an instant emotional impact triggering instant affinity, branding archetypes increase trust as they are grounded in a consistent and enduring expression of meaning, while activating a powerful experience of resonance and attraction. They innately resolve brand and culture inconsistencies, enhance trust and relatedness and increase a company’s impact and bottom-line. This form of branding, when used in the design of a company’s a marketing strategy can help define a message and communication strategy, exploring a brand’s identity and make it stand out from the rest.