Your Brand Persona

If your brand were a person—or type of person—who would it be?

Let me ask you some questions about the picture, above:

  • Which one of these two gentlemen drives a Lexus? Which one drives a Mini Cooper?
  • Which on of these guys uses an IBM computer? Which one uses an Apple Macintosh?
  • Which one shops at Abercrombie & Fitch and which one shops at Van Heusen?

Now, think of how those brands are personified in their marketing approaches. Lexus and IBM are conservative and traditional brands, while Mini Cooper and Apple computer are edgy and contemporary brands. You get the idea. When you know the persona of your brand, you can communicate it through all your marketing touch points.

Another way to look at brand persona is to consider the necktie. A necktie can speak volumes about the person wearing it. Is it sophisticated? Fashionable? Obnoxious? Reserved? Flamboyant? Playful? If your business were a necktie, what kind of necktie would it be? Once you’ve arrived at that answer, you can begin to communication in that persona.

Brand Archetypes
When your brand is associated with an archetype—a universally recognized character or ideal—it will be much stronger.

Think of the characters in any great myth or fantasy—Lord of the Rings or Star Wars, for instance. These archetypes show up with regularity in classic forms of storytelling. What stories define your company? What archetype are you living out? What is your unfolding myth?

Here are some common brand archetypes:

Orphan
Wanderer
Warrior
Altruist
Innocent
Magician
Ruler
Creator
Regular Guy or Gal
Jester
Lover
Caregiver
Outlaw
Sage
Explorer
Hero

As you think about your brand persona—and about which archetype most closely resembles your business—make sure it’s an accurate reflection of your company culture, your mission and vision, your values, and your one-thing essence. Like your voice and tone, make sure you are consistent in how you present your brand persona in all your marketing and communications and, of course, how you treat customers, solve problems, and train employees.

More on your voice and tone here

Learn how Storytelling can support your brand personality

Return to Brand Personality page