By Admin posted on November 6, 2018 in Change, Innovation
One of the aspect of brand work we’ve come to see as crucial in our extensive experience of working to affect change, lies in understanding, defining or developing a strong and compelling brand personality. For some brands this may mean building something from scratch that has never previously been done, for others it’s a case of revisiting and revising what already exists, yet for others, it’s about completely revolutionising where the brand has been in the past. Either way, having a well-articulated brand personality that is agreed to and understood by key stakeholders is one of the cornerstones of building clear and cohesive marketing and communications programs.
Here are some exercises that can be truly enlightening to complete when attempting to truly get under the skin of your brand personality.
Do one or do all, but whatever you do, have fun.
Make Like a Paparazzo
We mean this figuratively, not literally, naturally. One thing we can borrow from the tabloid press is its ability to sum up the key personality characteristics of well known public figures. This skill, to be able quickly distil key characteristics is certainly something that can be successfully harnessed in brand work.
One way is to imagine that your brand were personified in the form of one well-known public figure, and think specific about how the known personality characteristics of that person match with specific aspects of the brand. Are they young and flighty or older and knowledgeable? Are they happy-go-lucky, funny or quirky, or are they a more traditional, serious person? Maybe they’re a hybrid of a few personalities?
Another way to think about personifying the brand is to look at who might be a good fit to represent the brand as a spokesperson. Unlike with the previous exercise, the celebrity and the brand sit alongside each other, rather than being considered as one and the same. It’s a subtle difference, but in carry out the exercise, you may find you come up with quite different answers for one than the other.
Another great way to think about the key characteristics of your brand’s personality is to imagine sitting next to it at a dinner party. What kind of dinner guest would your brand be? Are they the sort to talk a mile-a-minute, leaving you to struggle to get in a word in, or would you need to gently tease information from them. Would they crack jokes or veer the conversation onto serious topics? Will they be your new best friend at the end of a three-course meal, or still virtual strangers?
Be a Joker
…or a sage, or a magician, or an outlaw, or a nurse…or any of the twelve Jungian archetypes Jung defined twelve primary types that represent the range of basic human motivations. Each of us tends to have one dominant archetype that dominates our personality. The same can often be said for brands. Identifying which archetype best sums up your brands (and what other archetypes they show signs of) can be a great way to understand past, current and future brand behaviour. Understanding your brand archetype as perceived by past, current and future customers is also a great way to help understand how people relate to and interact with the brand, and what they expect from the brand in given circumstances.
The full list of brand archetypes:
Get in the Mood
Everyone knows the feeling of having an idea in your head that you can “see” in your mind’s eye, but struggling to articulate it in words. Mood boards can be great tools to tease out those ideas in a visual format. Pulling together a mood board of images (digital or hard copy) that represent your brand is an excellent way to develop a visual shorthand of what your brand is all about. This is an especially good tool for visual learners, but even for those who aren’t. When you’re happy with the visual representation you’ve pulled together, you don’t need to stop there. The images you’ve created can be a great springboard to pulling together words that describe the brand personality. Just write what you see.