Developing a strong brand requires developing a strong brand personality. Just like people, your business’s brand has a personality. This determines how customers connect with you and whether or not they want to do business with you and as such, brand archetypes are important part of understanding your brand personality.
Knowing which archetype your business is often subjective but help is at hand! Over the past decade, many of us have gotten to know the various unique characters within the Marvel Cinematic Universe and specifically, the Avengers. Let’s check out the brand archetypes through the attributes of our favourite Marvel characters. Do you recognise yourself?
Here are the 12 basic archetypes a brand can assume according to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
A super brief history of Jungian Archetypes
One of my favourite things about being a Marketer is how your mind reacts to the world around you. Throughout my career I have developed new senses. As a designer my brain reformats every menu in a restaurant. As an information architect I judge every establishment based on their website user journey.
Once I entered this new phase of brand awareness I watched Big Brother and thought of George Orwell. I recall watching Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and emerging afterwards with a greater understanding of the seven Chakras of the human spirit.
To many cultures Chakras are responsible for disturbing the life energy. For one incredibly evolved gentleman called Carl Jung, it was the basis of his work in archetypes.
When thinking about some of your favourite brand narratives, you will likely begin to see similar characters in each, regardless of genre or medium. Think of the wilting detective using alcohol to drown his sorrows; the quirky romantic who just can’t do anything right; the action hero with a troubled past. You get the idea. Well, Carl Jung understood that the reason why some characters are so immediately and distinctly recognisable to us is because they are part of our shared collective unconscious.
What does this mean for your business?
Jungian archetypes play an important part in the history of psychoanalysis, whose other and more famous founding father was Sigmund Freud. More recently, these have been adopted by us branding experts because they offer a shortcut to the collective identities that surround brand personality. Through the use of the Jungian model of collective social understanding, these can help both large and small businesses deftly and directly convey their purpose and/or core values in such a way as to be instantly identifiable and relatable.
Although cultural differences are important, archetypes are a powerful way of establishing a sense of consistency and cohesion between your brand, your messaging and your audience. Helping you to clearly define your brand characteristics and vision, picking an archetype will anchor you to a set of personality traits that ensures you remain faithful to your brand’s character and build a presence that audiences can come to expect and identify with.