The Importance of Brand Archetypes
Archetypes are distinguished — not invented — by Carl Jung. What Jung found was that whether you’re an Indonesian hill tribe or a Hollywood blockbuster, the same characters appear in the stories of any culture.
What’s interesting about that is it doesn’t matter what part of the world — race, colour, creed, or religion — we still have the same archetypes pop up.
So it seems like humans have this innate sorting system of how they relate to other people. If they relate to other people the same way, we substitute brands for people, and we get relationships.
Characters like the Sage, the Explorer, the Regular, the Creator, the Lover, the Caregiver — these are innate sorting in your own brain.
That means if a brand can attach to one of these existing archetypes — and we have 12 in our model here — there’s a chance of the brand being related to and therefore being remembered, recalled, and trusted. Consistency of that relationship becomes key.
How to Use an Archetype Card Set
First, figure out the experience you want your customers to have at the end of the day. And then we need to do particular things that come around the way we construct the customer journey.
But the origin of the question starts on who we need to be as a brand. We get really clear on who we can be, that’s one archetype card with a clarification of what that archetype means for you. There are different types of heroes — we have a Robin Hood, we have a Superman, any sort of Hero of the day, so we get a short-term, stereotypical nuances but attached to a deep archetype or rich, enduring archetype. It means the brand knows who it is, and that means all communications that it has, the way when somebody joins that brand they know who to represent in the public domain, means that we get that consistency of brand.