How brand archetypes can shape the brand role and personality

Posted on Posted in How to Guide for Marketers

Brand archetypes have done a fantastic job in borrowing from the archetypes of psychology. brand archetypesThe 12 different choices can help brands think about what role they want their brand to play, with various word choices to help drive your overall brand idea.

The brand idea blueprint

Let me back you up, before we get into the role of archetypes in the brand discussion. I created a brand idea blueprint, which has five areas that surround the brand idea. 

On the internal brand soul side, describe the products and services, as well as the cultural inspiration, which is the internal rallying cry to everyone who works on the brand. On the external brand reputation side, define the ideal consumer reputation and the reputation among necessary influencers or partners. The brand role acts as a bridge between the internal and external sides. 

  • Products and services: What is the focused point of difference your products or services can win on because they meet the consumer’s needs and separate your brand from competitors?
  • Consumer reputation: What is the desired reputation of your brand, which attracts, excites, engages, and motivates consumers to think, feel, and purchase your brand? 
  • Cultural inspiration: What is the internal rallying cry that reflects your brand’s purpose, values, motivations, and will inspire, challenge, and guide your culture?  
  • Influencer reputation: Who are the key influencers and potential partners who impact the brand? What is their view of the brand, which would make them recommend or partner with your brand? 
  • Brand role (archetype): What is the link between the internal soul and the external reputation?

Brand Idea

Using archetypes to determine the brand role

Borrowing from the world of psychology, where they use personality archetypes to describe people, we can use brand archetypes to help you figure our the role of your brand, which adds to your brand idea. When a brand offers spiritual, freedom or knowledge they fit with the explorer, sage or innocent archetypes. Brands delivering stability, structure and control fit with the ruler, creator or caregiver. Brands that take risks, create an impact or reach for achievement, they fit with the hero, rebel or magician. Then, brands that focus on belonging or connections, they may look to everyman, lover or jester.

Types of Archetypes

  • Creator: The artist and dreamers, who are imaginative, expressive and innovative. They believe they can see a better future.
  • Ruler: Industry leader, who are confident, responsible and authoritative. They promise power, control and stability to their consumers.
  • Caregiver: The helping hand, who is selfless, empathetic and nurturing. They offer protection, safety and support.
  • Everyman: The approachable brand who is down-to-earth, dependable and honest. They offer a sense of belonging and comfort.
  • Jester: The carefree brand who is joyful, carefree and unusual. They give consumers permission to have fun and be happy.
  • Lover: The idealistic dreamer who is passionate, magnetic and committed. They exude passion and create desire with their consumers.
  • Innocent: The romantic dreamer brands, who is optimistic, wholesome and pure. They want a safer and more beautiful world.
  • Sage: Trusted advisor and teacher, who is wise, articulate and open-minded. They promise wisdom, wanting to help their followers.
  • Explorer: The self-discovery brand, who is worldly, independent, and purpose-driven. They promise freedom, innovation and experiences.
  • Magician: The visionary brand who is unrelenting, driven and charismatic. They offer a transformative knowledge and new experiences.
  • Rebel: The anti-establishment brand who is unconventional, defiant and free-spirited. The promise of a disruptive revolution.
  • Hero: The winner brand, who is determined, skillful, and selfless. They fight off the enemy with the promise of triumph and success.

Here are the examples for some of the world’s most famous brands.

brand archetypes

And, for B2B brands, here are some examples to show how this model works equally well for B2B.

brand archetypes

How to find your brand idea 

Step 1: Keywords brainstorm for each of the five areas

With a cross-functional team working on the brand, start off with a brainstorm of keywords for each of the five areas around the brand idea. Expose the team to the work you have done on the brand positioning statement, including details on the target profile, consumer benefits ladder work, and the consumer benefits sort. Ask participants to bring their knowledge, wisdom, and opinions from where they sit within the organization. 

The first step is generating 15-20 words that describe each of the five areas.      

brand idea

Step 2: Turn keywords into key phrases for each of the five areas

Next, get the team to vote to narrow down the list to the best 3-5 words for each section. You will begin to see certain themes and keywords. Take those selected words and build phrases to summarize each section.

Step 3: Summarize it all to create a brand idea

Once you have phrases for all five areas, the team should feel inspired to use their creative energy to come up with the brand idea. Find a summary statement that captures everything around the circle. Try to get a few different options for the brand idea you can test with both consumers and employees. 

Here’s how the brand map comes together:

Brand Idea

And here is an example for a B2B brand:

Brand Idea

To back up and learn about brand positioning, click on this link below:

How to build a brand positioning statement


To learn more about this type of thinking, you should explore my new book, Beloved Brands.

With Beloved Brands, you will learn everything you need to know so you can build a brand that your consumers will love.

You will learn how to think strategically, define your brand with a positioning statement and a brand idea, write a brand plan everyone can follow, inspire smart and creative marketing execution and analyze the performance of your brand through a deep-dive business review.

Beloved Brands book

To order the e-book version or the paperback version from Amazon, click on this link:

If you use Kobo, you can find Beloved Brands in over 30 markets using this link:

And if you are in India, you can use this link to order:

Beloved Brands: Who are we?

At Beloved Brands, our purpose is to help brands find a new pathway to growth. We believe that the more love your brand can generate with your most cherished consumers, the more power, growth, and profitability you will realize in the future.

We think the best solutions are likely inside you already, but struggle to come out. Our unique playbook tools are the backbone of our workshops. We bring our challenging voice to help you make decisions and refine every potential idea.

We start by defining a brand positioning statement, outlining the desired target, consumer benefits and support points the brand will stand behind. And then, we build a brand idea that is simple and unique enough to stand out in the clutter of the market, motivating enough to get consumers to engage, buy and build a loyal following with your brand.

We will help you write a strategic brand plan for the future, to get everyone in your organization to follow. It starts with an inspiring vision that pushes your team to imagine a brighter future. We use our strategic thinking tools to help you make strategic choices on where to allocate your brand’s limited resources.

Our brand playbook methodology will challenge you to unlock future growth for your brand

  1. Our deep-dive assessment process will give you the knowledge of the issues facing your brand, so you can build a smart plan to unleash future growth.
  2. Find a winning brand positioning statement that motivates consumers to buy, and gives you a competitive advantage to drive future growth.
  3. Create a brand idea to capture the minds and hearts of consumers, while inspiring and focusing your team to deliver greatness on the brand’s behalf.
  4. Build a brand plan to help you make smart focused decisions, so you can organize, steer, and inspire your team towards higher growth.
  5. Advise on advertising, to find creative that drives branded breakthrough and use a motivating messaging to set up long-term brand growth.
  6. Our brand training program will make your brand leaders smarter, so you have added confidence in their performance to drive brand growth.

To learn more about our coaching, click on this link: Beloved Brands Strategic Coaching

To learn more about our training programs, click on this link: Beloved Brands Training

If you need our help, email me at or call me at 416 885 3911

You have my personal promise to help you solve your brand building challenges. I will give you new thinking, so you can unlock future growth for your brand.

Graham Robertson signature