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Branding Strategy: Creating a Powerful Brand Using Archetypes

Oct 12, 2007
Have you ever noticed that certain movies, books, or songs seem to instantly touch a cord in you? You naturally resonate with the characters. Their story is one that in some way, you feel you've lived yourself.

The same is true for a successful brand. It's not just a fancy logo that sparks recognition. It's the emotional appeal that it creates. A brand rich with personality and magnetism tugs at our heart, stirs our imagination or tickles our funny bone.

Doing good work and being reliable are worthy characteristics. But let's face it, it's charisma and personality that make a person and their business succeed. That's why I include the ancient power of archetypes in my branding strategy to help my clients create their brand.

What is an archetype? Archetypes are believed to be universal, mythic characters that live within the collective unconscious of people all over the world. By symbolizing our core human desires, archetypes can evoke strong, deep emotions.

There are dozens of different archetypes. I focus on twelve when branding (or rebranding) a business like yours. What's important to know is that each archetype: Innocent, Explorer, Wise One, Hero, Rebel, Alchemist, Jester, Just Me, Romantic, Nurturer, Artist and Ruler has its own meaning, values, personality, likes and dislikes, strengths, sense of mission, and calling.

What does this means for you? By using the ancient power of an archetype when branding your business, you immediately make your marketing easier and incredibly exciting because you'll (finally!) clearly communicate who you are and what you're all about to your audience.

A branding strategy using archetypes allows your audience to dive deep into the heart and soul of who you really are. We see this concept come shining through when highly successful people have turned "who they are" into "a brand we love."

Here are three examples to show you exactly what I mean:

Example 1: Alexandria Brown, the "Ezine Queen"
Can you guess which archetype Ali is? Why, the Ruler of course! And she does it up beautifully! The Ruler archetype is about creating order and hierarchy ("I'm up here on my throne."). If you read any of Ali's sales emails or website, you'll see how she consistently talks about the "keys to the kingdom." Plus she often quotes herself as "the Queen says..." Ali also uses her lifestyle as a marketing tool, talking about her beach house as her castle.

Example 2: Oprah Winfrey. What is Oprah all about? Transformation! Through her makeovers and charitable works, Oprah is focused on taking the raw material of life and turning it into something spectacular. Her archetype is the Alchemist. You'll even find profiles she calls "stories of change" on her Angel Network website. Again, reminding us that change is magical.
Oprah's message is clear and consistent: with enough gumption (and a little wave of a magic wand) ANYONE can live their best life.

Example 3: ME! Kendall SummerHawk. One of my Weekly Marketing Wisdom readers wrote in to me, "Kendall, I always count on you to blaze ahead on the marketing frontier!" Those words were honey to the ears of this Explorer archetype. Like the Alchemist, the Explorer archetype creates change. But it isn't by waving a magic wand; it's by finding (and following) our own unique path and discovering our true sense of our self.

Which is why in my Brand Authenticity program, we focus on how your brand is your Soul's Divine Mission, expressed through your business. This message of individuality and expression is so powerful that this program has nearly sold out in just two weeks. Now that is the power of a branding strategy using archetypes!

Whether branding or rebranding, it's personality that separates the ordinary from the extraordinary. Archetypes give you a highly creative yet clear-cut way to develop a brand rich with emotion and personality. It's a branding strategy that promises to create an authentic brand for YOU.
About the Author
Business coach Kendall SummerHawk, the "Horse Whisperer for Business" delivers savvy ways for entrepreneurs to turn hectic businesses into money-making dreams. To learn more about her book, Brilliance Unbridled and sign up for her 7-part mini workshop go to http://www.kendallsummerhawk.com.
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