As talked about in my first blog post, having a distinct identity is essential to online success. It raises your visibility and allows you to connect with your customers on a more personal emotional level. So discovering what your brand archetypes are, is central to positioning your company and products in a unique way. There are 12 of them, and we have already discussed The Innocent and The Regular Guy/Gal, so in those post, we will discuss two more; The Hero and The Outlaw.

Brand Archetype: The Hero

The Hero

The Hero’s ultimate goal is to help improve the world. They are courageous, bold, honorable, confident, strong and inspirational. Their greatest fears are failure and to appear weak or fragile. Hero’s are always striving to be better, so they can better help others.

Advertisers have used The Hero as part of brand messaging and advertisements for a very long time, using the ruggedly handsome hero to speak to the human need for protection and to feel safe.

Hero customers want brands that have quality and efficiency that they think will put them in front of everyone else and they won’t be influenced by cute messages and funny imagery.

Hero businesses promote themselves as being far more superior than anyone else. They feel as though if anyone gets a higher rating or has better value, that is the worst thing that can possibly happen to them.

Companies that Use This Brand Archetype

Thinking of the ruggedly handsome guy, brings up a lot of past advertisement imagery, like the Marlboro Man or the very old ads for Old Spice. Today, brands like Nike and BMW are good examples.

Nike likes to feature top athletes that have undeniable skills in what they do. They are the best of the best and seem almost super human with their abilities. This appeals to the Hero archetype, because if that person can do it, so can they, and having the same Nike shoes will get them there. But you have to go out and work hard and “Just Do It”.

BMW is one of the best selling luxury automakers of the world and has had the slogan “The Ultimate Driving Machine”. Everyone knows if you are driving a brand new BMW, you are somebody, and that appeals to The Hero archetype for their need to always appear in front of everyone else. This doesn’t make The Hero archetype vain, they just value things that are “better”. BMW ads are no-nonsense and show you their beautiful lines of vehicles.

If your brand would appeal to The Hero archetype for being dependable, strong and high quality, then keep these companies in mind when creating your marketing materials.

Brand Archetype: The Outlaw

The Outlaw

The archnemesis to The Hero, and is pretty much everything opposite of what The Hero believes in. Also known as The Rebel, this archetype wants revolution, to break the rules and to fight authority. They never want to appear powerless. They are rebellious, wild and like to pave the way for change.

Outlaw or Rebel customers appreciate products that are unconventional and go against the grain.  They like content that shocks with no blatant selling messages.

Rebel companies put themselves out there as an alternative to the mainstream and make an effort to stand out from the crowd. Rebel brands have almost a cult-like following where their fans are extremely loyal. The worst thing that can happen to a Rebel brand is to be kitschy or become too popular.

Brands that Use this Archetype

The main brand that comes to mind that falls under The Outlaw archetype is… you probably guessed it.. Harley Davidson. But another is Red Bull.

Harley Davidson’s brand is all about personal freedom, and as an iconic brand, they have set themselves apart from the competition. Their ads have always remained the epitome of appealing to the Rebel crowd with messages like; “United by Independents”, and “Try living OFF the straight and narrow”, that call to the break the rules and fighting authority traits of these types of consumers.

Red Bull might seem unlikely, but if you delve deeper into what they are all about, you will see that they have a very different kind of marketing style. Instead of sticking to the traditions, they have created a brand myth through extreme sports, events & stunts to get attention. They sponsor video games, they work with rap artists, they build fun events around their brand and that greatly appeals to the outlaw crowd, because it goes against the norm.

So if your brand is revolutionary, an alternative to the mainstream and would appeal to the Outlaw/Rebel archetype, keep these brands in mind when creating your marketing materials.

Up next.. two more archetypes.. The Explorer and The Creator.. CLICK HERE!

By Tisha Hedges

Director of Operations for Worldwide Brands, Inc

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