Branding should reflect the personality of a brand. But how do you give a brand a personality if it not a person?

Brand personality is simply a set of human characteristics that you can use to describe your brand. This is how your brand presents itself to the world and your branding should visually represent this. This is important because it helps people that interact with your brand to understand “who” you are as a brand.

Stay true to that personality and avoid sometimes trying to be what you are not. You cannot be all things to all people. Instead, just be consistent and don’t confuse those that are getting to know your brand. Remember also that your brand’s personality is not your personality. Instead your brand personality serves to position your brand to appeal to your intended audience. Just like we are naturally drawn to certain people, we connect better with brands that exhibit those same traits.

According to Harvard School Professor, Gerald Zaltman, 95% of our purchasing decisions are made in the subconscious mind. So, creating your own brand personality will help people to connect with your brand on an emotional level – even if they don’t realise it! Identifying a clear personality type will help keep you authentic and consistent across all your brand’s touch points. Your brand’s visual identity, brand story and messaging are based on this personality, so everything your brands puts out to the world should clearly align with it. This then shapes how your audience perceive you and internally, can keep future marketing efforts on brand.

Why is having a brand personality important?

In a nutshell, having a clear brand personality will help in two major ways:

  1. Positioning – It is your opportunity to stand out by defining and being your unique self
  2. Connecting – People will naturally connect emotionally with a specific personality they are attracted to

A fun exercise and powerful method of finding and defining your brand’s personality is to align it to one of the 12 Personality Archetypes defined by Carl Jung. Each has a very strong set of characteristics that people can easily relate to and recognise. Using these archetypes to define your brand is powerful because it leverages the science behind human emotional connections to your advantage.

Who is Carl Jung?


Carl Jung (1875 – 1961) was a renowned Swiss psychiatrist and psycho analyst who studied the psychology of the unconscious. From his study, he developed his own theory on human personality.

Part of this theory is that we all have a “collective” unconsciousness inherited from the past collective experience of humanity. This is expressed through universal archetypes, or patterns of thinking and behaving, that we inherit from our ancestors. Consequently, our instincts influence our personality.

Jung’s theory of personality gave rise to 12 archetype figures, each with a powerful identity that consistently displays a set of human character traits driven by a particular basic human desire. He believed we are all influenced by one more dominantly than the rest. For instance, someone driven by freedom would display the characteristics of “the Explorer” however someone driven by service would be “The Caregiver’.


Mela Creative Brand Architypes detailed

The 12 Brand Personalities

We call the Jungian personality archetypes the 12 brand personalities. Brand personalities can be industry related but not necessarily. Sometimes there is an expectation for say a school to be The Sage whilst a medical brand will be The Caregiver. This results in your brand blending in with your competitors. However, whilst a brand will gravitate to one core brand personality it may have also traits from other brand personalities. This can serve to differentiate you in the market but should only represent up to 30% of the overall personality of a brand so your brand does not appear scattered.

Take our quick 3-step quiz to find your brand’s personality

Look at our chart below and see which brand personality best describes your brand.

  1. Driver – this is the underlying human desire that drives your brand’s values. For example, Caregiver is driven by service etc. Choose a driver first to help you navigate through to the brand personality type you feel a connection to.
  2. Character traits – if your brand exhibits at least three character traits from one of the 12 brand personalities, then this is probably your primary brand personality. You may also display more than one trait from different brand personalities and that’s okay, this may form your secondary personality. But remember to not spread yourself too thin but try to align with a maximum total of two to three.
  3. Aspiration brands – check if your brand has traits in common with any of the well-known brands in your brand personality type. For example, are you more like BMW (fast, performance driven) or Mercedes (luxury, makes a statement).



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What is your brand’s personality saying?

Once you have defined your brand personality’s traits, make sure your messaging aligns with your brand personality.

“Love your neighbour” sounds like you are The Caregiver

“Life is simple and elegant” sounds like you are The Innocent

“Demand more and go get it, don’t toe the line” sounds like you are The Outlaw

“I only have eyes for you” sounds like you are The Lover

“Reward your life’s success” sounds like you are The Ruler

“The truth will set you free” sounds like you are The Sage

“Tomorrow is brighter than today, believe in your dreams” sounds like you are The Magician

“Live life, brings joy” sounds like you are The Jester

“If it can be imagined, it can be created” sounds like you are The Creator

“Don’t fence me in” sounds like you are The Explorer

“We can make the world better, where there’s a will there’s a way” sounds like you are The Hero

“Live together in harmony, play it cool” sounds like you are The Everyman


Does your brand’s personality match what you thought?

We’d love to help you bring your brand (and it’s personality) to life!  Contact us now.