Often, we appreciate businesses dealing with serious matters who retain their sense of humor. In spite of their product or service, these brands remain lighthearted and optimistic.
While this may seem like a fortunate turn of events, it is far from it. It is the result of a careful and articulate brand strategy that employs the idea of brand archetypes in order to relate with their customers.
In this article, we will explore a particularly enticing brand archetype – the Jester – and the practices you can employ to make your customers feel entertained at the very mention of your name.
How Brand Archetypes Contribute to Brand Development
Your brand is the only true differentiator between your company and your competitors.
However, a brand is far more than a set of visual guidelines and typefaces. Instead, it is a combination of emotions and purpose that your customers remember whenever a particular need arises.
Therefore, it is important to craft a memorable brand.
The best way to create a unique brand identity is oft through brand archetypes, as described by Carl Jung:
- The Sage
- The Lover
- The Hero
- The Everyman
- The Creator
- The Ruler
- The Caregiver
- The Outlaw
- The Explorer
- The Magician
- The Jester
- The Innocent
Each archetype represents a set of motivations that influence human behavior and ultimately turn people into who they are. However, the archetypes observe this at a macro scale. Thus, an entire ideal audience composed of millions can be viewed accurately through the lens of an archetype.
And once you have understood which archetype your audience embodies, you can embody it as well; creating a far deeper connection with your customers than your competitors ever could.
Your Brand Archetype Describes Your Why
Brand archetypes can also be utilized to describe a certain brand’s “why;” the reason behind its actions and existence. Its purpose.
By crafting your company’s brand in a way that resonates with your customers, you will have successfully made your company’s values align with that of your customers. For 85% of them, value alignment takes precedence over both quality and price.
When customers have understood your why and realized that it is the same reason behind their actions as well, they will be more incentivized to buy your products as well as become repeat buyers, continuously increasing your revenue.
However, putting your why into words in not simple; you must tell it with a story.
Therein lies the true value of brand archetypes. As humans, we are naturally fond of storytelling. Our subconscious retains more information from which stem emotions, evoked every time a customer remembers your brand story.
Therefore, your brand archetype – your story – becomes the key asset for increasing your market share.
The Jester Brand Archetype
However, companies that aim to provide entertainment and motivate customers to invest in their inner child will commonly incorporate the Jester archetype into their brand identity.
Consider M&M’s. They have been using humor to promote their candy for decades. And it still works to this day. When people think of M&M’s, they think of fun. The product contributes to marketing, and vice versa.
Jesters don’t shy away from the spotlight. They crave attention. However, not all of their customers do. Some Jester brands are prized by shy, introverted customers who live vicariously through their beloved Jester brand.
While Jester brands are humorous, they do not necessarily use the slapstick comedy type of humor. Instead, they are clever, witty, jovial, and charming in how easily they find optimism and lightheartedness in every situation.
Consider Snickers. Their “You’re not you when you’re hungry” commercials have been a fan favorite for years. Their array of celebrities transforming into hangry characters and back, enchanting the audience and making them grab for Snickers.
While the Jester archetype is a natural fit for some industries such as the food industry, there have also been examples of different companies using them to their success:
- NordNet, a Scandinavian bank, which presented the experience of buying a home through humorous advertisements
- Old Spice with their commercials in which an array of men find themselves in the most ludicrous situations
- MailChimp, whose mascot approaches users with funny questions such as: “Who would win in a death match between Bruce Lee and Iron Man?”
These brands are not childish; they simply choose to catch the attention of their users with a little humor. And it is greatly appreciated.
How to Embody the Jester Brand Archetype
Regardless of your product, if your audience would be receptive to humor, you can include it in your brand strategy by:
- Utilizing vivid colors in visuals and high-energy situations in advertising
- Explaining serious concepts in an out-of-the-box, jovial manner
- Use your messaging to challenge industry conventions and point out the ridiculousness
- Use quirkiness and zaniness to create a humorous brand personality
After all, if you can make your customers laugh, you can make them do business with your company.