Hi there! For whoever may be reading this, let me introduce myself. I’m Myla, the new account service intern. Some quick facts about me are that I am from Santa Fe, New Mexico (and for those of you who are wondering, no, I unfortunately do not speak Spanish), I am a rising senior at SMU, majoring in strategic brand management and minoring in graphic design, and I have a passion for trashy television, specifically, anything and everything on Bravo. And yes, those of you who hate trashy television like my father, you are allowed to roll your eyes at me.
As for my experience at greenlight so far, it has been nothing short of welcoming and amazing. Even though I have only been at the agency for one week now, I can confidently say that I have never felt more welcomed by a group of people. So far, one of my favorite parts of the week has been a meeting that I had with Todd, the chief creative officer at greenlight on the topic of archetypes and how the agency uses them to understand and help a client’s brand.
Prior to the meeting, I did not know exactly what an archetype was and what they were used for. The official definition is, “a very typical example of a certain person or thing”. At greenlight, archetypes are used to find out a brand’s personality. There are twelve archetypes, which include: The Innocent, The Sage, The Explorer, The Rebel, The Magician, The Hero, The Lover, The Jester, The Everyman, The Caregiver, The Ruler, and The Creator. The archetypes are broken into four different categories that classify them by what they provide people or want to invoke. The Creator, The Ruler and the Caregiver are in the group of providing stability and control. The Innocent, The Sage, and The Explorer are in the group of independence and fulfillment. The Rebel, The Magician, and The Hero are in the group of Risk and Mastery. Lastly, The Lover, The Jester, and The Everyman are in the group of providing belonging and enjoyment.
One vital piece of information that Todd shared with Erin (the creative intern) and me was that while some brands might be a combination of two archetypes, the strongest brands usually stick to one archetype. An archetype can help a brand realize what their voice, tone and personality should be like. For example, Apple is The Creator archetype. The Creator archetype is known to be innovative, imaginative and to produce things that have value. The voice of Apple is one that is inspiring and sparks change. A classic example of this is their tagline, Think Different or their famous 1984 super bowl ad that notably never shows the computer, but instead uses a dramatic scene to provoke a feeling of excitement. In addition, Apple as a brand wants to provide a sense of stability and control. For other brands, such as, Ford, they want to appeal to everyone, hence why they are considered The Everyman archetype.
I think that the use of Archetypes is both smart and interesting, and definitely sets greenlight apart from other agencies when it comes to strategy, design, marketing, and branding. It makes sense to analyze and strategically think about a brand from a point of view that one would use to understand a friend or a human.
Ultimately, brands have human characteristics that they use to connect with consumers. Many people, including myself see their favorite brands as friends. Some of my favorites include Boys and Arrows, Goop, Glossier, Apple, and Free People. We believe in them and trust them like we would with a friend so it only makes sense for a brand to have a consistent personality and voice. It would seem strange if a brand were to one day use a sense of humor to convey a message and another day use a serious tone to express themselves.
Similar to how it would be difficult to build a relationship with someone who seems to have multiple personalities, a brand cannot expect to build trust with a consumer if they are using different personas. Now, thanks to Todd, I can’t help but think about what archetypes fit with brands that I am exposed to daily. In a way, I feel like I am becoming a psychologist on brands. I find myself not only psychoanalyzing The Housewives of New York City, but also the advertisements that stream during commercial breaks. Till next time!
-Myla (Account Service Intern)