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When you think of Nike, you would visualize someone athletic and sporty. When you think of Rolls Royce, you would visualize someone regal and crèam de la crème. Johnson & Johnson comes across as kind, compassionate, and caring – a brand people trust, a brand people would like to associate themselves with. Harley Davidson comes across as strong, tough, and dynamic – a brand people find awe-inspiring, a brand people would like to hold onto.

What kind of a person comes to your mind when you think of your brand? And frankly, does this even matter?

Brand’s Personality is the set of key characteristics or traits that your Brand would display if it were a human. As such, it defines how your brand speaks and behaves – either through individuals representing your brand, or through your advertisements, or your packaging. And this is of critical importance- according to a study, 45% of a brand’s image in the minds of its consumer is attributed to what it says and how it says it.

A brand personality that resonates is sure to enhance brand equity for it offers a consistent set of traits that consumers can align with their own value systems. Brand personality can help in:

  • Portraying your image as a brand
  • Communicating positive traits about your brand
  • Forming an emotional connection with consumers
  • Differentiating your brand from competition
  • Building long-standing relationships with consumers

Brands with a strong and truthful personality are easier to remember and identify. A strong personality that matches the brand experience and the shared values engender loyalty towards the brand and increased trust.

Types of Brand Personality

Given the importance of your Brand’s Personality, we need to have a tool for measurement of it. One of the most often used instrument in this regard was developed by Jennifer Aaker way back in 1997 in her research on “Dimensions of Brand Personality”. She constructed a five-dimensional framework for describing and measuring the “personality” of a given brand, each dimension being divided into a set of facets.

  1. Excitement – carefree, spirited, youthful (think of Fanta)
  2. Sincerity – down-to earth, hardworking, thoughtful (think of Amul)
  3. Ruggedness – outdoor, tough, athletic (think of Thums Up)
  4. Competence – successful, influential, accomplished (think of GE)
  5. Sophistication – luxury, elegant, prestigious (think of Rolex)

Craft your Own

Carefully and accurately defining your personality is important for your brand to resonate with the right consumers. By reflecting the correct attitude and choosing an apt personality you can occupy a place that is unique in the market. Is your brand bold or is it witty? Is it conservative or is it intellectual? Is it glamorous or is it mysterious? Is it dependable or is it youthful? Here are some tips:

  • If your brand comes across as friendly, showcase the friendly relationships your share with your employees, suppliers, and consumers.
  • If your brand comes across as sincere, offer a sneak-peak into your production process and show them how hardworking you are in creating an honest product.
  • If your brand comes across as rugged, highlight your employees’ adventures and portray your daring self.
  • If your brand comes across as reliable, share facts about the equipment you use or the standards you adhere to.
  • If your brand comes across as sophisticated, pair your product with places and people that consumers see as aspirational.

It all depends on your inherent personality. Focus on the traits and qualities that make you “you”. Then, find a creative way of engaging with your consumers, make a strong and personal connection and achieve brand equity.


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