Take a minute to answer this: What is your brand personality? Write down at least three solid traits (one word each) of your business.
Now ask this question to your team. Are the personality traits the same? If your team isn’t on the same page about your brand personality, your audience is going to have a difficult time understanding your brand, too.
Brand personality defined
Brand personality is more than how you use your logo, fonts, and colors — though that consistency is important — it’s the messaging, the voice, the persona your brand presents to your audience. Your customers may be drawn to your beautiful logo and color palette, but the ultimate bond is created when they experience a personal connection with your brand.
Think about it. If your brand were your real-life friend, you would want to know them. He or she may wear a cool T-shirt and sport the same brand shoes on a regular basis, but what really matters is at the core of that friend. Your entire team’s understanding of your brand is critical to the makeup of your brand personality.
Whether you’re taking control of it or not, your brand personality is evolving. What’s driving its direction?
Craft your brand personality
Here are 3 quick tips for defining (or redefining) your brand character traits:
1. Brainstorm with your team.
Individually, collect some words you feel describe your brand (or the direction you want your brand to go). Let this be a free form exercise. At the end of the designated time, come together to compare your individual lists.
2. Narrow your list.
As you compare your lists as a team, keep track of which words echoed, and combine synonyms. This list may still be long, depending on how unified your keywords were.
3. Build a profile.
Using your team list, talk about your brand as a person. If you were to embody your brand, what would it look like? Clarify age, interests, values, goals, beliefs. Is it a man or woman? Gentle or dominant? Energetic or laid-back? Witty or serious? Figure out who your brand is, and make sure your team is in complete agreement.
We, at TCD, can also lend our expertise and take you through this evaluation process.
Once your brand personality is clear, you can take back the wheel and make sure all that’s communicated about your brand lines up with the profile you’ve created.
Clarifying confusion: a mini case study
Public charter school Académie Lafayette (AL) had a perception problem: people did not understand the public charter concept or the school’s need for funding. Even though the school had been operating since 1999, it needed to better communicate its offerings and — you guessed it — brand personality.
When we developed the school’s logo, we collaborated with the AL team to define the school’s brand personality. The logo was just the start of a larger initiative to position AL. Following the logo creation, we designed a brochure that explained AL’s educational structure and inherent financial challenges.
Storytelling, testimonials, facts and figures, and overall messaging pointed to the school’s brand personality traits:
The Académie Lafayette brochure became a valuable resource for staff members to share the same message about the school, and it alleviated confusion among community members and parents.
Since the brochure’s creation, Académie Lafayette has added 250+ students. We’ve continued to support AL in its communication efforts through other printed materials and a responsive website, all which promote the solidified brand personality.