Brand archetype trends of 2022

There is a common belief that personality is fixed, that it is intrinsic to who we are. However, our identity is fluid depending on where we are and the people we are with, including the way we speak and the language we use. It’s the same with brand personality – it evolves with its environment; adapting to cultural, technological, and societal shifts.

There are many frameworks for interrogating brand personality, to analyse those most human characteristics that we can attribute to a brand. Carl Jung developed a set of archetypes in the 1920s which he believed were universal in defining personality. We decided to look at these 12 archetypes and discover the brand personality trends from 2022 for the brands we have worked with in the Rowland creative studio.

The 12 Jungian Archetypes

This year, we have worked for some really inspiring organisations, companies that are working hard to solve some of the world’s biggest issues.

Queensland company, Entyr is solving a global problem, diverting waste tyres from landfill to produce high quality road base amongst other things; Vinnies continues to support those in need and to shape a more just and compassionate community, while Multicultural Australia is launching a workplace diversity and inclusion accreditation program.

But we’re also seeing this behaviour from brands not normally seen as the quintessential Caregiver archetype. With a responsible investment approach embedded across all investment asset classes, QIC travelled to Egypt this year for COP27 and provided a daily podcast on key issues to help educate us all.

Many of our clients are committing to comprehensive sustainability strategies, supporting their employees, their communities and their environment. Some clients, such as Stahmann Webster, have even gone further and developed ESG sub-brands to highlight this important dimension of their brand purpose.

Everywhere you look, Australian companies are showing they care.

2022 highlighted to us that branding isn’t static. As brand experts, we assign a set of personality traits to new or refreshed brands. However, a brand adapts to its changing environment, moderating the way it shows up, just like us. The Ruler – bold, insightful and brave – can also be The Everyman or The Caregiver, depending on the circumstance.

What we saw this year is that people, more than ever, have higher expectations of the brands they interact with — we expect a genuine commitment to societal responsibility: to the environment, to community, and to staff. Brands need to be well-rounded, and able to demonstrate that they understand and care about impact, beyond just the financial.

Considering that concept of a rigid set of archetypes emerged around 100 years ago, it’s probably time to evolve this theory. Like people, brands have more than one dimension and need to incorporate other personality behaviours to succeed in today’s world.

For Rowland 2022 was the year of The Caregiver. What trends will 2023 reveal?