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Brand persona – Humanize your company

by Casey Schmidt  |  January 7, 2020

3 min. read
A block of letters that read, 'Personality'.

When your company interacts with customers, they reveal something about themselves as a business. This information all adds up and builds a brand persona. A brand persona influences the way customers behave toward companies, including when it comes time to make purchases or visit your website over others.

Do you know what type of brand persona your company is? Do you know why it’s important or how to create it?

What is a brand persona?

A brand persona is made up of different characteristics, values, and personality features. These traits all help companies open up to different customers in numerous ways. When a customer assigns human traits to a company, this is the sign of brand persona in action. A brand persona can be abstract, in the sense that customers create a human image of your brand in their heads when seeing your logo. It can also be more concrete, such as a logo or mascot.

A hand holding a 'Customer' sign.
Aim your persona at specific customers.

What makes a good or effective brand persona?

A strong brand persona usually is relatable to a customer base and makes them feel as if your brand is just like them personality-wise. If you’re active, hard-working, outgoing, sympathetic, environmentally-aware or friendly, you want a company to mirror these traits.

With this in mind, aim your messaging and goals toward the people who would likely be willing to try your products. For example, if you are selling food products that are designed to be eaten on-the-go, you might try to construct something that embodies hard-working busy people that prioritize working and getting things done over sitting down and relaxing during a big meal. When customers think of your company like a mirror image of their character, they buy into the idea that the product you create is the right one for them.

A stamp that reads, 'Do you know your customers?'.
Make sure to understand who you’re targeting.

Why do I need one?

Your brand persona gives your company a chance to have powerful relationships with customers. What will customers visualize when they see your logo and products or hear your jingle? Will yours be one that portrays the positive values, mission and goals of your company? Remember that if you fail to strive for the right identity, it’s inevitable that the wrong one will be bestowed upon you. Make sure you guide yours from day one.

To see how powerful it is for a company, imagine a young girl and her mother are shopping for volleyball equipment. They see two different brands are selling gear. One company represents a tough, hard-nosed athletic girl who fights to win every game. The other brand’s persona is absent and gives no insight into their brand identity. It seems obvious from this example that the right persona makes companies successful, especially over their competitors.

A group of people playing beach volleyball.
Try to embody what your customer feels inside.

Creating distinct awareness and concrete understanding

It’s not always easy to know what your brand persona is. Fortunately, there are a few ways to work with your teams in order to better understand it. The easiest way to help everyone in your company visualize your persona is by having them imagine seeing a personified version of your brand. What would your brand look like if you closed your eyes and made them human? Would they be short, tall, rude, friendly, exciting, boring? Take these cues as hints to what you’re doing right or wrong and go from there.

Once your brand becomes more concrete, spread the ideal version of it across your company to ensure everyone continues to work towards spreading it at all times. The only way to maintain one is by having all team members aware of it.

Remember that your brand persona not only signifies important values of your company, it also helps customers choose you over your competitors. Keep this in mind as you build your future campaigns.