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Archetypes in Branding Card Decks

“The real act of discovery

consists not in finding new lands

but of seeing with new eyes.” 
- Marcel Proust

Archetypes in Branding: A Toolkit for Creatives and Strategists

offers a highly participatory approach to brand development. With a foreword by Jay Ogilvy, co-founder of Global Business Network and a companion deck of sixty original archetype cards, the book includes useful advice on the meaning and responsible use of archetypes, as well as how to apply archetypes in a variety of business contexts. 


Designed to help the effective integration of brand culture and communications, an archetypal approach creates a unique way to have the conversations that matter to the future success and sustainability of your brand and your business.


Readers will use this tool over and over again to inform and enliven brand strategy, and to create resonant and authentic communications.


“If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up

people together to collect wood and assign them tasks,

but rather teach them to long for the endless

immensity of the sea.” 
- Antoine De Saint-Exupery


Today’s brands are increasingly defined by their interactions and relationships. Customers are demanding greater accountability and integrity from businesses. Workers are craving a deeper sense of meaning from their careers. And companies are continually seeking ways to achieve more powerful and resonant brand engagements.


Applying the phenomena of archetypal wisdom facilitates a more authentic, holistic and human way of being in business.

When differentiation, loyalty, and bottom-line sustainability matter, archetypes matter. 

Brand Alignment

Match your market and your culture with your brand

If a brand is about what you stand for, then embodying your organization's archetype guides brand development and connects people to your organization, in subtle yet powerful ways. Archetypes help us understand what motivates people. When revealed, and made intentional, these universal patterns of behavior guide individuals and companies to stay true to their mission and brand promise. An archetypal approach coalesces your business strategy to resolve friction points and obstacles to innovation. Functioning as a kind of compass, brand and culture inconsistencies simply dissolve in the light of shared values, needs and purpose. 

Brand Experience

Close the customer experience gap and build trust

Archetypes are an inherently user-centred approach that provide visibility and insight into how a brand is actually felt. As a tool they offer principles, rather than rules, to guide the experience of the brand  at every stage of the customer journey. Because they are grounded in a consistent and enduring expression of meaning, they increase trust with stakeholders while instilling belonging, stability, mastery and self-actualization. 


As greater numbers of customer touchpoints are assumed by technology solutions, grounding your brand with 

archetypes simplifies decision making for business to retain its humanity and cohesion.

Brand Attraction

Create magnetic demand and grow long-term relationships

Archetypes are powerful attractors of consciousness.  Through universal symbols and stories, they create instant emotional resonance and affinity, an archetypal  framework uncovers your authentic brand character. When archetypes are embodied people recognize themselves in some aspect of your brand. They become connectors for the brand. Using archetypes can shift your brand from push to pull, from messaging to values, from control to expansion, and move your engagements from transactions toward relationships. Archetypes help bring your story to life in a way that creates magnetic attraction — the illusive piece that builds lasting value.


“I am always doing things I can’t do,

that’s how I get to do them.” 
- Pablo Picasso


Offering refinement, nuance, and differentiation

Some version of twelve fundamental archetypes have been in use since Mark and Pearson’s seminal work, The Hero and The Outlaw. Archetypes in Branding expands the fundamental twelve into five archetypes to a family. While this may be overwhelming at first, users can achieve greater nuance in their brand stories and greater resonance with stakeholders. 

Another shift from Mark & Pearson’s work is that Archetypes in Branding reframes The Regular Guy/Gal as The Citizen, an increasingly important brand embodiment in our world today, which of course starts another line of inquiry and discussion. Whether it is accomplished using 12 or 60 is less important than the shared ownership that comes with the exploration and commitment possible using an archetypal lens.



Jung himself recognized that there are an unlimited number of archetypes. Undoubtedly you have perspectives to share so please share what archetypes you might be worth adding, refining, or combining.

Would like to collaborate on your suggested archetype?

“You’re only given a little spark of madness. You mustn’t lose it.” 
- Robin Williams

Hi, I'm Margaret. I'm a strategist, facilitator, designer, writer, coach, and culture junkie.
As a Silicon Valley native, I learned to think 
in systems, strategies, and surprises, to create in metaphor, experiences, and technology, and to relate with empathy
and curiosity.
I design services, enable innovation,
facilitate change, and co-create the narratives
that make the future real.
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“Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate.”
- Carl Gustave Jung


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