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Brand personality is defined as the human personality traits associated with a specific company or product, which aids in turning a simple product into a lifestyle choice. These traits provide the connection between a customer and a company that encourages the customer to return to a specific company to meet his or her needs or wants. This is typically developed through marketing, both in the types and content of advertisements and where a product is marketed.
Marketers for companies and specific products often attempt to associate the organization, service, or product with human traits to make the item relatable. The most common characteristics attributed to a brand include trustworthiness, fun, and exciting, as well as intelligent, sophisticated, and youthful. Outside of specific traits, brand personality often aims to create a lifestyle for customers by subconsciously convincing them that, by purchasing a specific brand, they themselves are associated with those same personality traits. Once the company begins to excel at its specific product, that same product can be branched out into other areas to create a type of culture for customers. Outdoor sporting companies selling everyday clothing and household items are a prime example of how brand personality can expand into a lifestyle choice.
Specific traits connect with a customer on an emotional basis rather than a practical one. Introducing a personality that pulls customers in enables a product or company to encourage customers to choose its specific product over other, similar products that can meet the customer’s same basic needs. This not only helps to draw in new customers, but also to increase the rate of repeat customers. For this reason, brand personality is also a prime means of developing brand loyalty, which is essential when creating a successful, established business.
The development of brand personality is often tricky, as customers typically do not respond to being told what to think. Advertisers spend enormous amounts of time researching what images, words, and even colors can evoke an emotional response in a customer. A company that wishes to be seen as trustworthy and competent typically uses commercials, print ads, and internet advertisements that convey an intelligent yet approachable appearance. Similarly, companies aiming to seem adventurous, young, and cool often utilize bright colors, fast imagery, and short catch phrases to develop this type of personality.
Creating a brand personality also hinges on deciding what type of customer will utilize a product, and then determining to what that customer base will relate in a company. This information is typically obtained through market research and customer surveys. Companies that sell products or services geared towards a certain generation or group in society, such as single 20 to 30 years old or parents, will typically work towards developing a brand personality that suits that generation’s desires and culture.