Does your brand have personality?

If you have ever created a brand or owned a business, you have probably reviewed several rounds of logo designs, carefully selected a colour palette and decided on a corporate typeface. You might have missed an important step.


As people, we don’t naturally relate to businesses very well. We relate to people and their personalities. So, first of all, try to think of your business as a person rather than an abstract, inanimate idea. Your brand personality is the tone of voice your business takes when it talks, the style it dresses in and the first impression you get when you meet it. If this reflects the personality of your customer base, it’s much more likely to result in a positive emotional response.

Not convinced? Well, marketing scholar Tobias Langner led a research trio from Bergische University Wuppertal in Germany, investigating whether or not we relate to brands in the same way we do people. The result: “consumers experience emotions in a brand love relation that are even more positive than those evoked in close, interpersonal liking relationships”.

Yorkshire tea emulates the friendly, familiar personality of a Yorkshireman, using idiomatic language like “done proper” and hiring Yorkshire voice artists for TV adverts.

If Rolex were a person, they would exude class and sophistication. Using a crown as their pictoral mark and highly detailed, starkly lit product photography creates this look and feel.

Vans represents the misfits and rebels amongst us, and the brand adopts a creative tone, using the tagline “Off the Wall” in it’s marketing.


Firstly, you need to consider your customer base, what their personality is and what they are likely to relate to. This is important, as you want to make sure your brand has the right personality, not just a personality. Every branding decision after this point should become easier to make and justify. If you’re struggling, framing questions like these can be really helpful:

  • If my brand was a person, what would be their favourite colour?
  • If my brand was a person, how would they say hello?
  • If my brand was a person, would they prefer a traditional or modern look?

Hopefully, you get the picture by now, and your brand’s personality is already well on its way out of its shell!

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