Jung saw archetypes as part of the collective unconscious, the inherited part of the human psyche that holds the knowledge and experiences we share as a species.
They are primary forms – original patterns or ideal prototypes in the human mind that cover a range of concepts, including people, situations, characters, behaviours, objects and emotions. They can include, for example: male and female, mother and sister, father and brother, lover, hero, lion, snake, jealousy, betrayal, loyalty.
We find them in myths, fairytales, folklore, dreams, movies, television sitcoms, books, art. We feel familiar with characters and storylines and we can intuitively anticipate what’s going to happen next because we all have a deep knowing about them – they reside in us all.
Archetypes give us ways of understanding and behaving. They give meaning to our world and reflect our character, needs, drives, fears and desires. They are shaped by the world we live in and are subconsciously interpreted through the filter of our own personal experience.
We gravitate mostly to the archetypes that motivate us and tap into our own personal story and life calling.
And so archetypes are powerful forms of attraction to all people because they are authentic mirrors of human life. We see ourselves in them, who we are and who we want to be. Archetypes sit at the core of our emotional needs and desires – they are our motivating source.
Brands represent a means of self-definition and expression in today’s world. Brands that have identified the core archetypal symbolism and emotional needs of their own identity and product are the ones that stand out above and beyond the competition. They tell an archetypal story, not just a rational one.
“That people should succumb to these eternal images is entirely normal, in fact it is what these images are for. They are meant to attract, to convince, to fascinate, and to overpower”