Brand Archetypes - How to differenciate in the jungle of young European Nutraceutical Brands

1. THE JUNGLE OF YOUNG EUROPEAN NUTRACEUTICAL BRANDS

The food supplements sector is thriving and evolving rapidly; without surprise, it is diversifying under the impetus of an ever-growing number of player and new brands. Along with this diversification, there is a need for brands to position themselves effectively in relation to their competitors. Brand identity and “personality” are becoming an increasingly important criteria of differentiation, and young laboratories are going all in to stand out in this area.

In this context, we took part in a little exercise: a very brief analysis of young European nutraceutical brands through the prism of “Brand Archetypes” in order to illustrate this diversity of styles.

2. WHAT IS THE BRAND ARCHETYPE MODEL ?

The concept of “Brand Archetype” is a model inspired by the personality archetypes of Carl Jung and is based on the assumption that a strong brand will always tend to correspond to one of the Jungian archetypes. This “brand personality” is then recognized by its customers, who recognize themselves in the archetype and thus identify with the brand based on common aspirations.

Like all “branding tools”, this approach is obviously reductive and caricatural, but it nevertheless has the merit of pushing brands to reflect on what resonates with the consumer. It allows brands to ask themselves who they are in the eyes of their customers and to refine their discourse to better convey this personality.

3. 12 YOUNG BRANDS TO ILLUSTRATE THE 12 ARCHETYPES

3.1. THE INNOCENT

The “Innocent” archetype is characterized by an optimistic and light tone of speech. The visual identity will often recall the innocence of childhood through fresh and bright colors. The “innocent” brand must be simple and convey an always positive energy. Brands like Dove or Innocent juices symbolize this archetype and the quest for carefreeness that characterizes it.

 

And  in Nutraceuticals ?

The French brand EPYCURE perfectly harnesses the codes of the “innocent” archetype in its branding, through a bright visual identity and a resolutely positive/optimistic discourse that exudes good humor. EPYCURE also uses a touch of humor in the names of some products (“Magic in the air” or “Poudre à canon”) for more lightness. Finally, the brand is also known for offering food supplements in the form of gummies, a playful galenic form that is reminiscent of childhood and opposes to the “heaviness” of a pharma-like experience.

3.2. THE SAGE

The “Sage” archetype is characterized by a desire to educate, inform and objectify their discourse so that the consumer can make an informed choice. This positioning is generally sober and often scientific in its approach. An erudite brand must be sharp but didactic. Brands like The Economist or BBC effectively represent this archetype which considers that a better-informed person is a better person.

 

And  in Nutraceuticals ?

UK-based brand HEIGHTS meets all the visual codes of a nutraceutical start-up but with a certain sobriety. To hell with extravagant health claims; the brand prefers to educate its consumer on the reasons for the choice of ingredients in a formula, on the importance of the bioavailability of active ingredients or on the clinical data available. Everything in the discourse appears rational and scientific, right down to the bottle, which is reminiscent of laboratory glassware.

3.3. THE EXPLORER

The “Explorer” archetype is characterized by a willingness to think outside the box and explore the world in search of its own ideal. Eager to discover, the brand traces its own path with audacity and determination. A brand with this identity will always appear indomitable and independent. Brands like Patagonia or Johnnie Walker are emblematic of this archetype, whose mission is to invite to travel and be a source of inspiration for its customers.

 

And  in Nutraceuticals ?

French brand NUTRI&CO positions itself as a pioneer in modern nutraceuticals and the spearhead of a preventive approach to health. The brand stands out for its ambition to explore health differently and dares to investigate new avenues (explanatory infographics, products centered on a key flagship ingredient, etc.). Whether in its sports partnerships (ultra-trail, mountain hiking) or in its visual universe (the horizon line, the Christopher Columbus style caravel or the space shuttles), the “adventure” dimension is omnipresent and leaves little doubt as to the brand’s archetype.

3.4. THE HERO

The Hero archetype is characterized by unwavering determination, outspoken and courageous speech, and an aspiration to triumph in the face of adversity. Hero brands are full of energy and always represent the impetus that will move its customer forward. Brands like Nike or Duracell effectively illustrate this combative approach.

 

And  in Nutraceuticals ?

The D-LAB laboratory has set itself the goal of rebalancing the body to optimize its functioning. It wishes to triumph over the disturbances of modern life and positions itself as a committed, demanding, and transparent brand. Its objectives are clear and the brand has given itself the means to achieve its ambitions, notably by integrating the production of supplements into its approach.

3.5. THE MAGICIAN

The “Magician” Archetype is characterized by the transformation of ordinary everyday life into an extraordinary experience. Often focused on innovation or new technologies, the magician brand aims to be visionary and charismatic. Its goal: to make the impossible possible. Brands like Tesla or Dyson illustrate this archetype, that strives to innovate to transform the consumer experience.

 

And  in Nutraceuticals ?

THE MAIN INGREDIENT COMPANY enters the nutraceutical sector with known and recognized ingredients such as turmeric, spirulina or saffron. However, the brand transforms these active ingredients into a completely different experience through a galenic innovation that offers increased bioavailability for a transformed efficiency. Some lexical elements are very specific to the archetype: “fascinating formula”, “magic pigment”, “unleash the potential” or “supernatural honey”, are a perfect example of typical “Magician” vocabulary.

3.6. THE OUTLAW

The “Outlaw” archetype is characterized by a willingness to challenge the status quo. So-called Rebel brands are convinced that something needs to change in our lives. They want to be leaders of change and initiate a revolution within their industry. Brands like Harley Davidson or Virgin perfectly represent this willingness to shake up the world and defy convention.

 

And  in Nutraceuticals ?

Young nutricosmetic brand SKIN and OUT does not have the rough look of Harley Davidson and yet, it perfectly illustrates the “Rebel” archetype which opposes a strong dogma of society, to offer a new look on their activity. In this case, it’s about our society’s view of pimples and the “fighting imperfections” approach. The brand breaks these codes to approach the pimple as a signal from the body and will therefore de-demonize it to switch a “fight” into a support process. The brand also ignores the demarcation between food supplements and cosmetics with an “in & out” approach.

3.7. THE EVERYMAN

The inclusive archetype, more commonly known as “everyman”, is characterized by a welcoming, warm and non-divisive speech. It does not seek to “stand out” but to resonate with everyone in order to support customers in their daily life and unify around a theme and a sense of belonging. Brands such as Ikea or Volkswagen are good examples of this archetype which aims to be efficient while remaining pragmatic and humble.

And  in Nutraceuticals ?

For HOLLIS laboratories, women live a thousand lives in a lifetime; the brand aims at supporting them so that they can live them fully and simply. The discourse, both very personal and without frills, corresponds to the inclusive archetype perfectly: all women can relate to it and find daily support in the brands human and comforting speech. The products are intended to be effective, adapted and without superfluity.

3.8. THE JESTER

The festive archetype, also called “Jester”, is characterized by a bubbly and fun style. Jester brands refuse to accept a dull routine and want to be a source of perpetual fun. They want to color everyday life and do not hesitate to do so with a large dose of humor and a touch of irreverence. Brands like Ben & Jerry’s or M&M’s perfectly illustrate this archetype that can talk about everything with lightness.

And  in Nutraceuticals ?

A totally uninhibited and casual discourse and a fun and colorful style: young brand OUITY demonstrates that it is not necessary to take oneself too seriously to communicate on a Health theme that is anything but trivial. The brand goes so far as to use memes and produce relevant content on TikTok – a perilous exercise in nutraceuticals as this social network is focused on fun. This offbeat approach is used very effectively by the brand since it allows it to free health issues like PMS from all the taboos associated with it.

3.9. THE LOVER

The intimate archetype, more widely known as the lover or friend, is characterized by a very strong relational desire and a strong emotional dimension. Its universe is often centered on sensoriality, sometimes even sensuality, although this is not necessarily the case. Brands such as Haagen dazs and Alfa Romeo illustrate this strong emotional approach that distinguishes the “lover” archetype.

 

And  in Nutraceuticals ?

Young nutraceutical brand MIYE (which also means “good friend” in Provençal) wants to be the confidante of its consumers. It aims at offering them a safe space without taboos to benefit from the brand’s knowledge on everything related to female hormonal balance – in a friendly and kind way. The photos of skin in the visual identity reinforce the feeling of touching the sensoriality and the link between two people (the skins are touching on the photos) represent the relational dimension.

3.10. THE CAREGIVER

The “Caregiver” archetype is characterized by a strong desire to protect and heal its consumers and more broadly the world around them. Compassion is therefore at the heart of the personality of caregiver brands, which are reassuring and attentive in all circumstances. Brands like Johnson’s Baby and Volvo are clear examples of this archetype that will always make safety a priority.

 

And  in Nutraceuticals ?

IN VIVO HEALTHCARE is a British laboratory that has made patient service its mission. Few young nutraceutical brands can pride themselves on focusing so much of their discourse around their devotion to the patient; In Vivo Healthcare even goes as far as to extend this devotion to the world through a strong environmental commitment by becoming a “carbon neutral” company and through global business ethics (B-Corp certification). The brand also provides a great deal of information and training to ensure that people are cared for in the best possible way.

3.11. THE RULER

The “ruler” Archetype is characterized by an aura that exudes authority and stability. The ruler brand will often make its product a symbol of success, of social status. Brands like Mercedes-Benz and Rolex illustrate this conquering approach characteristic of the ruler brand identity.

 

And  in Nutraceuticals ?

With its crown-shaped logo, its copper capsules and its “premium cosmetic” look, LYMA has all the makings of a ruler archetype. Its speech punctuated with terms such as “Ultimate”, “Powerful” or “Leader”, the brand appears as a clear example of a “ruler” brand.

3.12. THE CREATOR

The “Creator” archetype is characterized by a desire to unleash the world’s creativity. Creative brands will do everything in their power to ensure that its customers are able to express that creativity and will often create tools that allow the consumer to create easily and the way they see fit. Brands like Lego or Pinterest are excellent examples of creative brands that offer a new medium of expression.

 

And  in Nutraceuticals ?

Although COMPLIMENT pays great attention to the quality of its products, its approach focuses on customer experience and the possibility for customers to develop their own personalized nutraceutical cure. This approach is even more visible on the platform intended for healthcare professionals (Compliment pro), where the brand is at the service of prescribers to help them design the optimal support for their patients, while facilitating compliance.