A System of Meaning Management
The first-ever systematic approach to successful brand meaning
"This book illuminates the most ancient grooves in our mental architecture, which Carol Jung described as "archetypes", and shows how they can be employed to bring meaning and profit to a brand. There is a nascent power here, which, if understood correctly, can bring a rare vitality to a brand or a corporation."
From the Foreward by Alex Kroll
former Creative Director,
CEO and Chairman of Young & Rubicam
Some brands are so extraordinary that they become larger-than-life, symbolic of entire cultures, and used and admired by consumers the world over.
But in spite of all the books and banter about branding, few companies come even close to developing iconic identities for their brands.
New Internet brands are being born every minute, with lots of flash and fanfare, but often with no real human connection to make them truly relevant. At the same time, mature brands are diluting their identities in an attempt to respond to shifting trends, while other others attempt to graft meaning onto products in artificial and ineffectual ways.
As a result, millions of advertising and promotional dollars are being squandered.
Understanding and leveraging archetypal meanings-that is, finding the soul of your brand and then expressing it in ways that tap into universal feelings and instinctsare key prerequisites to effective marketing in today's intensely competitive and complex environment. Archetypeswhich can be found in reoccurring patterns in art, literature, myth and fablesshow us the way. Carol Pearson and Margaret reveal that when these deep psychic imprints are understood and employed, brands not only gain meaning, but companies can also gain market share and increase shareholder value.
Yet, until now, no system has been available to help guide the management of archetypal meaning. Best-selling author Carol Pearson has spent 30 years developing systematic psychological frameworks and applying and field-testing them in business and educational settings.
Margaret Mark is the strategist behind many of today's most enduring and successful brands, from AT&T and Kraft Foods to General Motors and Madison Square Garden. Together, Mark and Pearson have created the first systematic methodology for leveraging archetypal meanings to build successful brands.
In an easily accessible way, The Hero and the Outlaw offers a clearly structured system that all business and marketing professionals can follow and replicate. After presenting the compelling concept of archetypal meaning, the authors demonstrate specific methods for implementing this concept into real-world setting, including: how to understand the deep meaning of your product category and "claim" it for your brand, how to assess the competitive landscape from an archetypal perspective, how to connect with customers more deeply, and how to tell your brand's story in a way that echoes the most enduring and beloved story patterns, the world over.
Readers will learn how to strip away surface information to discover the deeper core meanings that can make a product, service, or organization a winning brand. Illuminating the untapped potential underlying every stage of the marketing mix, the authors also show how the brand story begins with the product itself, and can be communicated not only in the advertising, but also in event marketing, public relations, organizational culture/policies, and philanthropic efforts. Such efforts flow naturally when a company knows its core values and lives the great story of the archetype that embodies them. The books' fascinating culmination puts it all together with an illumination of how the deep meaning of a product category, itself can inspire a unique and compelling brand identity. This final chapter also shows how products can be effectively marketed in ways that reinforce positive potentials within customers and the society as a whole--and generally, do no harm.
A first in business literature, The Hero and The Outlaw offers both a fascinating examination of those few extraordinary brands that have already achieved archetypal status, as well as a sound and proven methodology readers can use to achieve their own iconic brand identity-an identity that will withstand the test of time, cross lifestyle and cultural boundaries, and translate into exceptional success.
Praise for The Hero and the Outlaw
"For those wise enough to use this system, the outcome will be consistently more powerful brands and higher ROI. I have seen it applied, and it works every time."
Peter Georgescu, Chairman Emeritus, Young & Rubicam
"Mark and Pearson are true humanists. They apply their understanding of common psychic experiences in the unlikely arena of advertising, and then expertly guide marketers to manage their brands' meaning to maximize their commercial effectiveness without causing negative social effects."
Ruth Wooden, President of the National Parenting Association and former ten year President of the Advertising Council
"This provocative and insightful book could and should revolutionize the world of marketing."
Margaret Wheatley, best-selling author, Leadership and the New Science and co-author, A Simpler Way
"What a great concept! Anyone with a genuine interest in marketing and branding will find this provocative and enlightening book extremely valuable."
Bob Wehling, Global Marketing Officer, Proctor & Gamble
"The Hero and the Outlaw will soon become the guiding light, the port in the storm, that will make our meandering and lengthy creative journey light years faster. I only wish it had been written years earlier."
Linda Kaplan Thaler, President and CEO, The Kaplan Thaler Group
"It reads with the fascination of fiction, and it provides a last remaining hope for managing any meaningful brand differentiation in the marketplace today."
Arlene Brickner, Vice President Creative Services and Public Relations, Coach