Brand Archetypes in Multifamily Marketing

For nearly 40 years, Primary has worked to create new brands for apartment communities, whether they be brand new construction, stabilized, redevelopments, or acquisitions. Our process of brand building is not unlike storytelling – we thoughtfully devise a strategy and positioning for each property from which all messaging and imagery are derived. The challenge within multifamily is to craft each once upon a time differently, so that every brand can resonate for its ideal audience in its precise location.

How do we do it? We know branding is way more than making a logo, devising sexy nomenclature, or testing the latest social media tactic. After all, we’ve been at this for a while. When it comes to building brands, at Primary we work to craft compelling narratives and earn lasting impressions through archetypes.

So, what’s an archetype, anyway?

Legendary psychologist Carl Jung rejected the teachings of Freud and helped build the foundation of modern-day psychiatry. One of his many contributions is the concept of archetypes. According to Jung, there are 12 distinct mythical, universal characters that live in our collective unconscious. These archetypes represent a pattern of ideas that persist across cultures, generations, and time, and have the power to stir human emotion. When leveraged in the realm of branding, archetypes can create a magnetic connection with their target audience. We bet you’ll recognize some of Jung’s main characters.

The Hero.

The hero archetype reigns triumphant! It represents bravery, candor, honesty, and truth. Determination, courage, and skill fuel hero brands to proudly save the day. Think Nike, FedEx, and Gillette.

The Lover.

Sometimes known as the seductress of the dozen archetypes, the lover desires pure human connection, deep relationships, intimacy, and attachment. Lover brands include Haagen-Dazs, Chanel, and Victoria’s Secret.

The Explorer.

The explorer will not be held down. For this adventurous and fearlessly independent pioneer, living a life of excitement and discovery is key. Explorer brands unsurprisingly include The North Face, Jeep, and Red Bull.

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How can brands use archetypes to their advantage?

Archetypes are rooted in basic human desires that occur instinctively within everyone. Not all desires drive all people equally, hence why the Chanel customer won’t necessarily have North Face gear in their closet. By tapping into primitive motivators that trigger all the feels with a designated target audience, brands can forge deep emotional connection and differentiation within a competitive set. 

Why leverage archetypes in multifamily marketing?

Maslow stressed that the need for shelter is a paramount physiological requirement, and as such, bolsters the foundation of his Pyramid of Needs. For multifamily communities, this means there is a universal need for the product, but every community must carefully position and distinguish itself for the best chance at success. 

Was Jung thinking specifically about multifamily communities?

Perhaps not, but Jung’s archetypes certainly allow us to convey distinctive characteristics of a development that prospective residents will intrinsically connect with on a subconscious level. In this way, the unique and alluring story of a community is told emotionally, turning prospects into residents who love where they live.  

Differentiation: it’s all about archetype.

Thanks to the power of archetype, yet-another-multifamily-community can suddenly stand apart from the crowd with a memorable personality all its own. A community that appeals to trailblazing hikers and bikers, or enterprising young professionals, suburban zen-masters, cosmopolitan socializers, and more – there are brands that speak to each, and it’s our point of pride in building them.

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About Primary. We’re an award-winning marketing agency that specializes in bringing places to life and bringing people to those places. For nearly 40 years, we’ve helped savvy owners, operators, and managers in real estate, hospitality, and beyond conquer their business goals through brilliant brand building, 3D rendering, digital strategy, lead gen, and more. How can we help you? Drop us a line at: or at our Contact Page here.

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