One thing we always hear from MSPs during the discovery phase is they want to be different. At my MSP marketing company – Tech Pro Marketing – we manage websites and lead generation for growing MSPs. Most of the MSPs that come to us aren’t working with much. It’s usually an outdated website, a handful of short, poorly written blog posts, and no lead gen strategy.
When we build them a new website, one of the most common goals MSP owners list for their new website is differentiation.
“We don’t want to be seen as stereotypical computer geeks. We want to present our company as something extraordinary.”
The biggest hurdle in the process is simply defining what “extraordinary” means to each MSP.
The good news is there are definitive starting points out there.
These starting points are known as the 12 brand archetypes. In this article, I want to explain these concepts and how they translate to MSP websites.
What are brand archetypes?
The 12 brand archetypes we know in the business world come from Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung’s personality archetypes – which were outlined back in 1919. Jung’s theory is that at the core, all human personalities have one dominant trait that drives behavior patterns, desires, values, and motivations.
If you’re interested in learning more about Jung’s theory, you can download his book on archetypes here for free.
The 12 brand archetypes are:
- The Magician. Brands that identify – Disney, Polaroid, Dyson
- The Outlaw. Brands that identify – Harley Davidson, Red Bull, UFC
- The Explorer. Brands that identify – Jeep, The North Face, GoPro
- The Everyman. Brands that identify – Gap, Ikea, Toyota, Budweiser
- The Hero. Brands that identify – Nike, Duracell, FedEx
- The Caregiver. Brands that identify – Johnson & Johnson, Habitat for Humanity, Dove
- The Innocent. Brands that identify – Coca-Cola, Dove, Aveeno
- The Creator. Brands that identify – Apple, Lego, Tesla
- The Sage. Brands that identify – Google, BBC, Harvard
- The Ruler. Brands that identify – Mercedes, Rolex, American Express
- The Jester. Brands that identify – Mailchimp, Old Spice, M&Ms
- The Lover. Brands that identify – Godiva, Jaguar, Victoria’s Secret
Not every brand will fall definitively into one of these archetypes.
Take SmarterMSP for example. They are committed to being the top MSP blog, making no compromises in the quality of content they publish. But they also want to be relatable to MSP owners. That leaves them with a dominant archetype of the Ruler with shades of the Everyman.
When we onboard a new MSP, a big piece of the puzzle is nailing down the archetype they want to project to the world.
How does a brand archetype influence an MSP website?
The brand archetype touches nearly every aspect of an MSP website.
The first and obvious place is the copy. The language used throughout the website will need to reflect the brand archetype – and will play the biggest role in how you present your value to customers.
Second, it informs the website’s graphics and color scheme. If you’re rolling with the Everyman archetype, you’d need colors like blue and green – along with real pictures of your team to be relatable.
No matter what archetype you gravitate towards, there needs to be consistency across the website. If you have Outlaw type of language like “IT support, without the bullsh**”, you can’t match it with cartoony graphics and features – reflective of the Jester.
This is why graphic designers, copywriters, and developers need to be on the same page before any work on a website begins.
How do MSPs find their vibe?
We’ve helped hundreds of MSP owners build new websites and solidify their brand voices. It’s safe to say all of them are keen to break the stereotype of the typical IT person.
But where do you go from there?
The first place to start is with your core values.
You might be thinking “duh” right now but hear me out.
I’m not talking about the main core values. Every MSP’s mission is to provide excellent IT support to their customers. We need to get deeper than this to really dive into a potential brand archetype.
I’ll give you a real-life example from a past customer. This MSP owner started our discovery call by playing the famous Saturday Night Live clip of the stereotypical IT guy. He wanted his website to be the antithesis of this character.
He wanted IT support to be a friendly and positive experience for his customers – not a smug and condescending one. With this in mind, we determined the MSP’s archetype was dominantly the Everyman, with shades of the Sage. In other words, the brand needed to be relatable and friendly, yet still highly knowledgeable.
Within the website, we used copy along the lines of “IT is about people first, computers second.” In terms of the imagery, we used a warm, inviting color scheme and pictures of actual staff members (not stock images) throughout the website.
Pinpointing your brand archetype may sound like a tough task, but believe me, breaking the ice is the hardest part. Once we get the ball rolling in our discovery calls, it’s a pretty fun exercise.
What’s your brand archetype?
If you’ve never thought about this question before, you’re not alone.
Determining your MSP’s brand archetype and incorporating it throughout your website and branding materials isn’t exactly at the top of your job description.
That’s where we come in.
We’re constantly working to revamp and refine MSP websites at Tech Pro Marketing. Our goal is to help every MSP – regardless of the archetype – have the best website possible. If this is something you’re interested in, go to our website and schedule a strategy call.
Be sure to mention you read this article so our team can help you get the best website.
Nate Freedman is the CEO of Tech Pro Marketing and Ulistic. He runs the only MSP marketing group with 12+ years of experience and has helped MSPs generate over 20,000 high-quality leads. Tech Pro Marketing and Ulistic have earned over 150 5-star Google Reviews.
Photo: Freedomz / Shutterstock