What is your favorite person like? Traits such as a good sense of humor, honesty, and reliability likely come to mind. Now, what happens when we apply those human characteristics to your brand? Take a look at what a company personality is and how to build one that evokes that same kind of “favorite person” feelings.

Table of Contents

Watch the world’s largest HR encyclopedia be built in real-time

Subscribe to get a weekly roundup email of all our new entries

What Is a Company Personality?

A company (or brand) personality is the attribution of human qualities or characteristics to a business. But this isn’t a simple topic, so let’s dive deeper.

What is personality? A human’s personality is a unique set of traits, such as temperament, outlook, sociableness, ect. It defines how a person interacts with the world around them. If we apply the same concept to a company, we see that its personality is how the brand interacts with the world around it. In other words, it is the foundation on which an organization builds the way people respond emotionally to its product or service, mission, and its presence overall.

Why Is a Company’s Personality So Important?

In the age of instant access to the internet and booming social media platforms, this is more important now than ever before. Here are a few ways in which your company personality plays an essential role in your company’s success.

  • Engaging your target audience. When companies design their company personality, it is with engagement in mind. It’s a way to humanize a business to connect with their ideal consumer. In the case of utilizing a company personality as a recruiting tool, this means a way of engaging with the perfect candidate, whether they’re looking for work or not.
  • Increase social media traffic. As social media is a primary place your company personality shines, having an effective company personality means an increase of social media activity. With that being said…
  • People follow brands they relate to. Just as birds of a feather flock together, people “flock” to brands that resonate with them. This is important in light of the fact that 9 out of 10 people do business with brands they follow on social media. From a recruitment standpoint, this is incredibly impactful.
  • Personality drives your reach. Relatable content receives more interaction and traffic on social media platforms. Having a strong and clearly defined company personality guides content that caters directly to your target audience.

Types of Company Personalities

There are as many company personality types as there are human ones. A company leverages their strategically crafted company personality to resonate with their target market. We’ll look at a few common and effective types below, but keep in mind that an effective company personality can fit into more than one category.

Relatable/Lifestyle

These are the companies who portray themselves as down to earth through posting content centered on everyday things like hobbies, struggles and lifestyle choices. There’s more than one way companies accomplish this relatability. Some common ways are through humor, support, and information. Some examples of this style are:

Transparent

This type of company personality prioritizes honesty. They have every ingredient visible and will likely post content showing the behind-the-scenes parts of their company’s inner workings. Some examples of this are:

Light-hearted

These companies are quick-witted in their interactions with the public. Some push the limits in their use of vulgarity or coarse humor, but not all. There are companies who are non-offensive while still leveraging humor to help their brand stand out. Some examples of this are:

Family-oriented

If you’ve seen an advertisement for this company, it will most likely include pictures or mentions of pets, kids and what comes along with having them. The goal is to resonate with family heads by promoting the safety and usefulness of their products to be used by or around the members of our home we cherish the most. Some examples of this are:

How to Shape Your Own Company Personality

Defining and shaping your company personality is pivotal to resonating with the target consumer. How do you go about it?

Step 1: Define Your Mission and Audience

What is the main focus of your company? Define your mission clearly. Expanding on your organization’s mission statement is a good place to start. From there, factor in any charities your company supports or promotes. Next, clearly define your audience. You want to reach everywhere, but what specific demographic is your product geared towards? Your brand personality should mirror your ideal customer. If people do business with those they know, like, and trust, then your ultimate goal is to make your business relatable, agreeable, and reliable to those you wish to reach. Once you have a draft, get feedback from people at various levels of your company. If you can, run it by trusted individuals who are a part of the target demographic.

Step 2: Personify Your Character Traits

Once the mission has been expanded and the target audience established, specify what character traits your target demographic finds appealing. What are their pain points? Motivators? If your business was the best friend of your perfect customer, what would it be like? It is helpful at this point to create an idea board where you can have keywords, character traits, and photo references in one place.

Step 3: Clean It Up

As we all know, a person can be “too much.” Don’t let that be the personality of your company. Set boundaries to the character traits your brand personality aims to capture. A prime example of a “character boundary” would be use of coarse language, what kind of humor is acceptable, or even whether or not humor is acceptable at all (such as in the case of the company personality of a children’s hospital).

Step 4: Use Catered Content

The main place company personality shines is social media and advertising. The way you schedule content, the type of content your company page interacts with, and the substance of your business’ content itself should all bring your company personality to life.

Questions You’ve Asked Us About Company Personality

Yes. But it is not the same as a company’s image. A company’s image is the finely crafted first impression the brand gives off. An effective brand personality contributes to a powerful brand image.
Yes and no. If you fail to clearly outline your company’s personality, it will lack reliability and consistency, which will limit its ability to reach your target consumer. On the flip side, do you know two people who just don’t mesh? You get along with them both, but for whatever reason all they can do is misunderstand one another. The same is true for a company relating to the public. You want to make your company personality as likable as possible, of course, but there will always be personalities that just won’t “mesh” with your brand’s. This is why it is important to intentionally shape your company personality with your target consumer in mind. That way, your brand personality will “mesh” with the right people.
An effective company personality affects the bottom line by its role in a successful social media presence and advertising, both of which drive sales. It also impacts the talent you hire, as a strong brand personality is essential to a solid passive social media recruitment strategy.

Kayla is the Chief Innovation Officer at Hero Culture, where the passion is to create company cultures of retention using the power of personality.

Want to contribute to our HR Encyclopedia?

Posts You Might Like

Want to join our network of contributing HR professionals?

Scroll to Top

Submit a Question