Brand mascots form an essential conduit between your business and your customer base. If you want to establish your brand in the hearts and minds of your client, then brand mascots are a great place to start. No one wants to be a faceless business, and creating a brand mascot lets you curate your brand’s face from scratch. Understanding more about the concepts and processes underpinning the most effective examples allows you and your team to create the perfect mascot.
What is a Brand Mascot?
Brand mascots embody your company’s most valued traits and attributes, creating a recognisable narrative that captures your essence for your audience. Crucially, they also deliver a reusable resource to fuel your marketing campaigns. Whether you’re designing your product packaging, your website graphics, an advert for social media, or creating mascot costumes for a product launch event, these smiling avatars always come in handy.
Popular Examples of a Brand Mascot
There are a few things to remember when researching other mascots to help you plan your own. Firstly, the diversity and individuality of successful mascots on the market speak to the wide range of brands with different audiences, goals, and products. Secondly, sometimes product quality drives mascot popularity rather than the other way around. However, in this confusion lies your opportunity to carve out a niche for your brand and its ideal mascot.
Brand mascots can be divided into three main groups: animals, people, and things.
Standouts in the animal category include Tony the tiger, Mickey mouse, the Duolingo owl, and the Compare the market meerkats. In the people category, frontrunners include the Monopoly man, Colonel Sanders, and Wendy from Wendy’s. The ‘thing’ category includes anthropomorphised objects like Clippy the paperclip, the Pixar lamp, and M&Ms.
In general, mascots either relate to the company’s founder (the Colonel), the product itself (M&Ms), or a core concept related to the brand (the Duolingo owl and wisdom). Others plug into a familiar story associated with the brand (Mickey mouse). Some just choose something that sounds like the name (Compare the Market meerkats).
Start Planning Your Brand Mascot
When it comes to brand mascots, form follows function. When you choose one or two of your brand’s most important concepts to embody in your mascot, you’ll have a great foundation for creation. Decide which aspect of your business you want to accentuate and convey to your audience: the jolly Ronald McDonald or the cheeky Hamburglar.
If you sell a product that’s compatible with a cartoon, then it’s far easier to anthropomorphise it into a mascot. Brand names containing the name of a person or animal often reflect that connection in their mascot, so brainstorm a few things related to your name. If you’re all about wisdom, energy, security, or joy, then your mascot should be too.
Make Your Mascot Come Alive
Brands create mascots to make their companies memorable. It’s no good making your mascot a generic 2D frog with no defining characteristics. Breathing life into your brand mascot helps your audience connect with it, and its valuable message.
To liven up your mascot, add shadows, depth, and 3D modelling to its design. Add a few bright colours or an exaggerated feature to catch the eye. You can even create short animated poses, gestures, or video sketches. Catchphrases and signature moves also help your mascot stand out, particularly when your campaigns come to life with mascot costumes.
Deploying Your Mascot
In the first instance, your mascot only exists as a concept, a sketch, and a prototype. It’ll start adding value to your business when it meets customers for the first time. Brand experts recommend bringing your mascot along to your website, content, packaging, adverts, events, and more.