High-End Brands: Understanding the Psychological Symbolism of Home

CastleWhen high-end brands touch timeless, universal human emotions about the meaning of Home, a deeper connection is possible.

All too often, internal discussions about marketing start and end with product features and benefits. Manufacturers tend to define brands solely by their engineering or design, without taking the time to discover the underlying psychological relevance to the consumer.
Intuitively, we all know that the concept of Home represents so much more than a place to live. Regardless of time and culture, human beings have very deep, often subconscious feelings wrapped around the concept of Home. The psychologist Carl Jung referred to bedrock, universal human emotions like these as ‘archetypes.’  Our associations around Home are extremely emotional, conjuring up powerful connections with self-esteem, security and our feeling of place in the world.
For high-end home brands, acknowledging those deep-seated, often unconsciousness human emotions can make all the difference.
Below are three basic emotional touchstones for high-end home brands. See which is most relevant to your brand, and which subtle signals can help you touch consumers in deeply meaningful ways.
1. Home as Castle.
Castle is such an enduring metaphor because it represents success, status and our ability to provide for family. It’s why so many high-end homes feature raised elevations, columns and oversized front doors with heavy brass knockers. Castle is also represented in the home by high ceilings, stone, strong appliances, big fireplaces and natural wood. It feels hand made, thick, powerful, eternal and ready to hand down to future generations. Castle occasions are more likely to be special events than Wednesday night supper.
2. Home as Fortress.
Fortress may seem similar to Castle, but actually it’s more about finding refuge, independence and safety in an uncertain world. Fortress is represented as private space, a sanctuary, far from the outside world. It feels secure and hidden from view. The home that impresses us from the road is a Castle, while the home we can’t even see is a Fortress. Imagery that suggests Fortress includes high stone walls, security systems and protected interior courtyards.
3. Home as Playground.
Playground is a place of comfort and welcome. It is expressed through friends and family, casual relaxation and sharing good times. It’s why high-end homes feature elaborate media rooms, his and her master bathrooms, and walk-in wine cellars. Playground symbolizes the place where we can let our hair down and fully be ourselves. Images that conjure up Playground include candid family moments, pets, laughter or a story told over a glass of wine.
Aligning brands with emotional touchstones like these can help you connect on a far deeper emotional level. Explore where your brand fits in the human psyche, and tell the stories that are universal to us all.

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