Choosing your mascot: the pitfalls to avoid
A mascot must represent added value to your brand. However, there are a lot of mistakes you can make that will spoil your brand. To help you create your mascot, here are the pitfalls to avoid.
Your mascot should always look neutral and without clichés. Indeed, the physical and cultural clichés can shock consumers as it will convey a narrow image of your business. For this reason, then avoid caricatures and stereotypes.
We can for example cite the brand Banania which has chosen friend Y'a bon as its mascot. He was a Senegalese character with an exaggerated smile, a colonialist dress and little knowledge of the French language. Obviously, this direct relationship between Senegal and the colonialist era was not unanimous. The impact was such that the brand was forced to remove its mascot .
A mascot too present
Your mascot must be endearing and remarkable. However, it must always remain a communication "tool" between your brand and your customers. Indeed, your brand and your image must be the priority. For this reason, it's important that she doesn't steal the show by being too prominent.
A mascot that is too present and overused will be easily recognizable by consumers. However, it will overshadow your brand and consumers will only know your mascot. Your products will then be less attractive to them from the moment there is no effigy of your mascot on the packaging.
We can for example quote Mr Clean which has been exploited so much that a large number of consumers do not know the brand that created it. Unlike, Cetelem's mascot is more discreet. Indeed, this mascot is very present but can not speak.
Too abrupt a change
Some companies already have their mascot but want to change it to adapt to new trends. It might sound like a good idea, but too sudden a change could tarnish your company's image.
It should be remembered that the main purpose of a mascot is to create an attachment with consumers. This means that over the years, they will be attached to your mascot and will have made it the image of your company. Killing a mascot will then create disenchantment.
To illustrate this all-too-frequent trap, we can cite the Malabar brand, which suddenly replaced its mascot with the Mabulle cat. Since the former mascot had been in the limelight for years, this sudden change drew negative comments from consumers who were disappointed to see their childhood character replaced by another.
If you really want to change your mascot, it is necessary to start a gradual change. However, changing your mascot too often could make you lose the advantage of having one: a good visual identity in the eyes of your consumers.