Louder than Words:
10 reasons to use metaphors in (brand)
by LUCIA TREZOVA
Prague, May 2014
Metaphor is originally a figure of speech
based on resemblance = one thing is used
to refer to another thing in order to show or
suggest that they are somehow similar.
METAPHOR IS A TYPE OF AN ANALOGY
„Knowledge is power“
„You are my star“
Since metaphors don’t have to be only verbal,
the essence of the metaphor is:
experiencing one thing
or thinking about one thing
in terms of another
EACH METAPHOR CONSISTS OF TWO
ELEMENTS: A TARGET AND A SOURCE
Both: target and the source are part of, in principle, infinitely
expanding networks of related meanings, necessary for producing
metaphors, called connotations.
The target is what we try to
describe, to make a meaning
of by using metaphor.
The source is a „vehicle“, the concept
that is used to predicate something
about the target.
domains: the target
domain and the
„Metaphor is metamorphosis. It is a
beautiful sweet lie.
I say one thing, but I mean
Why are metaphors so
METAPHORS INCREASE INFORMATION
RETENTION AND ENHANCE ITS RECALL
Metaphors are by our brains processed
differently than literal speech
Cognitive scientists proved by fMRI, that
words describing motion highlight our
motor cortex. While listening to
sentences containing textural
metaphors, they found activity in the
part of the brain that’s involved when we
feel surfaces. When the metaphor
alludes on the smell, the olfactory area
of the brain is being activated, and so
The more parts of the
brain are engaged with a
given content, the higher
number of neuronal
associations is made =
FOR THE FUTURE
METAPHORS SPARK OFF
An insightful rich metaphor triggers the chain of
associations, meanings, images, memories, emotions, that
all together not only hooks the recipient’s attention
and curiosity, but also increases embedding of new
information and remembering of a presented content.
Metaphors are fantasy provoking
Metaphors are shortcuts to our
Emotions that metaphors generate often tackle our inner,
primary, fundamental feelings, linked to our basic human
desires and needs. These feelings are often hardly accessible
by our conscious mind, thus beyond our rational consideration.
Their targeting have, therefore, an extremely strong
METAPHORS BYPASS OUR CRITICAL
Metaphors tackle our
culture inside us
The metaphor often triggers dense net of connonations, that are
from that moment partly beyond our individual control.
This net is created by the sediments of the history, by the
cultural layers, by references to other texts– so, attacking
our archetypal super-ego.
This often enables sending the message across without risking
its rejection caused by the individual analytical judgement.
Metaphor provides holistic, complete,
instant and intuitive definition of the target
One insightful metaphor can explain the target in
its full complexity, in its wholeness, defying
clearly the object and therefore to help
foster the adoption of new ideas, concepts,
METAPHORS ALLOW GREATER
UNDERSTANDING OF THE TARGET CONCEPT
METAPHORS SAVE TIME
People see more things than
they can describe with words
Therefore one exposure to image-evoking
metaphoric representation using mindful analogy saves
us a lot of time of clarifying the metaphor’s target:
relations of its parts, its usage, relationships to other
objects, ideas and so on.
Linking your metaphor’s target with an
„unexpected“ metaphor's source or mapping so
far „unexplored“ feature may illuminate
the different, so far neglected characteristic of your
target or even cause discovery of brand new
understanding, generating true „aha“ experience.
METAPHORS CAN PROVIDE AN UNIQUE VIEW
ON AN ORDINARY THING
Metaphor awakes creativity
Some metaphors can create so firm models of reality
(e.g. „Life is war“), that they will determine all others
associated attitudes and justify our consequent behavior.
Some metaphors may even become
scientific models (Descartes’ model
„humans as machines“ affect not only
allopathic medicine, but also e.g. attitudes
toward people in organizations: people as
METAPHORS CREATE AND LEGITIMIZE
INDIVIDUAL AND CULTURAL NORMS
Metaphors are words
we live by
By metaphor you can intentionally trick your
audience: you can choose which product’s, idea’s,
concept’s features you show, highlight, communicate
and which you neglect, hide and omit.
METAPHORS ARE MANIPULATIVE
Use of the powerful metaphor in the
beginning of your presentation
might create a so strong context, that all
other information, opinions presented
will be perceived and processed by our
minds under the influence of this
METAPHORS CREATE STRONG CONTEXTS...