Tattoos go from cool to corporate

Tattoos go from cool to corporate

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Tattoos go from cool to corporate

How far are you willing to take brand loyalty? Would you wear your devotion on your sleeve? How about your arm?

An increasing number of people are paying homage to their favorite brands by getting tattoos of the logos.

One force behind this phenomenon? Body art has come to be seen as a product like any other. Tattoos have gone from being a sign of rebellion to acceptance by the masses. They are an almost ubiquitous part of pop culture, just like the brands that have worked so hard to get there.

Brands also have mastered the art of selling lifestyles and ideals, which has, in return, inspired their consumers to develop very close psychological connections with them. Researchers talk about “brand-extended self-construals” when consumers use brands they hold dear as a way to define themselves. Think Nike, Apple, Volkswagen and, of course, Harley Davidson. All of these brands have a strong following and a sense of community.

Harley Davidson is probably the best example. It was one of the first brands widely used for tattoos. When the brand is inked under the skin it signifies a consumer’s adhesion to the brand’s supposed lifestyle.

The choice of brand logos and names also can be seen as an ironic take on consumption. This could be the case for a consumer wearing a luxury brand or logo tattoo, suggesting that although they might not be able to afford the products, they can still “wear” the tattoo.

From a psychological point of view, tattoos are concerned with both individual and social identity. That is, they are about helping individuals to construct and reach an ideal self — the person they would like to be.

Brands are becoming a crucial provider of identity. Consumer psychologists suggest that possessions could act as an extension of the self. Brand tattoos can therefore help individuals to become one with their possessions.

It also can be about taking on the achievements and attributes of the brand, especially for a sports-related […]