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  • Writer's pictureDeonna Lindsay-Lewis

Build A Sticky Guy/Girl Next Door Brand!

Updated: 6 days ago

I Am Everyday People


Howdy! you're our quintessential BFF in the game of life, where simplicity is our bible and "acceptance" isn’t just a buzzword, it’s a lifestyle. Picture this: your favorite pair of jeans, a pair of chucks, a rustic tee with the phrase “I Am The Norm” stated simply and boldly right in the center, and a checkered button up worn casually on top or wrapped around your waste; this is your uniform of choice whether going to work, a backyard barbecue, or casually joining in on sidewalk conversations. Why? Because, you’re not about hidden status symbols or ostentatious displays of leadership, you democratize fashion in a way that leadership is accessible, not announced. 

Your brand feels like meeting up at the neighborhood pub, that cozy bench outside the local country store or shopping on Main St. as a community event. It’s all mom-and-pop shops with unassuming decor where the food is good, and “Cheers! Everybody knows your name.” In a world that often feels too disconnected and complex, you build community in a way that lets everyone know that they’re okay just the way they are. That’s right! Give you solid rural and hard-working values any day. That, and the belief that QUALITY and WELL-MADE are birthrights, not excuses for a hefty price tag.

Standing for the silent majority-belonging to something and fitting in are ideal concepts around here. You don’t stand out but stand unique by quietly challenging the elite — think labor unions and worker-owned cooperatives. This ethos creates a culture where each individual’s worth is recognized and celebrated, mirroring the belief in democratic decision-making and pride in craftsmanship.

You transform everyday encounters into moments of genuine connection and infuse the ordinary with extraordinary warmth. You’re the hug of familiarity, the nod of understanding, the friendly face in a crowd, the reliable neighbor with practical solutions, and the brand that celebrates the beauty in simplicity; where every interaction is an invitation to come home.


So why build a Guy/Girl Next Door brand? You first exist to create a place of acceptance for yourself (through humble, honest-to-good work) THEN add value to others by providing genuine connection and friendship, making them feel less alone, and by providing a place where they fit in exactly as they are.


You create experiences that make people feel more SEEN, NORMAL, and INCLUDED. You'd just as soon play in some traffic (self-deprecating much? Yes, that you are!) before putting on airs, or creating an elitist environment. And with that, you despise artifice and hype. Your messaging doesn't take itself too seriously (using down-to-earth language) and encourages others to just be "Real", honest and kind; to relish in the celebration of ordinary for the purpose of one beautiful collective.



While there are universal truths about the Guy/Girl Next Door archetype, there are shades to this! On one end of the spectrum, you may simply be one of many; a friend, or someone who takes pride in belonging to a group. On the other end, you may be considered an advocate for democracy or one voice standing for the rights of many.


Here is the quick and dirty hit list of traits, brand do's and don'ts, themes and IN THE WILD examples to inspire your sticky Guy/Girl Next Door brand elements!

  • Friendly

  • Honest

  • Down-to-earth

  • Hard-working

  • Simple/Understated

  • Practical

  • Inclusive

  • Down-home

  • Humble/ No frills

  • Honest

  • Approachable

  • Down-to-earth

  • Accessibility

  • Fit in

  • Belong to a group

  • Folk stories/music

  • Celebrate Ordinary

  • Show normal, everyday parts of your life

  • Work hard

  • Speak simply/plainly

  • Friendly

  • Be a good citizen

  • Neighborhood festivals

  • Shop local

  • Authentic, well-made products

  • The Underdog

  • Function over Beauty

  • Affordable / Frugal

  • Straightforward, Utilitarian Presentation

  • Barn Raisings/ Bake Sales / Community Gardens

  • Reliability

  • Equity

  • Wholesome

  • Hype

  • Elitism

  • Exclusive

  • Ornate

  • Over-the-top

  • Artifice

  • Individualism

  • Luxury/Expensive

  • Bragging

  • Take yourself too serious

  • Stand out

  • Frills/Fancy

  • Put on airs

  • Designer

  • Popular/Trends

  • Provocative

Your offers lead your audience to a point of connection (think social gatherings or reunions) or shared identity. Consider:

  • Lead magnet: A DIY Checklist

  • Hero product: Low-cost guide + free community

  • High-end service: Low-cost Monthly Membership

On-brand themes + perspectives to jumpstart a brilliant brand story!


Stories that connect. The treasure in your story lies in your ability to understand what your audience is feeling and where they come from. Tell us your moment of epiphany- the moment you felt the need to create a space, a community, or to deliver a typically out-of-reach service/product to a group of people. Let us in on this moment by sharing a normal, everyday activity that could've happened to any of us. For example, tell us of how you were shopping in the yogurt aisle and couldn't make a decision between all of the options. I mean, what in the Yoplait, Oui, and Chobani? You'd much prefer Siggi's but with a better price tag ;)


  • Small town dreams

  • All for one

  • Work Hard. Stay Humble

  • Southern Hospitality (and other down-home values)

  • A tribe called.....

Word Bank//

  • Real

  • Healthy

  • People

  • Friend

  • Hard Work

  • BFF

  • Community

  • Human

  • Guy/Gal

  • Common ground

  • Clubhouse

  • Cooperation/ Coop

  • Fast Friends

  • Normal

  • Social

  • Hospitality

  • Habit

  • Honest

  • Rustic

  • Simple

  • Family

  • Bootstraps

  • Everyday

Be inspired by other Guy/Girl Next Door brands out in the wild!

  • Trader Joes

  • Ikea

  • Levis

  • Habitat for Humanity

  • Drew Barrymore

  • Rachael Ray


Sticky brands carefully blend two or three archetypes into an irresistible cocktail to tell a richer, more nuanced story and connect in ways that feel more human and desirable! Grab this free slingshot to help you craft your sticky brand right now!


The information shared within this article is based on the psychology-backed work of Margaret Mark and Carol S. Pearson as well as Margaret Hartwell and Joshua C. Chen.

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