The increasing use of mascot costumes is a good example of a trend that UK organisations, clubs and societies have been slow to mimic – mascot costumes have been incredibly popular in the United States for decades.
Why is this? Obvious cultural differences explain this – High School team loyalty, the ‘cheer leader’ culture, for example, something that has also not been adopted as widespread as in the US. Possibly the more reserved mentality of the Brits is also a reason.
So why is this changing? … why are mascot costumes becoming more and more popular in the United Kingdom?
This is a complex area. Simplistically, one reason might be that the UK has been absorbing cultural sensibilities from across the Atlantic and the surge in popularity and use of the internet has escalated this.
Brand marketing has also started to understand the psychology of the mascot costume and see the character represented as the mascot costume as engendering loyalty to their brand. This has been prevalent in US society for many year. A good example of an industry that is making widespread use of characters – which can then be developed into mascot costumes – as part of their brand identity is the insurance aggregator market in the UK.
Benefits? A cute brand identity can sometimes make a market that isn’t traditionally know for being ‘touchy feel’ more accessible. Mascot costumes are a great way of brining a 2D brand ident to life and are great for social media and viral marketing. Relatively speaking, creation of a mascot costume is also low compared to other more traditional marketing routes.