Regardless of the size and industry of your business, understanding the power of color psychology and choosing the right brand colors can help you attract and convert your ideal target audience.
Did you know that 85% of shoppers believe color is the biggest motivator to purchase a product? And were you aware of the fact that color increases brand recognition by a whopping 80%?
With stats like that in mind, it’s crucial for businesses to pick the right brand colors for their logos, websites, and other marketing materials.
Once you’ve established your brand’s message and goal, it’s time to determine which color will work best.
You need to understand the emotional associations that people have with each color.
Below is a summary of brand colors and their meanings and the unique impact they have on human mood and behavior.
The Psychology of Brand Colors
Red is a loud, modern, and playful color. Depending on the country, people associate it with fortune, passion, excitement, anger, seduction, and even danger.
Using red in marketing is a classic trick because it commands attention and makes one stand out from the crowd. It stimulates shoppers by creating urgency and invites them to take physical action quickly. Whether alone or combined with other colors, red is a powerful choice.
Additionally, the color has proved to stimulate appetite, which is why many restaurant logos use it. Other industries that use red are sports, retail, fitness, and travel. Nonetheless, try avoiding this color for sectors such as finance and health care products as this color is too aggressive for them.
Yellow is associated with the sun. So, it evokes a feeling of happiness, positivity, and friendliness. It also promotes affordable, warm, and youthful energy.
The color is an attention grabber, but be careful not to overuse it as it can cause fatigue. The ‘feel-good’ color can help strengthen brand image in the entertainment, baby care, leisure, food, and energy sector.
However, it’s not powerful enough for finance, heating, travel, luxury, IT, and fashion brands.
Green is the easiest color on the human eyes, which is why it’s the international color for peace, nature, renewal, and relaxation. In the US, people also consider green a color of wealth as that’s the color of the dollar notes. However, in this example, green is weaker than gold.
Green is perfect for promoting agriculture, healthcare, education, energy, and food industries.
Nevertheless, despite its positive connotation, the color is too week for the fashion and transport industries because green is not calling to action (like red does). If you do want to experiment with green, we recommend you mix it with more active colors such as yellow, red, or even white.
Blue is the favorite color of most of the population and a popular color choice for many as it puts people at ease. It symbolizes calmness by reminding them of the sky and ocean. Additionally, blue is associated with confidence, trust, maturity, and security and gives logos a credible, serious, and professional vibe. It’s a safe and obvious choice for technology, real estate, finance, transport, and travel industries.
However, blue is too mundane and serious for beauty, fashion, and luxurious products as it also triggers negative feelings such as coldness and rigidity. Be wary of blue in the food sector as it’s believed to suppress appetite (unlike red). If you decide to go with blue, you’ll need to find a way to stand out as the color is used in half of all logos.
Black evokes a sophisticated, prestigious, elegant, and bold feeling. It’s a symbol of power, prestige, mystery, and seduction too. Without a doubt, it’s a color that many commonly associate with luxurious and expensive products. And imagine combining black with gold? It’s very classy! Some examples are the car, repair, and fashion industries.
If you want your brand is to portray an economical and affordable image, we recommend you stay away from black. Black is a traditional color of mourning in most of the countries in North America, Africa, and Europe, which is why you won’t see the color in healthcare, baby, family, food, or financial products.
White is the symbol of virtue, cleanliness, softness, innocence, sterility, and peace. Without a surprise, it is popular in the healthcare sector, in the cleaning business, child, and luxury products. The ‘germ-free’ feeling can have a positive and negative implication, so be careful using it. White can also represent isolation and emptiness.
White also helps make other colors in your logo more perceptible and vibrant. For example, Nintendo mixes white with red, Swarovski combines it with black and silver, and Milka ice cream mixes white with purple.
Purple is associated with mystery, royalty, elegance, and sophistication. It also has a mysterious element which represents spirituality, and it can bring a magical element to your branding.
It’s also associated with wealth and luxury, but it’s not seen as an overly serious color. Purple is believed to be a young and innovative color that attracts customers between ages 18-25 as old audiences connect purple with aloofness, decadence, and suppression.
Purple elevates beauty, art, health care, and clothing brands. Even a small amount of this color in your logo will take your product to the next level.
Orange is the ideal color if you want to blend the optimism of yellow and the energy and passion of red. It’s a cheerful, fun, and creative color that evokes both an adventurous and friendly feeling.
The color stands out from the crowd, and it provokes an impulse to purchase. It’s the perfect choice for entertainment, construction, farming, and pharmaceutical products. Be careful if your brand is trying to appear feminine, luxurious, or serious because orange does not involve those traits to consumers. It’s also a good idea to balance orange with some neutral colors.
Also, keep in mind that out of all brand colors, people associate orange with cheapness the most. So, avoid using it is wore expensive or luxurious products.
If you have a clear message for your target audience, choosing your brand colors should be easy. Research what your competitors are doing and don’t feel obliged to select the same hues as them.
Don’t be afraid to stand out by choosing an original color scheme that still achieves your desired psychological positioning goal. If appropriate, feel free to combine two or three brand colors.
Also, don’t forget to understand the international symbolic meanings of your logo colors. Research has shown that a person’s cultural upbringing influences color preferences.