Though some may scoff at the notion that color can drastically influence the behavior a buyer who’s quickly walking by a shelf at a grocery store or scrolling through hundreds of items on a website, there’s actually pretty good proof that the hues we see everyday are associated with triggers in our minds that can either prompt us to buy a product, or to move on to the next. Something as simple as color can sway consumers one way or the other, and utilizing the different hues and combinations with inherent and associative color psychology may be one way to help your business succeed.
But why is that…? Well, many think that colors that can be paired with elements found in nature offer up certain universal expectations, feelings, and memories. For example, a logo featuring a green tree can make us think of nature and health. However, after the last century of mass product consumption and output, colors have also taken on identities of their own. Now, relationships with certain colors that have been used by popular companies to brand themselves and their products over the years can be made by consumers as well, which can sometimes influence their buying decisions.
Let’s take a look at 7 of the most commonly used colors in branding to get a better understanding of what these logos and packaging products tell us to do when we see them…
Traditionally blue is a color that’s often associated with calmness and connectivity, which may be because of its natural association to the sea and the sky. Depending on the shade of blue used, a print ad or a company logo can connote “strength” as well. For example, AT&T’s lighter-hued logo lets of a vibe of tranquility and dependability, while the deep-blue Lowe’s logo seems both dependable and durable.
Ahh, red. Red can be seen in pretty much any store you may venture in to, and that’s because of its ability to stir the senses get consumers excited about a product or service. When we see the color red, we think “sweet” and “daring,” and many companies and brands have utilized red in their advertisements to electrify the market and to create a large-scale buzz regarding their products or services. It’s of no surprise that some of today’s more conglomerate companies utilize the color red, as they’re often looking to appeal to consumers en masse.
Because of its in-your-face vibrancy, the color orange is often associated with youthfulness and is commonly used in markets that work to attract younger consumers. It’s of no surprise that logos and product packaging that use the color orange are often of a more expressive and confident design as well.
“Fresh.” “Lush.” “Health…” These are words commonly associated with the color green largely because the natural world around us is so made up of it. Because of this, companies that are involved in environmental services or food-based products often utilize the color green in order to convey a trusting sense of wellbeing and vigorous growth that will keep customers coming back for more.
Yellow is everywhere when it comes to marketing and branding, and the reason may be because it appeals to people on many different levels. Businesses can reach masses of people by employing yellow in their designs, given that the color conveys a sense of “warmth” and “openness” that is inviting and welcoming to consumers. Interestingly, yellow is often used more when products of companies are diverse and can’t always be tied to a single item/product line—it imparts the overall feeling of the company rather than the products themselves.
Just as it’s archetypally defined, when it comes to branding the color white is linked to notions of “cleanliness” and “purity.” When branding professionals want to make a conservative and safe choice, white is often utilized. Interestingly, newer products, or products looking to convey a sense of simplicity often use white to lure people in who may be wary of attempting or trying something new. (Even though certain products may not be “simple” at all in theory—think about Apple’s laptops and all of the knowledge a user must possess to use it!) High-end products are often wrapped in largely stark white packaging to create a sense of elegance and sophistication as well, and appeal to wealthier clientele.
Using a commanding amount of black in a logo or package design creates a very bold statement indeed. Black connotes power, authority, and reliability, as well as a sense of mystique (depending on the product). Commonly seen as “sexy,” adding touches of gold, silver, or red can heighten the sensation of elegance to create a more luxurious look for a product or logo.
The bottom line is that colors do play a very important role in the way that brands are perceived. A company’s entire image can be changed based on the feelings and memories associated with colors, and they should always be carefully chosen and paired to match a business’ personality and what they are trying to convey. By now, most business professionals have at least an inkling of the world of color psychology; however, the nuances that could serve to establish your brand should be looked at very finely in order to foster the most successful product or service outcomes.