20 Oct 2016by Georgie Cousens

What Do the Colours in Your Brand Mean to Your Marketing?

It’s time to repaint your walls so you head off to the hardware store to check out colour options. When you look at the paint sample cards on display, the options can be overwhelming. What to choose and why? Choosing colours to represent your brand is no easier. So much choice!

photo of colours

Colour Psychology

Colour psychology is both a fascinating and controversial topic. While there’s no doubt that colour influences people, the influence a colour has can differ per person. We’re further influenced by culture, experiences, and even gender.

Colour theory and symbolism can differ depending on what part of the world you are from. Some cultures associate black with mourning, while for others it’s white.

Emotions and colour are intrinsically entwined. We react to colour instinctually. Think how often we use expressions with colours to portray emotion. For example, we “see red” or we “feel blue”.

Context too plays a role in the meaning and effect of colour. When you are feeling cold you are more likely to be attracted to warm tones. Likewise, if you are feeling warm, cool tones might have a more positive effect on you.

To read more about the psychological impact associated with certain colours, see our blog post and infographic Colour Psychology.

Understanding colour

There are primary, secondary, and tertiary colours. The primary ones are the three colours that make all others. They are red, yellow, and blue. The secondary are green, orange, and purple. The tertiary are formed by mixing primary and secondary colours. They are yellow-orange, red-orange, red-purple, blue-purple, blue-green, and yellow-green.

Adding white or black to these pure colours creates tints and shades, while adding grey creates tones. Colours can be further divided into warm and cool.

When choosing colours for marketing purposes, it’s useful to pick a colour scheme using three colours. For example, your scheme might include:

•    Analogous – colours side by side on a colour wheel
•    Monochromatic – shades of the same colour
•    Triad – three colours from three triangulated points on the colour wheel
•    Complementary – two colours directly opposite each

To see just how many combinations you can come up with, check out the Adobe Kuler colour wheel.

Colour and marketing

Colour is a powerful marketing tool. It appeals to our visual senses and can impact on our mood and behaviour. Consumers place visual appearance and colour above many other factors.

The most used colours in business are:

•    Blue 58%
•    Red 36%
•    Green 24%

Entertainment is the same but the percentages change to 42%, 40%, and 20% respectively. (Source: MarketingProfs)

Like the rest of your branding, your choice of colours needs to remain consistent. Choose your scheme and stick with it.

One of the most important factors when choosing the colour scheme for your branding is to ensure that it fits with your product. What do you think might happen if you wrapped a white chocolate bar in a dark brown wrapper? The colour would set an expectation and customers would probably be disappointed because the wrapping doesn’t fit the product. Poor colour choice can have a detrimental effect.

Do you like the colour, do you feel it projects your brand, do you think your audience will respond to it? Did you answer yes to these questions? Then go ahead and run with it.

Do you now feel like an expert when it comes to working with colour? No? Then read on for more about using colour wisely.

If you’d like to incorporate colour in your marketing, get in touch with the team at Ideaseed. We can help colour your world wisely.

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