Which Colours Should You Choose for Your Branding?
Marketers have long understood the importance of colours in boosting sales and why correct, thoughtful usage is vital for effective branding. A 2006 study by researchers at the University of Winnipeg found that “… people make up their minds within 90 seconds of their initial interactions with either people or products” and 62 to 90 percent of this assessment is based on colours.
Colours, tones, and shades are a key element in how people react to their environment and they have evolved to represent a range of emotions. Red, for example, symbolises passion and energy while blue is a more calming, relaxing, and trustworthy colour. Both are used extensively in branding (think Coca Cola and Red Bull for the colour red, while blue is frequently used by government and financial institutions to reinforce trust and integrity).
Therefore the way the brain registers and reacts to colour has a big influence on the way you brand your company. However, which colour (or colours) should you choose to best promote your brand?
This depends on a number of factors.
Who is your intended audience?
Consider the demographic of those to whom you are pitching your products or services to. A colour scheme that may work for younger people (such as a vibrant yellow or green) may not work as well for an older demographic where more conservative tones such as blue would be more appropriate. Tailor your brand in accordance with your targeted audience.
What is your brand’s personality?
It is important to match your brand’s personality to the right colours. Matching a sunny, vibrant colour such as yellow or orange may work for a business such as a cafe or a clothing store that wishes to convey a lively, happy and sunny personality. However, this may be inappropriate for an insurance agency wishing to highlight a more stable, trustworthy and calm brand character.
Does your colour scheme match your brand’s goals and ethos?
If you wish to stress your company’s environmental credentials, it would be sensible to choose a green or brown colour scheme. Both signal a connection with the earth and the environment. Brands such as Greenpeace, Planet Ark, and The Body Shop are good examples of brands that highlight their environmentally-friendly goals through colour.
While choosing the right colour scheme is important for effective branding, it is essential to note that cultural differences, fashion ideals, and personal preferences may evoke a different response. One example of cultural differences to colour is the colour white. Signifying purity and cleanliness in the Western world, white is the colour of mourning in many Asian cultures and may have a completely different psychological response.
However, by carefully matching colours to the audience demographic, brand personality and company ethos, you help make your brand stand out and appeal to your targeted market.