The Psychology of Colour in Branding
Wednesday, 2018 September 5, 5:51
When you think of a brand that is well known you probably automatically think of their logo and the colours that they use. That’s not an accident. The most successful companies know how to use colour theory and good marketing to create an indelible image in a customer’s mind by using brand colours. Having brand colours for your business is just as important as having a logo. Those brand colours subconsciously send a message about your brand’s personality.
The Psychology of Colour in Branding
You may not have thought too much about colour and branding when you were starting your business. But now that you’re ready to take your branding to the next level and push forward to a new level of growth your brand colours are an important part of your future success. The right brand colour palette can make your business memorable to customers or forgettable depending on the brand colours that you choose. Colour and branding work together to create positive imagery that customers will respond to. When customers see the brand colours that represent your business they will think about your business so choosing the right colours is essential.
Your Brand Colour Palette
Ideally, you should choose three brand colours to be your brand colour palette. The first colour that you choose should be the main or primary colour. This is the colour that will be the most associated with your brand so if you want to have a bold colour represent you it should be your main or primary colour. This colour is often a bright colour or a vivid colour so that it will stand out from other colours.
The next colour you choose will be an accent colour. You can create accent colours yourself or let a professional designer create the colour for you. The accent colour should complement the primary colour and should be used to highlight part of your logo or another image that represents your business.
The third colour that your business needs are a neutral colour. This neutral colour will serve as the background for the other two colours. Many businesses choose white, off-white, or gray for the neutral colour. Tan and beige are also popular choices because they are easy to work into logos. But your neutral colour doesn’t have to be boring. Charcoal gray and black are great choices if you want to have an edgy colour as your neutral colour. Just be careful when you choose dark colours like black as your neutral colour because black can overpower other colours.
Your Business Personality And Your Brand Colours
When you’re choosing the colours that will make up your brand colour palette you should avoid choosing colours that are your personal favourites. Most people automatically think about their favourite colours when they think about brand colours but your favourite colour might not be the right fit to represent your brand.
Colours are very much tied to emotions and certain colours will always evoke certain emotions in your customers. The emotions and characteristics that are associated with colours will reflect on your brand so it’s very important to choose colours that are going to reflect the personality and message of your brand.
The Best Colours For Marketing
Choosing the best colour for branding your business is something that each business goes through. When you started the company you probably had an idea of your brand personality in mind. Successful colours will cement that brand persona in the minds of customers and make it so that customers automatically think of that brand image when they see those colours.
As an example of a very successful use of colours for branding think about Target. Target’s primary colour is red, which is youthful, edgy, and full of vibrant energy. That sends a strong message to customers that Target is a young, edgy, and modern place to shop. Target reinforces that idea by using red tops as part of their uniform. The uniform that Target employees wear includes a shirt in their primary colour of red and pants in their accent colour of khaki or beige.
When customers are shopping in a Target store they are building even stronger associations with the red, white and khaki colour pattern that Target is known for so that they will associate that pattern of colours with a fun, young, and edgy shopping experience.
Emotions And Colours For Branding
Here’s a quick look at some of the most commonly used colours for branding and what they signal to consumers who they see them:
• Red — passion, importance, attention
• Orange — playfulness, friendly, vitality
• Yellow — happiness, optimism, warning
• Green — nature, stability, prosperity (growth)
• Light Blue — tranquillity, trust, openness
• Dark Blue — professionalism, security, formality
• Purple — royalty, creativity, luxury
• Pink — femininity, youth, innocence
• Brown — rugged, earthy, old-fashioned
• White — clean, virtuous, healthy
• Gray — neutrality, gloom, subdued
• Black — powerful, sophisticated, edgy
You can use this chart to figure out the best colours for your brand or consult with branding agencies in Toronto to get professional advice on what colours best represent your brand. It’s a good idea to take the time to look over your business statement of purpose and other documents so that you have a clear idea of what your business personality is when you choose colours that will represent your brand. Think about not only where your business is at now but where you want it to be in the future and choose colours based on that. Always plan for the kind of growth that you want to achieve when you are working on branding your business.
The Best Logo Colour Combinations
There are several different ways that you can choose the best logo colour combination for your business. Looking at colours for branding is different than just picking out your favourite colours. Successful colours will build a powerful brand that you can be proud of.
In order to choose the best logo colour combinations for your business, you need to decide which types of colours that you want to use. There are three primary choices when it comes to choosing brand colours. You can choose colours that monochromatic, analogous, or complementary.
Monochromatic colours are many different colours that all are in the same colour family. So for example, if you were to choose three different shades of red or three different shades of green to represent your business that would be choosing a monochromatic colour. Even though the primary colour is green for all the colours choosing different shades of green means that they will all look good together.
Analogous colours are brand colours that are next to each other on the cool wheel. If you think that analogous colours are the best brand colours to represent your business pick a colour that you like on the colour wheel. Then choose one colour on each side of it. You can use those colours and be confident that they will go together and look harmonious.
Complementary colours are colours that are opposite of each other on the colour wheel. Even though these colours are opposites they still go together quite well and are a great way to get some contrast in your brand colour palette. To choose complementary colours on a colour wheel just pick a primary colour that you like and then choose a colour directly opposite the first colour on the colour wheel. When you line the two colours up together they should look like they go together pretty well.
The type of colour palette that you choose is really a matter of personal taste. Just make sure that the brand colours you choose are representative of your business and aren’t just the colours that you like the best. You are choosing colours that represent the business, not you personally.