Have you ever thought how the colour psychology in branding may influence the feelings of others? It’s a known fact that colour can impact on a customer’s buying decision. And depending on the colour you use for your business, it can define your perceived value and meaning to others. For example, a hot red is passionate and can grab your attention. Whereas a cool blue is more soothing and is one of the most popular colours for businesses to use in their branding.
Let’s dive in deeper to understand what these colours mean and how they can be used.
The colour Red
RED is a physical colour and it evokes warmth, passion and excitement. But it can also mean aggression or a warning.
It has the effect of grabbing your attention, so it’s used a lot on warning signs, sale signs and traffic lights.
On a psychological level, it reminds us of blood. So there may be a ‘flight or fight’ reaction it for some people.
In China, the colour red is seen as lucky. And in some eastern cultures, brides wear red on their wedding day. But in South Africa, they wear red to mourn the dead.
In design, a bright red can be a powerful colour and can be used to accent and highlight. It’s a colour to use if you want to stand out.
Darker reds are more luxurious and you’ll see it used on expensive chairs, painted walls and linings for cases or jewellery.
Some big brands use red very successfully but it’s not for everyone. If nothing more, it shows you are passionate about what you do and you and your business (or product) like to turn heads.
In business, I would suggest you could use red for a cybersecurity business or burglar alarm company. Or maybe a dating business or supermarket.
Brands use RED to stand out and provoke a reaction. Examples include Coca Cola, Tesco, Netflix, Nintendo, The Sun/Mirror (newspapers), KFC, Virgin, Texaco and many more.
The colour Orange
If you use ORANGE for your brand colour, here are some colour insights.
Let’s see if you made the right decision… Orange is vibrant. It’s hot, healthy, fruity and engaging.
It also symbolizes energy, vitality, cheer, excitement, adventure, warmth, and good health. So orange could be a great colour to use if you have a business in the health and wellness industries.
Globally it evokes the taste of healthy fruits, bursting with juice. It’s also symbolic of autumn.
Children all over the world are drawn to orange which maybe due to it’s resemblance to the sun.
Because orange stands out so well, is used extensively for life rafts, hazard cones, and high visibility police vests. With these products in mind, If you run a health and safety company, orange would be a good colour to use.
Brands using orange: Sainbury’s, Penguin Books, Harley Davidson, Fanta, Nickelodeon, Etsy, and many supermarket products
The colour Yellow
YELLOW is an energising colour. It reminds us of the sun, happiness, loyalty, gold and custard (Yum!).
So it is a great colour to use for lifting your emotional state. Though It can also signify cowardice and betrayal. Boo!
In Iran, it symbolises sickness and ill health. In some Asian countries, it signifies glory, wisdom and happiness.
Yellow stands out from a distance, so is used extensively in road maintenance for machinery and clothing. In some countries, it is used for Taxis and school buses.
In nature, it is used as a warning such as on wasps, tigers, poisonous frogs and leopards.
Many products use yellow to stand out on supermarket shelves. Although it is usually associated with bargain brands rather than premium products.
But if it’s tweaked to look more like gold, then that association is suddenly turned upside down.
In business, you could use yellow for a children’s’ product, a health-based business or if in the gold spectrum it could be used a premium service or product.
Examples of brands using yellow are McDonald’s, Ikea, Best Buy, Subway, Shell, Batman and Cat.
The colour Green
GREEN is the colour associated with nature, balance, stability, health, freshness, peace and growth. It can also be a sign of jealousy and envy.
Lighter, brighter greens are more vibrant and are sometimes used for health-based businesses and products.
Darker greens evoke affluence so you’ll see this colour used on banknotes and banks.
In the Bible the colour green represents immortality. It also represents resurrection and is clearly seen during Spring.
Green can sometimes be used as a visual representation of feeling unwell. Although this is generally used in comic books and illustrations.
Examples of brands using green are Starbucks, BP, Holiday Inn, Carlsberg, More Than, Ocado, Garnier and Xbox.