The psychology and meaning of color in branding and web design
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Color spectrum

One of the most interesting and controversial topics in branding and marketing is the psychology of color. Researchers found that, depending on the product, up to 90% of snap judgments made about products can be based on color alone. Customer choices are greatly affected by the perception of the brand, which in turn is determined by the attributes the viewers associate with the colors used in the logo. Choosing the right colors is very important when creating a brand identity, and predicting consumer reaction to color appropriateness is far more important than the individual color itself, according to the research. Color decisions can influence both direct messages and secondary brand values and attributes in any communication. Color should be carefully selected to align with the key message and emotions being conveyed in a piece.

Let’s look at some of the most common color choices and what they imply.

Color psychology and meaning

Red

This vivid color is most often associated with love, passion, determination and risk. It’s dynamic and energetic, and should be your go-to color if you want to get people’s attention. Fun fact – it is known to boost appetite, and that’s why so many fast food restaurants use it in their branding.

Yellow

Perceived as the most optimistic color, it’s all about the merriness and warmth. It boosts mental activity, makes us cheerful, and generates muscle growth. Although, be careful not to overuse it – babies tend to cry in rooms colored in yellow; too little yellow causes negative feelings of insecurity, fear, isolation, and low self-esteem.

Blue

Usually conveys the message of peace, freedom, intuition and imagination. It has a soothing effect, inspires us to be loyal, to be sincere, to be confident, and to be intelligent. That’s why it’s a highly corporate color. It slows down human metabolism. It’s the rarest occurring pigment in nature (it is a component wavelength of white light though, and also appears from diffraction from a variety of sources i.e: the blue sky).

Green

In turn, green is the most common color encountered in nature. A symbol of life, new beginnings, safety, fertility and environment, it’s also widely associated with money, banking, ambition, and wealth. It has healing effects to us, both physically and emotionally, and is known to have a soothing effect to human vision.

Purple

A very rare shade to encounter in nature, and it’s perceived as sacred, delicate, and precious. Symbol of spirituality, passion, vitality, and higher self, as well as power, nobility, luxury, and ambition. It can show elegance and glam, and is associated with creativity and imagination.

Black

Black is the absence of colors. Represents strength, authority, sophistication, and elegance. In many cultures also associated with death, evil, and aggression. It is a prestige corporate color due to it’s simplicity and versatility.

Brown

Represents trust, reliability and unity, and it relates back to nature as an element of the earth palettes. It’s one of the most disliked colors among humans, although has some aficionados and works well with some brands – think UPS.

White

White can symbolize guidance, innocence, purity, beginnings, cleanliness, coolness and simplicity; therefore, color white aids mental clarity, assists in cleanliness, and promotes thought and purifications.

Orange

Associated with creativity and joy, and is often related to autumn and harvest. It encourages emotional energies of compassion, warmth, and passion, happiness, and understanding. Orange has been found to stimulate hunger.

Pink

Conveys the message of sincerity, and is often considered feminine. That wasn’t always the case, back before mid-50s it used to be the color reserved for boys. We owe that cultural change to First Lady Eisenhower.

Finding your own palette

You should always consider how will the color resonate among your audience when interacting with your brand. Do the colors of your brand help you convey the message you want to communicate to your audience? Do they ‘fit’ your product well? At Techleus, we can help you refine your brand and reach your customers – contact us today if you’re interested in collaboration!

AUTHOR: Liliana Gawrys

Lila Gawrys is a web designer and branding passionate with several years experience in web and graphic design industry. Currently works at Techleus and helps businesses to establish their brand and online presence. Privately loves dogs, ramen and black clothes.

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