The facts about color psychology are well documented, and how various colors can have an effect on human mood and behavior. Colors can even affect taste and appetite, which is why many restaurants use stimulating colors like red, orange, and yellow in their brand logos.
Being aware of how color psychology works is highly useful during the design stages. The perception of color can change as we grow older, so it’s important to know who your target audience is. Colors can evoke emotions – for example, blue logos create a sense of trust and reliability, while yellow is associated with optimism and cheerfulness.
Because there’s so many shades of each color, the shades themselves can evoke different reactions than the basic color. For that reason, when your logo is printed on business cards and similar, it’s important to use high-quality and durable inks that can achieve a consistent look. Many knock-off products are easy to spot because of slight variations in color shade, which result when the knock-offs are reproduced at a factory that doesn’t use the same printers and inks. For the best quality colors, you should seek out an industrial grade ink manufacturer.
The colors and their psychological effects
Let’s look at the various psychological effects each color may evoke, and companies that rely on those colors in their logo:
- Blue – Blue creates a sense of trust, and is the most popular color in the world. Blue is heavily used by companies like Facebook, Wal Mart, VISA, Ford, and others.
- Red – A powerful color that stimulates and boldly attracts attention. It is the choice of companies that want to give a youthful, bold, and passionate brand persona. It is used by companies like Nintendo, ESPN, Netflix, and Marlboro.
- Green – For obvious reasons, green is very much favored by brands that are eco-friendly. It is a color of tranquility and growth, and green is perceived to increase productivity. It is used in logos by Starbucks, John Deere, Android, and Acer.
- Yellow – A cheery, vibrant color, used by brands that want to convey a sense of warmth and customer service. Yellow is also a color that grabs attention of window shoppers. It is used by companies like Best Buy, IKEA, DHL, and UPS.
- Purple – Known as a royal color, it evokes a sense of exclusivity, luxury, but also imagination and creativity. It’s used by companies like Hallmark, Yahoo!, Lifetime, and Cadbury.
- Pink – Many brands that use pink logos are marketed primarily towards a female audience, though there’s a wide range of pink shades that carry different meanings. Lighter pinks are seen as more romantic, while warm pinks like fuschia encourage confidence. Brands that use pink include Cosmopolitan, Johnson & Johnson, Barbie, and Baskin Robbins.
- Orange – A cheery, friendly color, it can be used for effectively targeting children. Orange is an energetic color that encourages excitement and enthusiasm. It’s used by companies like Nickelodeon, Fanta, Crush Soda, and JBL.
- White – White is often associated with purity and cleanliness, as well as minimalism in design. In many cases white is paired with a different background color, though traditional white-and-black is quite elegant. It’s been successfully used by companies like Apple, Wikipedia, and Adidas.
Choosing your brand colors
First you should take into consideration your consumer audience, their lifestyle, and cultural trends. If you’re targeting an eco-friendly consumer base, then of course your colors should include earthy greens. Consider the age and gender as well.
Both men and women respond favorably to blue equally, but women respond to purple as the 3rd favourite color, whereas with men it’s red.
Also be aware of the cultural perceptions of color. While white can be associated with minimalism and purity in the west, some regions of Asia consider white the color of mourning.