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The Psychology of Color

Color is a language. Know what your brand is saying.

by Angela Michael — Posted on December 21st, 2016

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The material world we live in also happens to be very visual, but can you really manipulate people into buying your product or service with a simple color choice? We admit that research might actually suggest you can, however, you’re only getting half of the story.

While an alarmingly large percentage of consumers have bought products based on their color alone, it wasn’t just the fact that the sunshiny yellow made them feel happy enough to part with their hard-earned cash. Color is entirely too dependent on an individual’s personality, experiences, culture and upbringing to be translated into universal feelings.

While color plays a substantial role in branding, it’s how that color impacts the consumer’s perception of the brand that matters. In simpler words, does the color "fit" with what you are trying to sell? Consider, for example, whether you would believe the Bentley brand was so luxurious if its colors were loud and outrageous.

So, how do you choose?

That depends on how you want your brand to be perceived – in other words, it’s “personality.”



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Research Reveals…


90-seconds

The speed at which someone forms an impression about your product/service.

62-90%

The amount of that impression that is based on color alone.

84.7%

The percentage of consumers who bought a product because of its color.

80%

The amount by which color can increase brand recognition.


Yellow

Who isn’t happy when the sun is shining? Use when you want to express optimism, cheerfulness and warmth. You can also use yellow when you want to express wealth and opulence.

Discreet products beware: Avoid this color unless you want to stand out and grab attention.

Orange

Looking to show your ruggedness, confidence or excitement? Orange will bring the attention you need to your brand. It can also be used to express friendliness and fun – for those brands with a youthful demographic.

Calming products look away: Orange can sometimes express caution or signify aggression.

Red

Are you innovative, daring or just plain tasty? Red represents a large variety of emotions, including spirited, imaginative, passionate and hunger.

Healthcare products think again: Red can increase heart rates and create a sense of urgency.

Purple

Do you consider yourself a step away from the ordinary? Purple conveys creativity and sparks the imagination.

Masculine products back off: Purple can also trend towards femininity and beauty.

Blue

Want to express your professionalism, reliability and durability. Blue has that down-to-earth, calming effect that exudes trust and capability.

Adventurous products tread carefully: The calming effects of this color are best left to others.

Green

Looking to promote a sustainable or health-conscious product or service? Green denotes nature and growth, which have a strong connection with staying healthy.

Look elsewhere if affordability is your key-driver: Green can also signify wealth and success – hello, money!

Gray

Are you looking to represent balance and minimalism? How about sophistication and credibility? Gray has the ability to play off the personality traits associated with both black and white.

Flashy products stand back: Gray will not help you stand out or make a statement.