Many professions work with the meanings of colours. Artists, graphic designers, interior architects, fashion designers, therapists, among others, know the effects that colours can have on people. Colours are associated with feelings and emotions ranging from love to hate or from optimism to sadness. Also, colours and feelings are not accidentally related, i.e. their combination is not only related to taste, but they express universal experiences rooted in us since our childhood in our consciousness and language.
When it comes to marketing, it is important to use colours appropriately to save time and effort. In order to influence the user, it is important to study the use of colours, to know what each of them transmits and which is the right one for the emotion you want to generate. Choosing the colour of a brand is not based on personal taste. First you must know what you want to transmit with your brand, who your target audience is and how you want to reach them. It is important to define your visual identity and know your buyer persona to the millimeter. This will help build a brand identity that will make your product or service more attractive visually speaking. In the same way that we give opinions of people by the colours of clothes they wear, we do it of the brands that are on the market. It is often not a conscious opinion, but is generated in our subconscious through the colours that we perceive.
On the other hand, let's not forget the context, as it determines the effect that the colour can cause. The connection of meanings in which we perceive the colour will determine the effect that it produces in us. For example, the colour of a garment is valued differently from the colour of a room, a food or an artistic object. The context determines whether a certain colour is pleasant or not. We are surrounded by colours, that is, many colours intervene in our context and we know that they awaken different sensations or feelings depending on where we are. For example, it is not the same to enter a room with white wallpaper with pink flowers than one that has black walls. Both colours produce different effects on us, while white and pink invite us to rest and relax, black transmits darkness, mystery or death and who wants to sleep in a black room?
Meanings of colours in marketing
As we mentioned before, the meanings of colours in marketing create an emotional effect in our day to day life. Once we have defined our corporate branding with the colours of our brand, it will be easier to transmit the desired emotions or sensations to consumers.
It is also important to know the properties of colours in order to know the right amount of brightness, tone or saturation for our brand. For example, if we talk about primary colours, you should know that a very saturated blue will not generate the same feeling as a low saturated one. A very dark blue can be elegant, but a very light one is more associated with purity. Red itself can be love and hate or violence. Yellow can provoke joy and instability .
According to an article in Forbes Mexico magazine, consumers not only attribute personality traits to products and services, but associate certain personality factors with specific colours. Also, the meanings of colours in marketing vary by culture, as the effect of colour will depend on the consumer's life cycle and the market niche they are in.
Here are some of the meanings of colours in marketing and what some of their combinations produce:
Green is a calming colour together with blue and white. With blue and yellow the idea of hope. With red the idea of healthy and with violet the idea of poisonous. It can also mean growth and renewal. It is used in sectors related to health or nature. Some examples are Animal Planet, Tropicana, Spotify, etc.
Together with gold and blue it gives the idea of the noble and ideal. It is the colour of perfection, honesty, purity and truth. It also represents sophistication. The health sector is also associated with this colour, as it generates the idea of hygiene. Some examples are Apple, Rexona, Boss, Swarovsky, etc.
This colour communicates power, luxury, elegance and seriousness. However, it can also be negative, conveying evil, death and mourning in the western world. It is also the colour of denial, dirty and evil. As for the meanings of colours in marketing, companies use it to send a message of exclusivity, high quality and to add a touch of mystery. Zara is a brand that uses this colour in its logo to convey elegance.
The colour of the feminine, of women, of innocence, childhood and romanticism. This colour provokes relaxation, friendly moods. Brands that try to generate confidence and calmness use pink. However, in darker tones it transmits elegance and freshness. Some brands with this colour are Barbie, Hello Kitty, Victoria's Secret, etc.
This colour conveys power, nobility, luxury, wisdom, creativity, dignity, etc. In marketing, it can be associated with the female public or with services related to science fiction, magic and mystery. Some brands with violet logos are Milka, Syfy, Hallmark or Avon.
This colour is associated with enthusiasm, happiness, attraction or determination. However, it is not as attractive as red. It is an exotic, aromatic and tasty colour. Some brands that use it are Fanta, Nickelodeon, McDonald's, Crush or Gatorade.
It is the colour of the ground, of all earthly things and gives an organic sensation. It is also used in spaces or productions linked to the rustic. It is the colour of already cooked, toasted or aromatic food. It is important to know the context in which we are going to use this colour, as it can also give the idea of dirt, excrement or the common. Some brands that use it are Nescafe, Hershey's, Chocapic, etc.
Colours are a vehicle of emotions and sensations that lead us to act in one way or another. This aspect is decisive in marketing, as the good use of colours can result in the purchase of a product or the acquisition of a service. It is important to take into account the culture to use a colour, as its meaning can vary. The psychology of colour is applied in branding, products, emails, brochures, cards, points of sale, etc. That is, your entire brand must convey the same message and emotion through all its channels. This in order not to confuse the consumer by generating contradictory emotions. Therefore, it is important that the brand identity is defined and represented in the branding of your entire company.
And you, do you already know what is the ideal colour for your brand?