According to the Journal of Management History, “people make up their minds within 90 seconds of their initial interactions with either people or products.” First impressions in marketing matter, and color choice plays a pivotal role in how a product is perceived. The study of color is called color theory.
5 Quick Facts about Color Theory
1. Color personalizes and persuades.
When it comes to branding, personalization is everything. You want your brand to fit both you and the product you’re selling, so in designing a logo it’s natural to choose your favorite symbols, styles, and colors. It’s important, however, to consider the psychology behind color theory, and to make sure your choices best convey the message you want to send the world.
Different colors have different subconscious associations for people. To determine the right color combination for your brand, first evaluate why people are buying your product. What is it they wish to feel? You can then use color accordingly to persuade them you’ll deliver.
2. Color speaks louder than you.
Peruse this chart of color associations, but don’t be surprised if it feels familiar. We regularly encounter some colors in standardized contexts, such as traffic signs. Even industrial designers use color theory in making their choices!
- Red: Attention; danger; excitement; heat; passion; love
- Orange: Warmth; friendliness; enthusiasm; creativity; stimulation
- Yellow: Energy; happiness; cheerfulness; intellect; spontaneity
- Green: Wealth; the environment; freshness; fertility
- Blue: Serenity; stability; coolness; confidence; trust
- Purple: Royalty; ambition; extravagance; magic
- Black: Solemnity; mystery; elegance; luxury
- White: Purity; light; perfection
Try it out! What do the rich, brown tones of the coffee beans on this Buena Vida page suggest to you as a consumer?
3. Color associations may vary.
Color theory is a theory because it will never be a proven fact consistent across cultures, genders, or individuals. Interestingly, we can say in broad terms that men prefer shades of color (hues to which black has been added, such as maroon, navy, or forest green), while women prefer tints (hues to which white has been added, such as brights, pastels, and neons). Know your demographics, and choose wisely!
4. Color theory applies to text, symbols, and images equally.
Not only does a uniform color palette create a visually appealing sense of continuity, it underscores a consistency of message and an unspoken reliability of product. Use a color sampling tool to match the hues in a given image or logo to your text, explicitly correlating the meme, the motto, and the overall message.
5. Complementary colors have higher conversion rates.
Complementary colors are those opposite each other on the artist’s color wheel: red and green, for example. Rather than canceling each other out, complementary colors enhance each other, bolstering both colors’ visibility and vibrancy.
In addition to considering the subconscious associations of color psychology, use your brand’s complementary color to create dynamism on the page while highlighting Calls to Action. Most importantly, the overall effect of complementary colors is memorability: they leave a lasting impression. “Recall and recognition … are among the most frequently employed traditional metrics to assess advertising effectiveness.”
Contact Craveity today to schedule a color analysis for your brand.