The Psychology of Color in Marketing

The Psychology of Color in Marketing fI The Psychology of Color in Marketing

Other colors

Pink’s not a primary or secondary color, but it’s a tint of red that packs a very targeted branding wallop.

What it means. In Western culture, pink is tied to the concept of femininity. It’s typically used when a brand wants to show love, nurturing, or caring. According to fatrabbit, “bright and warm pinks, such as fuchsia or magenta are vibrant, youthful and encourage a sense of confidence … while calm pinks are friendly and represent the carefree days of childhood.”

Brands that use it. The Susan G. Komen Foundation uses pink (most famously in the pink ribbon) for breast cancer awareness campaigns.

Retailer Victoria’s Secret also uses this color; they even launched a specific brand titled “PINK.”

Black isn’t just for villains; it’s authority and power as well, and it can be shorthand for sophistication. Use it strategically and sparingly, as too much black can be negative and oppressive.

White projects clarity, cleanliness, innocence, purity, and freshness. White space is always a good thing; it opens an area up and adds breathing space to a crowded image. It’s also excellent for contrast. In fact, some of the most popular brands in the world (Google!) use white to create more space and stand out.

The World Wildlife Foundation black-and-white panda logo is an example of a very appropriate use of black.

Stark black and white motifs can be very compelling.

Tips for Using Color for Greater Results

Consider your target audience. The color guide above is a good place to start, but naturally, there are many different variables, including gender, that play an important role. For example, in general, women don’t like gray, orange, and brown and instead favor blue, purple, and green.

Men have much the same preferences, but prefer black to purple. Also, colors are not universal when it comes to geography. Read this Shutterstock blog post for a primer on how colors are used around the world.

Keep it simple. When using color to evoke emotion, keep it simple by using one prominent color and offsetting it with a neutral hue. Using fewer colors avoids evoking too many emotions at once.

Use contrast. Select dark colors and contrast them with light colors. Or select complementary colors, which are directly opposite each other on the color wheel; purple and yellow, for example.

Opt for bright colors for calls to action. Bright colors — red, green, orange, yellow — support higher conversion rates. It’s easy to take advantage of this tip, and it’s easy to test which one will give the best results.

Test, Measure, Adjust

Using color isn’t an exact science. The key is to test, measure and adjust your efforts. As you continue to do this, you’ll determine which colors translate to success and capture the most leads and results for your brand.

How do you use color in your marketing? Please share your experience and results.

Photo “Covers #PRINCE” by @DrGarcia used under a Creative Commons 2.0 license

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