Why Color Is an Integral Part of Business Branding

Let’s begin with a simple test: Think about the color green for a moment- then a brand you associate it with- pause before proceeding- Is it Starbucks you’re thinking of? You might have thought of other brands, but one thing is certain, you almost instantly identified the color with a certain brand.

A conclusive link between brands and colors certainly exists. As a part of a brand’s visual identity, color is the first thing people notice, a recent study even found that up to 90% of initial judgments about a brand or product are made based on color alone. From stimulating emotions to conveying your branding message, it is important that you consider the significant role color plays within your branding.

1. Attention

Color is the first thing people notice. As mentioned at the beginning of this article, a recent study found that up to 90% of initial judgments about a brand or product are made based on color alone, while another market research indicates that 80% of all the visual information the human brain takes is related to color. It is therefore crucial for your brand to pick the right color selection as it can either attract or dismiss your potential customers’ attention. First impressions last we say, and so for your brand to make a positive lasting impression, it needs to be exceptional — to be memorable, and ultimately become iconic. How? By choosing the right colors.

2. Emotion

Humans tend to associate certain colors with certain emotions. Therefore, color has a significant impact on consumer emotion as research shows. Mobilizing the human tendency of color-emotion association with your visual branding can help your brand evoke emotions in potential customers, such as trust, encouraging them to cultivate an interest in your brand. Think about the message you want your brand to convey. Is its trustworthiness? Enthusiasm? Healthy lifestyle? Whatever it is, determining your branding message is the first step towards selecting the right and effective color that will represent your message and the emotion you intend to evoke from potential customers. Consulting color psychology guides would help you in your selection.

3. Message

Color conveys your message and values to your target market. It is important to note that each market segment may respond to each color differently. Individual experiences, origin, culture, and context, can shape the message attached to a certain color. As an example, while Western culture views red as a symbol of love and passion, African culture regards red as a symbol of death and grief. In addition, climate also affects people’s responses to certain colors. For instance, people in tropical countries tend to patronize warm colors, while people in cooler climates respond more favorably to cooler colors. Keep in mind the demography of your target market, and from there choose the right color corresponding with your brand’s message.

4. Audience Recognition

Color is linked to memory and recognition. As numerous studies have established, human beings are “visual creatures”. Therefore, it is often far easier for us to recall visuals such as color rather than a name, especially if it has only been seen once. At the beginning of your brand, barely anyone knows it by its name. The color would then be a critical aspect of your branding as it is the aspect that would be easily retained and recognized by potential clients. Over time, the color or colors you choose for your branding will embed themselves in the minds of your consumers, making it synonymous with your brand. Often, established brands use the same colors on everything, including their uniforms, advertisement, packaging, and other business aspects. Your goal should be for the target audience to think of your brand when they see the shade of color you use for your branding.

Perfect Color Palette Doesn’t Exist – But the Appropriate One Does
As with anything, it is impossible to amuse everyone with your brand’s color selection. After all, we established that “individual experiences, origin, culture, and context, can shape” different responses towards the same color. It is unreasonable to go for the “universally acclaimed perfect color” for there is no such thing. However, there is an “inappropriate” and “appropriate” color palette- and either can positively or negatively affect your brand. So take your time and invest wisely in your color-branding, you can consult professionals such as graphic designers that have an in-depth knowledge regarding color theory and psychology, or you could simply gain knowledge yourself through traditional and online resources tackling these topics. No matter which approach you choose, always remember that color matters. However, keep in mind that although color matters, it is not the only thing that matters. Along with the appropriate color-palette, ensure data-driven branding that touches the hearts, minds, and discernment of your target market.

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