Choosing the best brand colors for your business is no easy task. It might be tempting to choose your favorite colors and move on. But don’t! At least not until you’ve answered the following three questions.
You’re trying to attract a specific group of people and different audiences prefer different colors, so choose colors based on the gender, age, culture, and the accessibility of who you want to reach.
A survey posted on joehallock.com shows the color blue is a strong favorite among both men and women, but 57 percent of men prefer it to just 35 percent of women. Purple and green follow closely as the most favorable colors among gender. But there are many other factors to consider.
Color preferences differ by age groups and can change throughout life. The color yellow is widely preferred among children, but drops in popularity as they become adults. Color Psychology and Color Therapy says, “With maturity comes a greater liking for hues of shorter wave length (blue, green, purple) than for hues of longer wave length (red, orange, and yellow).” The color blue, however, remains a crowd favorite among all ages.
Here’s something that might blow your mind—different cultures perceive color differently. This article in Inc says, “In Liberia, the Bassa people perceive only two colors: a combination of red, yellow, and orange grouped under the single word ziza, and a purple-green-blue combination called hui. Similarly, the Shona of Zimbabwe have just four different color words, grouped together in distinct ways.”
If that last bit of information didn’t wow you, consider this—300 million people around the world have color blindness. While people with color blinded can see items clearly, they may be unable to fully perceive red, green, or blue light, and in rare cases only see in black, white, and greyscale. This can mean if your branding includes text over highly colored or gradient background, your colorblind audience may miss your message all together!
Bottom line: If your brand colors don’t connect with your audience, they may not give you a second look. And in the most extreme cases of cultural color perception and color blindness, they may not even see your message.
Most experts agree that 70 to 93 percent of all communication is nonverbal, which means colors play a big role communicating your business’s personality to your potential customers. To make sure you’re communicating the right message, try this fun branding exercise:
Ask yourself If my brand was a person, what three words describe its personality? Once you have your three words, take a look at the chart below to see which colors might be right for you.
Bottom Line: Most of our communication is nonverbal. Getting the visual elements of your brand right is crucial and your brand colors play a big role in sending a purposeful message.
When choosing your brand colors, think how do I want my customers to feel when they see my brand? What colors represent an important aspect of my product or service? Getting this right is key to tapping into the emotional needs of your audience, which are a driving force in helping them make a purchasing decision.
For example, if you run an organic skin care line for women, you may want to choose colors that represent health, beauty, and nature. So a palette of greens, yellows, and beige neutrals might work best to make customers feel like your products are clean, light, and from nature. Aveda and Aveeno nail this vibe.
If you’re looking to create a high-end, luxurious, and exclusive impact, choosing a monochromatic palette of black, white, and silver can really hit the mark. I mean, you know about Chanel, Gucci, and Prada, right?
Bottom Line: Colors have an impact on our emotions. And emotions have an impact on our buying decisions.
Brand colors are just one of six important element for creating a unique and purposeful brand identity, which you can read more about here.
If you’re ready for some help choosing the best brand colors for your business, I’ve got you covered!