Do you need inspiration to create a colour scheme for your brand?

It can be quite daunting knowing where to begin if you don’t have a background in design. What the best colours to choose? Why does Facebook use blue, Amazon orange? 

Colours definitely say something about the brand and there is a fair amount of research that has gone into the psychology of colour in business. 

The first thing to understand is that a person’s response to colour can be very subjective, (based on everything from personal experience to cultural background).

In reality, people will make decisions about your content in less than 90 seconds. And when you take into account that between 62% and 90% of that decision is based on colour alone, you can see why it’s important to have some understanding of how colours might be influencing the perception of your brand.

Different colours trigger different responses in the brain, and can be both positive and negative, depending on context, and the reader’s expectation of your product or service. Here are some of the most common associations that the brain makes with different colours.

Red

The colour red has been shown to stimulate the nervous system. We have a physical reaction to this colour. Our brains see it as being closer than it is, which means it grabs our attention first. It is seen as a powerful and dynamic colour. And in the right context, it can portray friendliness and strength.

This comes with a word of warning – red can also be viewed as demanding and aggressive. Use it sparingly for best results.

Yellow

Yellow has a really interesting effect on the brain. It has the strongest psychological effect of all colours, and is the first colour babies respond to. It’s linked to joy, optimism, inspiration, confidence and fun.

Be careful with yellow, though. Use too much of it, use it out of context, or use the wrong tone, and it can trigger negative emotions like fear and anxiety. Yellow is a great colour to use in the right context, when your message is happy and fun. But don’t overuse it if you don’t want to stress your audience.

Orange

Orange combines the energy of red with the friendliness of yellow to create a sense of fun and freedom. It creates an impression of positivity, and can be used to motivate. It’s often used for food related marketing, as it’s known to stimulate the appetite.

Overdoing it on the orange can suggest frivolity or a lack of sophistication, so make sure you don’t undermine your own brand by making it too orange!

Blue

Blue is seen as the colour of intelligence, dependability and responsibility. Where red affects us physically, blue has a measurable impact on our mental state. Strong blues stimulate our thought processes, while softer blues calm us and help us to concentrate.

Bear in mind that blue can sometimes be perceived as distant or cold. So if you want to create a sense of being both trustworthy and friendly, you may need to combine it with another colour.

Green

Green represents balance and harmony. It balances emotion with logic in the brain. It is often associated with the idea of growth, and reassures us on a primitive level.

Green is also seen as the colour most closely related to money, so in the wrong context, it can be viewed as overly materialistic.

Purple

Purple combines red’s power with the stability of blue. It is the colour of spirituality and imagination. Purple is often associated with luxury and quality, bringing to mind thoughts of royalty.

Its ability to spark creative thinking can also cause distraction, as thoughts begin to wonder.

Black

Black is serious. Black is sophisticated. Black portrays control and reservation.

Too much black can cause negativity, so use it sparingly for impact.

White

White represents purity and peace. It is associated with simplicity and clarity, and a good use of whitespace can really help to draw attention to important content.

With this is mind, once you have chosen your primary brand colour, you will want complimentary colours to work with too. We recommend a free tool at that will help you visually choose you complimentary colours.
 

 

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