Why Color Matters in Branding.

Heather Border

Why does it sometimes seem like every logo is blue? It’s a popular color, this is true- but there has to be something about blue that makes everyone like it, right? Well, turns out- there is.

Before we dive into the secrets behind colors, lets see if you can recognize these very popular brands just by their colors. (The answers will be revealed shortly.)

It’s a great start to our discussion about color and how it relates to your brand.

I’m sure you were able to identify at least one brand in the above list just by the colors. That should show you the powerful role color plays in identifying your favorite brands.

Color plays an important role in expressing your brand – an emotional connection you want to make with internal and external audiences.   It conveys a feeling and mood that helps to reinforce how people perceive your brand. Keep this in mind, as it’s important when talking about color and your brand.

So, which colors mean what?

We know from color theory and psychology that colors trigger different emotions. Finding the right color palette for your brand is a great way to further reinforce the emotional connection you’re trying to create with your target audience.

Lets start by explaining the colors you saw above and what emotions they convey.

Green:  growth and vitality, renewal and restoration, self-reliance, reliability and dependability, being tactful, emotionally balanced and calm, nature lover and family oriented, practical and down to earth, sympathetic, compassionate and nurturing, generous, kind and loyal with a high moral sense, adaptable, encourages ‘social joining’ of clubs and other groups, a need to belong.

Red:  action, energy and speed, attention-getting, assertive and confident, energizing, stimulating, exciting, powerful, passionate, stimulating and driven, courageous and strong, spontaneous and determined.

Blue: loyalty, trust and integrity, tactful, reliability and responsibility, conservatism and perseverance, caring and concern, idealistic and orderly, authority, devotion and contemplation, peaceful and calm.

Grey: reliable, conservative, dignified, neutral, impartial, professional, mature, intelligent, classic, solid, stable, calming, subdued, reserved, elegant, formal and dependable

Okay so now’s probably a good time to fill you in on the answers. The brands you saw above are in this order: Starbucks, Walmart, Coca-Cola and Southwest.

Now, you should have had that “ah-ha!” moment — connecting the above colors with the descriptions of the emotions each color conveys. This is why it’s so important to leverage the right colors when creating logos and introducing brands visually to external audiences.

Never underestimate the importance of a color choice and what it communicates about your company. The wrong color choice can be damaging to your brand if it contradicts your brand values and the right color choice can provide a powerful way to connect with your target audience.

So, the next time your designer creates a logo, ask yourself:  “Do these colors represent the emotional connection we want to create with our target audience?” You’ll benefit from putting a little more thought into choosing the appropriate colors for your brand.