Atwill Media
The Psychology of Colors in Business

The Psychology of Colors in Business

Many of the most popular brands around the world can be easily identified by one defining characteristic: color.

Color brings about strong feeling and emotion, just by the shade or hue that is used, and a lot of the biggest brands know this fact. Studies have even been conducted on colors, that show they convey different emotions.

Check out some of these most commonly used colors, and examples of the businesses that use them in their branding.

Red:

Meaning -- Passion, energy, power

Who uses it -- Huge businesses that have been around for ages -- such as Coca Cola, The Virgin Group, and Nintendo -- use red to establish their dominance at the top of their markets. But by using red, they also show their customers that they have great passion in what they do.

Orange:

Meaning -- fun, youthful, optimistic, comfortable

Who uses it -- One of the biggest children's entertainment brands in the world is the Nickelodeon network. Using orange makes them instantly recognizable to kids as the place to watch their favorite cartoons and fun TV shows.

Yellow:

Meaning -- Friendliness, happiness

Who uses it -- When thinking about brands that use yellow in their branding, one of the first things that come to mind is McDonald's. Their golden arches, which can also be interpreted as a friendly and inviting smile, has been a place for people to experience a friendly environment for years. It's no wonder they call their kid's meals Happy Meals.

Green:

Meaning -- youthfulness, nature, growth

Who uses it -- Brands that want to attract the younger crowd -- one that's looking for natural, organic, environmentally conscious companies -- usually incorporate green into their branding. Starbucks, Whole Foods and Fresh Market use green to show their commitment to freshness, while brands like John Deere use it to invoke a feeling of growth and nature.

Blue:

Meaning -- calmness, logic, trust, communication

Who uses it -- Many of the most popular social media sites -- such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn -- use blue as a way to invoke trust and communication in user's minds. While many tech companies -- like Intel, Dell, and Skype -- use it to show off their logical, progressive company goals.

Purple:

Meaning -- luxurious, royalty, leadership

Who uses it -- Lots of candy companies, such as Cadbury and Wonka, use purple to entice people to divulge in their decadent products. Others, like FedEx and Yahoo, use it to convince customers of their leadership abilities.

Pink:

Meaning -- feminine, loving, nurturing

Who uses it -- Pink is often used in branding when trying to appeal to female customers, such as in Cosmopolitan, Victoria's Secret and Barbie, but it can also be used to showcase a brand's loving and nurturing nature. Charities, like Susan G. Komen, use pink for their Breast Cancer Awareness month activities, which definitely invokes a loving feeling to those affected by cancer.

Colors can be much more than simple cosmetic choices; they can also give customers a subliminal idea about your company, before they even walk into your store. Think carefully about colors before branding your business!


Contributor Caleb Hennington

Contributor Caleb Hennington

Contributor Caleb Hennington is a 23-year-old writer, who manages the Atwill Media and FGmarket blogs. He graduated from Arkansas State University in 2014 with a bachelor's degree in journalism.

When not writing, Caleb enjoys camping, running, collecting comic books, and binge-watching shows on Netflix.

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