29 Mar COLOURS AND BRANDING
One of the most critical issues related to branding is colour perception, the area where many designers run into problems. There have been multiple attempts from different psychologists to classify consumer behaviour in response to different individual colours. However, the truth is that colours are mostly dependent on personal experiences. Hence, are very critical to be universally translated to specific feelings. However, broader messaging patterns may be classified to relate with general attributes of emotions with colours.
In a study named, “Impact of colour on marketing,” researchers found that more than 85% of the image judgments made about products can be based on colour alone, depending on the product.
Regarding the role colour in branding, results from the study further shows that; “The relationship between brands and colour hinges on the perceived appropriateness of the colour being used for the particular brand”. That means the colour may have to fit with the product being sold.
Another study named “Exciting red and competent blue” also confirms that the purchasing intent is significantly affected by colours because of their effect on brand perception in customer’s mind.
Additional studies have revealed that colours greatly influence how customers view the “personality” of a brand because our brains prefer immediately recognisable brands, which makes colour an essential element when creating a brand’s identity. Experts suggest; it’s necessary for new brands to pick colours that ensure differentiation from competitors in the market, for positioning it against a direct competitor – using right shade may help them achieve that goal.
When it comes to selecting the “right” colour for a brand, predicting consumer reaction to specific colour appropriateness is far more essential than the individual colour itself. Psychologist and Stanford professor Jennifer Aaker has conducted multiple studies on colour psychology, and her paper named “Dimensions of Brand Personality” points out five core dimensions that play an essential role in a brand’s personality considering colours.
A single Brand may sometimes cross between two traits but mostly dominated by one. While certain colours broadly align with specific characteristics as mentioned in the image above, brown for ruggedness, purple for sophistication, and red for excitement.
Nearly in every published academic study on colours and branding may elaborate that it’s far more critical for colours to support a specific personality to portray instead of trying to align with stereotypical associations.
Consider the inaccuracy of making broad statements such as “green means calm and red means excitement”, sometimes green is used to brand environmental issues, but on the other hand, it’s meant to brand commercial spaces, such as Mint and Starbucks. While Brown may be useful for a rugged appeal such as Saddleback Leather, when positioned in another context, brown can be used to create a warm feeling of Thanksgiving or in an appealing chocolate commercial.
Hence, there are no clear guidelines for choosing a brand’s colours. “It depends”. However, the context may be an essential consideration. It’s the feeling, mood, and image that a brand or product creates that matters.