Starting a business or planning to start a business based on thoughts of what success would taste like is the wrong approach.
When starting a business, instead of thinking about how to spend the money, the business owner has to first think about what they would supply, how the brand should look, and how the brand should make people feel.
Color is known to be the biggest motivator when it comes to choosing a particular product and visual appearance is one of the main persuasive marketing factors.
While there are intelligent buyers that buy a product or avail a service based on research, not a lot of people go to the extensive depths to really find out more about the company itself.
Although people are encouraged to go beyond the covers and really dive deep into something when purchasing it, this is not always the case.
Sometimes, people don’t have the time to do all the extensive research.
Sometimes, due to the competition around, people usually settle for what is most visually pleasing.
Picking out brand colors is very important as they not only represent the brand but also attract the target market.
Once a brand is able to pick out the perfect colors to represent their brand, the effectiveness of their brand increases.
With better colors, a brand will have better representation and thus get a better place in the market.
In some instances, brands are overlooked due to them not picking out the right colors.
Finding the right colors to represent the brand is something that brand owners should really sit down and think about.
Why is color branding so important?
Aside from representing the brand itself and adding flavor to its visuals, color branding also makes sure that the target market knows that the brand is in a specific industry.
For example, when it comes to logistics, brands might not want to use something too bright or something too flashy.
For sanitation or hygiene brands, using a color that misrepresents them might have a negative result on the brand’s market.
Surprises are good but confusion is never good.
It is okay to be surprising but it is important to never confuse the market to the point that they are no longer sure if your brand is in the industry that it should be.
Why colors are important for the consumer
Green represents nature, blue represents either clean or corporate.
Naturally, consumers already have an innate perception when it comes to colors.
Picking the right colors that make the consumers feel the right things towards the brand is very important and is actually a technique of some of the biggest companies in the industry.
Aside from catching attention, a brand needs to be able to draw the consumer to make a purchase.
A well known brand that doesn’t sell isn’t a brand that’s doing well.
With the use of the right colors a company will be able to invoke the feeling of trust, romance, strength, hunger, and more.
While color branding might seem like a small segment in the whole marketing scheme, it is nonetheless very important and can be considered a fundamental element of marketing.
Picking the right colors really depends on what the brand stands for, what the brand is trying to portray, and what the target market might be attracted to.
Examples of proper color branding
Shell is a company that is known for speed.
While red signifies strength, yellow can sometimes be used to signify light or speed.
When picking out racing colors, red and yellow together, just like black and white, contrast and show a fast image.
Black and white, however, don’t really attract the consumer to make a purchase like red and yellow does.
Nowadays, Shell is trying to represent more than just speed but also reliability.
The benefit of their color choice is that aside from speed, the red still fits perfectly into what the company is trying to show its target market.
Despite trying to expand its target market, Shell is doing pretty well in using its color branding to its advantage.
There has been a lot of research put into understanding color theory.
Going deeper into the color theory will take forever and for those learning the color theory for branding, it is important to understand at least the essentials.
Here are a few basic colors you might want to use for color branding:
Often associated with danger, excitement, and energy. Red is also a color that can also portray passion and love.
Pink is generally a feminine color with a romantic and sentimental touch. There are different shades of pink that go from fierce to youthful.
This color is full of vitality and is also associated with cost-efficiency. The color also plays around being creative and adventurous.
The ultimate color of optimism. This color is often associated with being happy, playful, and also family-friendly.
When people look at green, it oftentimes demonstrates sustainability. It can also be aligned with wealth and prestigiousness.
The reason why this is a favorite corporate color is because blue represents trust and reliability. It is also a color used to portray a calm demeanor.
Majestic and royal. Purple is also associated with luxury, spirituality, and being mysterious.
This humble and down to earth color is also used to represent things closely related to nature like woodwork, organic products, and even foundations.
This color mostly represents purity and is also used to portray simplicity and innocence. It is also used to give a minimalistic feel.
Prim and proper? Formal? This color is used to display both elegance and sophistication. It is also oftentimes used in luxury but it can also represent sorrow.
The blend of different colors together shows the spirit and diversity.
Multi Colors are also used to show a creative and playful approach.
This is just the tip of the iceberg as different colors represent different things.
It is also important not to look too far and settle with a color that really speaks about the company while remaining attractive to the target market.
How to identify the perfect colors for your brand?
In order to build a brand that captures the essentials of your company, it is first important to understand the company you aim to build.
Before even considering certain colors for the brand, it is very important to detail what type of brand you plan to build in the first place.
Aside from the perfect image or logo, it is also important to choose the perfect color to represent the brand.
Honesty goes a long way and instead of pretending to be another brand, it is very important to create a brand that resonates well with the business it represents and the target market it aims to tap into.
Here are the steps to find the perfect color branding for your brand:
- Brand goal
What is the business provide? Are you in the financial field? A corporate field? A more organic field? A technological field? Identify what your company represents and what your company is really selling.
- Target market
What do you want your customers to feel about your brand? Do you want them to feel intelligent? Comfortable? Attractive? Pinpoint what you want your customers to feel.
What personality do you want your business to embody.
Are you going to be a serious brand? An inspirational brand? A fun brand? A cute brand? A romantic brand? A financially solid brand?
Identifying these three points will allow you to narrow down what the perfect color scheme would be for your color branding.
While there are a lot of other factors to consider like what the competition looks like, what the investors prefer, what the team would be interested in using, and others, finding the perfect color or colors can be quite complicated.
One thing to put in mind when picking out the initial colors is making sure that when the company expands or branches out, these colors will still be able to represent the expansion.
If you’re in a flexible industry like retail, it might be better to pick a base color that would work despite the brand’s growth.
A perfect example of this is Amazon.
While Amazon has undergone changes over the years, the color scheme stays true to what it represents.
What Amazon really represents is cost-efficiency and the feeling that people are getting better deals when they shop from the company.
The use of orange plays well to the company’s expansions.
What does the competition look like?
Although it is important to stay true to the industry, it is still important to stand out from the competition.
If everyone in the competition is using the same colors, it would be hard for consumers to tell which company is which.
Branding also means standing out of the competition and directly attracting the consumer.
In order to find the perfect color to stand out, it is important to pinpoint the competitive marketing advantage that your brand has.
Try to incorporate what advantages the brand has over others and what the core of the company represents.
Brand color palette
Aside from what color to choose, it is important to pick what type of that color should be used.
There are many different variations of a certain color like the shades of blue, the hues, tint, and etc.
Different types of color
- Color shades
Shades happen when black is added.
In easier terms to understand, this refers to how dark a color is
2. Color hues
This refers to the different variations of the three primary colors namely yellow, red, and blue.
Basically, mixing these three colors up can create different colors depending on how much of each color is mixed.
3. Color tint
Tints happen when white is added. In easier terms to understand, this refers to how light a color is.
4. Color codes
It is important to know the exact color codes in order to accurately replicate a color no matter where they are made.
In order to ensure uniformity in the different branding materials, the color codes should be written down or at least saved somewhere.
5. Color tone or saturation
This is basically how far a color goes when it comes to its shade and tint.
It is how the appearance changes with the addition of white and black.
6. PMS and CMYK
PMS means Pantone Matching system and CMYK means Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Key or black.
These are mostly used for printing either off-set or digitally.
7. HEX and RGB
HEX means Hexadecimal Numeral System and RGB means Red, Green, and Blue.
These are usually found on certain screens for things just like websites and emails.
How to create your brand guidelines
Before choosing the color branding, it is important to dive deeper into the brands general guidelines.
Nailing down a strong brand identity is the first step of finding out which colors to use for your brand.
When finally deciding on the colors, it is important to follow these steps in order to ensure not just the right color palette but also the right branding in general.
- Nail down the brand overview
It is important to detail the mission statement, history, and even the personality of the brand.
- Tone of voice
How the brand talks to its consumers is important.
Aside from what the message is, it is important to know how to properly portray it.
- Logo specifics
It is important to make sure that the logo is flexible since it will be appearing in almost everything.
The logo has to look good everywhere from the website to the email and even the product itself.
- Color palette
Make sure to nail down the right CMYK, PMS, HEX, and RGB for later printing.
- Right typography and font
It is important that the font matches both the color and the design of the logo.
If the logo is the words themselves, make sure to choose the right font.
- Image styles
It is very important for the brand images to look good on social media as they look well on physical products as well.
While you can switch them up and tweak them a little bit, make sure to ensure that they keep the quality your brand is promoting.
It is very important to have a set of color choices when building the brand.
The initial color choice might not work best and with different choices, the brand can slowly test out the most effective color branding.