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Go Media: We’ve Got Your Branding Colored!

The impact of color on your company

Color is one of the simplest, most primitive forms of communication on earth. It’s also one of the most effective and yet, our Cleveland branding experts know, it’s one of the most commonly-overlooked.

Think about it: In nature, color can very clearly warn of danger. Imagine the bright red of a poisonous berry or the stark yellow-and-black of a stinging wasp. We are inherently evolved to associate vivid colors with powerful emotions. From a very young age, we are drawn to color. We know that color can convey messages, inspire emotions and add brilliance to otherwise ordinary things.

It only makes sense, then, that Cleveland branding experts would use color to their advantage – especially when research has proven that color psychology can effectively evoke action. Consider that research according to Colorcom.com found that:

  • Color increases branding recognition by 80 percent;
  • Color advertisements are 42 percent more likely to be read than the same images in black-and-white;
  • Color can improve readership by 49 percent and reading comprehension by 73 percent.

In a 2006 study called, “Impact of Color in Marketing,” Canadian researchers concluded 90 percent of impulse judgments made about products were solely based on color.

Colors influence how customers view the branding “personality” of a company.

So color definitely matters. But wielding it effectively can be a different story. We have to be very mindful of both our audience and the context. That’s because color can mean something totally different from one person to the next, depending on:

  • Preferences
  • Experiences
  • Cultures
  • Gender
  • Upbringing
  • Contexts

For example, some people see yellow as bright and cheerful. Others associate it with crappy fast-food.

And let’s say you settle on a general color. Your chromatic quest is far from over. For example, let’s say you choose red. Great. Now which of the hundreds of shades are you going choose? Ruby or Rust? Rose or Lava?

A 2011 study published in the Journal of Sensory Studies found that more important than the actual color you choose is the appropriateness in relation to the product. So for example, a company that specializes in selling all-natural, organic products, may want to shy away from a bright fuchsia or neon yellow because they feel inauthentic and artificial.

When it comes to branding, psychologists writing for the Journal of Marketing Research have concluded most brand personalities can be broken down in to one of the following:

  • Sincere
  • Excited
  • Competent
  • Sophisticated
  • Rugged

Although brands could be some combination of these, generally most fall primarily into one of these categories. Once you identify the traits with which your firm generally aligns, our branding experts can begin to examine the color scheme. For example, purple may align with “sophisticated” while red could pair well with “excitement.”

Colors have a lot of stereotypical associations (i.e., Yellow is cheerful, blue is calm, etc.), but what almost every major study on this subject concludes is that you can’t rely on that. You have to determine which colors support your brand identity and personality.

For example, some might automatically think, “Brown means rugged.” Sure, it could be associated with the earth, the outdoors, etc. But if you’re a chocolate company, brown could also be associated with sophistication. If you’re hyping a Thanksgiving sale, brown could be associated with a warm, sincere, inviting feeling. If you’re in the coffee business, brown (or rather, “mocha”) could be used to sell excitement. It’s all going to depend on the context and your target audience.

Determining your branding mood or feeling is essential in choosing the right color. We can help.

To learn more about our Cleveland branding services, call Go Media at 216.939.0000 or contact us online.

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At Go Media, every great relationship starts with a conversation and some free advice.

Go Media has been a staple in the Cleveland graphic design, logo design, and website design for more than two decades. We understand marketing, brand building, and beautiful design - and we're passionate about helping each of our clients look - and function - at their best.

We believe in creating remarkable design experiences, going beyond the boundaries of technology to create provocative web design & branding that gets noticed. Our clients trust us to deliver inspired creativity unique to them, service that's personal and responsive, and expectations and costs that are transparent. We strive to create work that's not only authentic and bold - but impactful.

We'll be happy to provide insight on whatever your design or development situation may entail.

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