Color has an unbelievably powerful impact on emotions and feelings. It is imperative that you use color psychology when building all facets of your brand. It is no mistake that the powerhouse companies have chosen a color-scheme and stuck with it throughout the years. When you think of Google I bet that colorful logo pops into your head immediately.

Below is the meaning of the basic colors in the Western Hemisphere. Keep in mind that different societies and cultures have different views of different colors.

White is the color that represents purity, innocence (a white wedding dress), neutrality (surrender flag), sterility (doctors often wear white), peace and youth. It is also known for symbolizing light, good (angel), snow, winter, cleanliness, simplicity, and security.

Black is the color that represents intelligence (graduation robes), classic or new, evil, death (funerals), elegance, wealth, mystery, fear, darkness, mystery (space), modernity, power, sophistication, and emptiness. When worn it has a slimming quality and tends to make the wearer look more professional. Too much black can be overwhelming.

Grey, a mixture of white and black is a boring color. It can symbolize humility, respect, reverence, stability, subtlety, wisdom, old age, pessimism, boredom, decay, decrepitude, dullness, pollution, urban sprawl, strong emotions, balance, neutrality, and depression. Too much grey evokes a feeling of nothingness but a little bit of grey can give your product a solid feel.

Red gives a feeling of intensity and passion like no other color. It's no accident that you see a lot of red on adult web sites. Red often softens other colors around it. Red can also have a physical effect, increasing respiration rates, raising blood pressure and make the heart beat faster. Just a spot of red will draw in the eye. Red is the color of energy, love, strength, fire, sex, romance, excitement, speed, danger, anger, heat, arrogance, masculinity, power, war, ambition, leadership, danger, blood, aggression, and blood.

Blue is the most calming of the colors. It is often people’s favorite color. It is the color of the sky and the ocean. It is the best color to wear to an interview because it is non-threatening yet confident. Blue symbolizes seas, productivity, calmness, trust, coolness, water, ice, tranquility, unity, wisdom, royalty, technology, winter, depression, air, light, friendliness, religion, confidence and dependability.

Green is also a very calming color. It is the color of money and nature. It is associated with good luck, wealth, harmony, peace, envy, spring, rebirth, renewal, fertility, environment, grass, harmony, stability, jealousy, balance, creativity and earth.

Yellow is associated with laughter, happiness and good times. It has actually been shown to release serotonin in the brain, but too much yellow can evoke a feeling of anger or annoyance. Like red if it is over-used it becomes quickly over-powering but the right amount can be an effective marketing tool to gain more sales. Yellow symbolizes sunlight, joy, happiness, optimism, summer, hazards, dishonesty, friendship, femininity, wealth, dishonesty, and hope.

Brown is the color of nature, dirt and skin tones. It gives has an environmental feeling and is associated with organic products like green. Brown also symbolizes, depth, richness, rusticism, tradition, dullness, filth, poverty, roughness, stability, calmness and simplicity.

Purple is a regal, royal color. It is associated with wealth, prosperity, wisdom and rich sophistication. Overused however, it can put on an air of being artificial and fake. Purple can also symbolize nobility, envy, sensuality, spirituality, creativity, nostalgia, ceremony, mystery, enlightenment, arrogance, flamboyance, gaudiness, exaggeration, profanity, sexuality confusion, and pride.

Orange is the most energetic color. It is fun, happy and energetic and warm. It is also associated with embarking on a new attitude. Orange also symbolizes balance, enthusiasm, balance, heat, fire, playfulness, aggression, arrogance, gaudiness, over-emotion, warning, danger, autumn, and desire.

Be certain that the color or colors that you choose for your brand are:

  1. Applicable. Choose colors that evoke the emotion you are trying to portray. Don’t choose a color just because it is your favorite.
  2. Relevant. Test your color choices with your target audience before committing.
  3. Culturally correct. Make sure it works in all parts of the world where you plan to work or do business. In America white may mean peace and good but it may be the color of mourning in another country. If you are an international company this is even more important.
  4. Applied consistently. Always use the same shade and hue. Your designer will know how to keep the colors exactly consistent.
  5. Constant. Use your chosen colors on all of your correspondence and web presence. (Stationary, web-page, logo, email etc.)

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