One of the oldest fields within graphic design is the psychology of colour. We use this psychological approach to understand how we interpret the shades of light we call colours. Likewise, thanks to it, we know that each colour has a meaning and an emotional charge that comes from our evolution. Thus, the use of colour in marketing campaigns is a very powerful tool.
As a marketing tool, the psychology of colours provides a lot of possibilities in today’s market. In fact, everything we know about it, such as its characteristics and tools.
Comes from its use in different branches of design. This includes branches like corporate and web design.
Likewise, this is a resource that BluCactus, as a marketing agency, understands very well. Therefore, our aim is to help you correctly use colours in your marketing campaign. This will then allow you to give your brand the exposure it needs in the market. To understand this and other aspects. In this article, we will explore the importance of colour from a psychological and advertising point of view.
Everything about the psychology of colour: definition, basic notions, and most important technical concepts of the psychology of colour
We know that this field analyzes and researches the visual sciences such as colours. Therefore, we can define it as a set of methods that studies the influence of colours on our behaviour. Because of this, designers can get information on how consumers behave in the face of them. Thus, they can understand how the influence of colour affects our shopping habits.
We must highlight that we can apply this method in many ways. However, in recent decades, its use has become more relevant within the advertising sector.
They, in their bet on a new market, have increased the demand for services related to the use of colours in advertising. We’ve known the relationship between colours and our way of thinking since ancient times.
Likewise, we’ve seen evidence of this during the times of the Mayan and Chinese civilizations.
In those times, people associated each colour with a natural element which then gave them their own meaning.
The Mayans are a clear example of this. Here, they associated the colours yellow, black, and white with the four cardinal points.
In contrast, alchemy is another element that design historians link with the birth of the psychology of colour.
What were the main historical contributions that motivated the birth of colour theory?
The motivation to include this theory within the current design sciences came from Sir Isaac Newton’s studies on the light. His essay, “Optics” from 1704, is what kick-started the transition between what we knew about colours and what we know today.
However, despite Newton’s work, this theory needed more contributions to become what it’s today.
On the other hand, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe contributed a lot to the evolution of this theory.
He did this with the release of his works on the theory of colour. His work titled “Color Theory” showcased the importance of how we perceive colours.
In it, he tried to take this study to new heights that, at that point, had never been seen before.
The works of psychologist Eva Heller also made a huge impact on the historical advances of colour theory. She was against the idea that the meaning of each colour was the same everywhere.
Thanks to her discoveries, we know now that the meaning of each colour isn’t something that we know from the moment we’re born.
Instead, we learn them as we grow up and adapt to our society’s patterns of language.
The influence of the use of colour within the world of marketing and advertising:
How do brands use them to control and manage purchasing habits?
According to the Color Research Institute, we know that the use of images has a direct impact on the behaviour of customers when shopping. This is because, once the customer sees a product, it will take them 90 seconds to process all the information. Thus, the colour gathers all this information for the customer to see.
Most scholars estimate that this value has an important range of close to 69%. Nowadays, marketing specialists have given many qualities to the use of colour psychology. Because of this, the meaning of colour is now part of the branches of advertising design. Here, every interaction that the public has with advertising supports, is a subject of study for specialists. Furthermore, the objective of advertising is to come up with a combination that sets apart a brand from the rest.
The meanings of colours according to psychology
A brief analysis of the interpretation of shades according to the historical, cultural context, and their level of positioning in the market.
The colours we see are a result of the refraction of light, which produces a range of seven colours.
These colours lie between the 380 and 750-nanometer range. Thus, this information is important because it allows graphic designers to create artificial colours.
They do this through the use of a computer capable of creating a color palette in RGB format.
This is where the primary colours are red, green, and blue. This has allowed us to study how the wavelength of light can affect the shade of colours. Likewise, this is an inquiry that comes from the psychology of colours.
Furthermore, this explains how each colour can affect the context where it’s applied. Because of this, colour is considered to be part of the “visual language”.
Likewise, it can have a lot of meanings and applications. Thus, when we use it to advertise a product or brand, its interpreted from this perspective.
On the other hand, thanks to the use of psychology studies, we were able to establish three factors that define each colour. These are, “hue, “lightness”, and “saturation”. These are widely known elements that let us distinguish each of their characteristics.
Meanings of the colour yellow
This is a special case since it can have positive and negative connotations. In short, this is a colour that can mean joy but also caution. Because of this, a marketing expert must know how to use these meanings to create effective ads.
A positive aspect of this colour is that, since it’s so bright, it easily attracts attention. In fact, many companies use it to grab the attention of people to their brand or product. According to the psychology of colour, the different meanings of yellow can evoke different feelings in people.
- Increased Appetite
This last meaning is the reason why fast-food restaurants often use this colour for their brands.
McDonald’s is a clear example of this but they aren’t alone.
Another example is found in the packaging of potato chips Lays.
Likewise, due to its status as a primary colour, the meaning of it can bring out powerful emotions from people.
The psychology of colour. What are the most frequent applications of yellow colour in the world of advertising?
According to the psychology of colour, the yellow tone can improve our mood by being a value with a lot of energy.
Therefore, we must keep this in mind when using it.
This colour is mostly used in products catering to a very young audience, such as kids. Likewise, it’s also associated with fun activities.
One negative aspect of this colour is that because we also associate it with caution, it can bring out feelings of anxiety.
In fact, in the case of traffic lights, the colour yellow is very effective. This is because it conveys feelings of closeness, caution, and care. Thus, we can use it to attract compulsive buyers.
The psychology of colour, Meanings of the colour blue
According to studies of the meanings of colours, blue is one of the most popular. In fact, almost everyone likes the colour blue. This is a colour that can mean confidence and stability.
Besides, we can consider it a formal colour without being too serious. Because of this, we often use this colour in financial institutions like banks.
The reason for this is because, according to the psychology of colours, it makes people feel safe. Likewise, when we use this colour, we can also improve the loyalty of our consumers and customers.
On the other hand, it’s worth highlighting the results of the studies carried out by the Journal of Business Research during 2003. Thanks to them, we know that stores with a blue-based colour scheme see the return of customers more frequently. In contrast, retail establishments based on red and yellow don’t experience this.
Besides, we know that, according to the psychology of colour, the colour blue can make a customer feel trust towards any brand.
Likewise, we can intensify this reaction if we also use colours like green.
At the same time, to achieve the best possible results, we must consider the contrast between cold and warm tones.
In fact, the meanings of the colours blue and green are frequently combined, as they allow for such contrast.
Uses and importance of the colour blue in the world of marketing.
We can associate the colour blue with words such as calm, authority, security, peace, and trust. Likewise, since this is the colour of water, it can also mean freshness and serenity.
In contrast, this colour can also make us feel cold, depressed, sad, and distanced. Similar to green, blue is known to calm and relax our bodies.
In fact, this calming effect is the reason why hospitals or medical products resort to this colour, as it can help patients feel better.
In addition, we use this colour for the packaging of beverages and natural products since it relates to water. Likewise, traditional brands generally use the colours blue and green on their products. This is because they make us feel secure and that the product is reliable.
The psychology of colour, Meanings of red
Because of its wide range of meanings, red is known as the colour of energy and power. Therefore, this is an element that you must use correctly for the advertising of your business. If you do this, it will function as a powerful wake-up call.
On the other hand, marketing experts assure that the meaning of the colour red can come to remember a stop sign.
Therefore, red can become a symbol that makes our consumers step on the brake. This is because it’s a colour commonly used as an alarm signal.
You can use these principles to your advantage by including them in your marketing campaign.
This colour can be used to launch discounts and purchases. This is because it encourages the impulsive acquisition of products and services.
Furthermore, if you want your brand to have a solid identity, we recommend using the colour red in your logo.
The colour red differs from other colours due to its ability to affect our physical reactions like no other.
This depends on the context where it’s applied. Therefore, the colour red can produce an increase in our blood pressure, heart rate, and breath.
The relationship between red and the psychology of colour in advertising for my business
This colour can create a sense of urgency that can make the consumer decide to make a purchase at the right time.
For this reason, it’s an excellent option for the promotion of offers and related.
A clear example of this is the brands McDonald’s and Coca-Cola.
These companies use the full potential of the meaning of the colour red. This is because it can stimulate the consumer, such as their sense of appetite.
This colour also can give off a feeling of sophistication. Here, experts recommend combining it with soft shades of black and white. An example of this is Valentine’s Day as this is a day where brands often use this combination.
Meanings of green
This is a very versatile and friendly colour that, if we use it properly, can give a good impression to the consumer. Likewise, the colour green can mean health, environment, and goodwill.
In fact, some companies use this colour to show their commitment to the environment. However, some experts insist that this colour isn’t exclusive to this field.
We can relate this colour to money, so it also represents wealth and abundance. The meaning of the colour green mainly represents concepts like health, tranquillity, and nature. Because of this, we can use it to convey a feeling of relaxation. Likewise, you can also use it to promote the conservation of the environment.
Furthermore, since this colour can represent mental harmony, it can help your consumers to make the decision of buying your product.
Something positive about the colour green is that it relates to our perception of balance, calm, fertility, and good luck. Likewise, it can represent healing, new beginnings, growth, and renewal.
It’s also very common to see this colour in banks and other institutions that deal with large amounts of money. In contrast, this colour can also represent negative concepts such as envy, greed, and lack of experience. Consequently, we can associate it with the impulsiveness of youth.
Regarding its influence on our physical reactions, this colour can lower our blood pressure and produce a feeling of calmness. This is very different from what we’ve seen so far with the colors red and yellow.
The psychology of colour, Meanings of orange
The colour orange is a colour that directly relates to energy. Likewise, it’s a warm colour similar to red and yellow but with a more youthful image.
Because of this, this colour can be quite successful at attracting attention.
Thanks to the psychology of colour we know that this colour implies fun and novelty.
Similarly, this colour can make customers feel like they are interacting with a company at the forefront.
On the other hand, its meaning is also related to affordability and fairness.
Because of this, brands like Payless and Home depot use it in their stores. In addition, this colour can also mean beauty, energy, enthusiasm, and vitality.
It’s a very cheerful colour, even more so than other warm colours such as red and yellow. Likewise, it’s the colour of change as it’s closely related to the passing of the seasons.
Since this colour has a lot of positive meanings, they aren’t many negative ones. Nonetheless, we should still be careful with it since it’s a stimulating colour. From a physical point of view, this colour can raise our appetite. Thus, we can frequently find it on the packaging of flavoured food and beverages.
Meanings of black
The colour black is one that can be easily adapted to anything.
We often think about this colour alongside white.
Likewise, we can think of black as a traditional, exciting, and relaxing colour.
Even if these are different qualities, we know that they can express them all.
Furthermore, the meanings of black in colour psychology are drama and the power of the message to express.
Also, one of the most effective uses of black is as a contrasting colour.
On the other hand, the positive and negative connotations of this colour are the same in some sort of way.
An example of this can be its sense of formality.
This means that it’s colour that reflects seriousness and boredom.
The first of these features is great for products that need the customer’s trust. Also, among the meanings of the colour black are elegance, fashion, mystery, and power.
Since this is a colour of sophistication, we recommend using it for expensive products such as makeup and luxury clothing.
Likewise, this is a colour that can make even the cheapest products appear more luxurious.
Thus, we recommend you use it on the packaging of your products.
The psychology of colour, Meanings of White
We can often see this colour alongside the colour black. This is because it allows us to establish contrasts between objects. Likewise, this colour can mean purity and simplicity. Thus, this is the perfect colour for companies that seek to transmit these concepts in their marketing campaigns.
In addition, we can see these concepts very easily while using white. Therefore, the vast majority of medicines use this colour in their packaging.
Another example would be products like skincare creams. The colour white can also symbolize modernity and honesty.
We can see that there are a lot of electronic companies that mainly use this colour. Apple is a prime example of this. Therefore, it can easily attract attention.
This is even better after knowing that it does this without being too striking as red or yellow.
However, the colour white also has its disadvantages.
The negative associations of the meaning of the colour white include mainly being insipid, cold, impersonal, and unoriginal. In regards to the physical aspect of it, this colour is very similar to blue in the way it’s a refreshing colour.
Use the meanings of colours and the Psychology of Color in your Branding and Marketing!
BluCactus and its design plans allow you to use the psychology of colour in advertising for your business
At BluCactus we’ve reinvented the way the psychology of colour was used in corporate advertising.
To do this, we blur the barrier that exists between online and offline marketing. Likewise, we do it through the use of comprehensive design services.
Thus, we not only understand the meaning of colours but we also create the best strategies for you.
On the other hand, two features have contributed to the development of the quality of our services. Our location in Dallas has allowed us to enjoy an important place in the Canadian market. In addition, we currently have a wide national and international customer base. Second, we have got a global reach thanks to our ability to work in more than six languages. Based on this, we know that the meanings of colours comprise a code that has no limits. This is where the important thing is how the user can remember your company. Therefore, the objective of our team is to strengthen the corporate identity of each of our clients.
3 advantages of hiring BluCactus for the management of your branding, corporate identity, and marketing projects
The psychology of colours plays a big role in the way our customers can understand us. This is almost as important as the quality of our services or products. Thus, three features have allowed BluCactus to work for important brands in Canada and the world. They are:
Starting from the meaning of the colours. You can position your brand by giving it the innovation and freshness it needs.
This way, you will be able to grab the attention of new customers from various markets.
Greater integration with your staff and workers:
We at BluCactus apply colour psychology in such a way that it allows us to create an excellent work environment. This is important because a brand must know how to keep its staff stimulated. This way it will be able to remain above the competition.
Even if your competitors have a level of quality similar to yours, we guarantee your success. This is because by using the meanings of colours, we allow your product to generate a great impact. Thus, your brand will be remembered.
Final notes: BluCactus has all the resources to implement colour psychology in its branding and marketing campaigns
You must use colour psychology to have a successful marketing strategy.
This will allow you to grab the attention of the customer through the use of visual media.
This is because the colour is distinguished from afar. Likewise, it’s part of the customer’s first impression of the brand and products.
So get the best first impression with the right colours.
In turn, the psychology of colour shouldn’t be taken lightly. In the area of branding, you must communicate the value of your brand in the most concrete way possible.
Thus, you must consider what exactly your business needs to then make the right decisions in this regard.
So if you need a team specialized in digital design and marketing, BluCactus Toronto, Canada is your best choice. We’ve worked with all types of businesses and companies. Thus, we’ve got the right experience to help you and your company.
Let us design the perfect solution for you and your business to increase your sales. At BluCactus we are known for promoting your company or venture. Contact Us!