Art Creative Ltd

The power of marketing with colour

Martin Castilla            No comments            Sep, 14

Marketing is a vital component of a business’ success, so familiarising yourself with the key elements of successful design.

For instance, you probably know colour is a basic part of your logo and marketing, but did you know that it has a psychological response from viewers? Different colours draw different responses, from trust and security, to a sense of urgency.

This guide, created alongside UK provider of PVC banner printing, Where The Trade Buys, will show you how to use colour in your marketing campaign.

Stories in shades

The psychology of colour has been well-documented, but the offshoot of this theory into its use in marketing is a fairly recent thought. However, there have been many scientific studies into the connection between shades and sales that appear to show a strong correlation. According to a Canadian experiment, nearly 90% of snap decisions regarding consumer products are based solely on colour.

If your customer base is mainly male or female, it’s worth noting that certain studies show a difference between how males and females respond to colour. For example, a study published in the Journal of Retailing found that men believed savings were much greater in value if they was advertised in red rather than black, while the difference was much smaller among women. The imbalance of colour psychology between males and females was also apparent in the study, Colour Assignment. Although blue was popular across the board, this study found that purple was a second-favourite colour for women but the second-least favourite among men. Similarly, other studies on colour attractiveness found that softer hues are preferred by women, while bold shades were liked by men. Are you using the right hues for your main consumer?

Colour can be used to support different marketing goals as well. For example, studies have shown that yellow is utilised to grab attention and should perhaps be the colour of choice in store windows, while red is most people’s key indicator of discount prices and ‘urgency’ and should be used on clearance sales posters for optimum effect. Also, both these shades are warm colours. According to an experiment, these are better at sticking in a viewer’s memory than cool colours (like blue and green). So, it might be good to use them on promotional ads to keep consumers thinking about your offer for longer, as well as your brand logo itself to ensure you come to mind when they next need a product or service you offer.

Different colour combinations can be effective too. Another study found that contrasting shades also improved readability – essential if you want your outdoor banner to be seen by more people from a greater distance.

Personal experience, as well as culture, can change how we view colours, but it’s clear that colour has an impact in some form. It’s certainly worth your consideration when it comes to the few seconds you have to catch a consumer’s eye and attract them to your brand.

The colours of your logo

How much does colour psychology influence brand perspective? According to research compiled by Kissmetrics, 85% of shoppers surveyed say colour is a primary reason for buying something. Also, it was found that colour boosts brand recognition by around 80%.

Especially if you’re rebranding or starting out, consider how colour can change your logo’s message. You can better understand how consumers are affected by colour when you’re bringing something new to the market by employing methods like concept testing. They may help you confirm or re-design your current product concepts based on customer reactions and feedback. Here are the emotions associated with each colour and examples of the successful brands that use them:


Colour Effect Logo
Yellow Optimism and youth Chupa Chups and McDonalds
Green Growth and relaxation Starbucks and Asda
Pink Romance and femininity Barbie and Very
Purple Creative and wise Cadbury and Hallmark
Black Power and luxury Chanel and Adidas
Orange Confidence and happiness Nickelodeon and Fanta
Red Energy and excitement Coca Cola and Virgin Holidays
Blue Trust and security Barclays and the NHS


See how brand are using colour to portray a certain sense about their company? For example, inciting trust for a bank is important, which may be why Barclays chose blue, while Starbucks wants you to relax at their coffee shops and Virgin Holidays wants you to get excited about booking a trip.

Author of Colour Psychology Today: June Mcleod, said that: “One of the greatest assets and one of the easiest ways to sway decision or attract an emotive response – or alienate a consumer – is through colour. Purple with Cadbury; Shell with Yellow; National Trust with Green – they all work and work wonderfully well.”

That’s not to say that only one colour is fit for purpose for each sector. After all, the Halifax and Santander banks feature contrasting colours. But the choice you make is important. Consider the statistic that 80% of clients think a colour is accountable for brand recognition. If you want your customers to gain a sense of loyalty and familiarity with your brand, the colour should reflect your brand’s products, services and character.

Colours in your campaigns

Colour psychology is very effective when launching or rebranding your company. Take beer company, Carlsberg, for example. The marketing team here worked to rebrand using colour with great success. Using white for its Carlberg Export packaging and changing its formerly green bottles to brown; the company achieved 10,000 new distribution points and a sales increase of 10% in the 12 weeks leading to summer in 2017.

What are the ways you can incorporate colour psychology in light of this?

  • Capitalise on the advantages of red and yellow: use these on your large print ads to increase the chances of catching the eyes of passers-by.
  • Contrast your colours: as we discovered, using opposite shades (e.g. red and green) can improve text clarity – essential considering you have just seven seconds to make a bold first impression and get your point across.
  • Consider your demographic: there are clearly some difference in how men and women perceive colour. Who do you mainly sell to? If it’s men, perhaps take these gender studies on board and avoid purple…
  • Work out your brand’s ‘personality’: studies clearly show an affiliation between colour and emotion. Determine what you want consumers to think about your brand and choose a colour that reflects this ethos – whether it’s opulent (black) or fun (orange).

Colour marketing is certain worth the time to research when creating your brand’s marketing profile.