Logo Design: How Colors Guide Consumers
Animals in the natural world use color signals to communicate important messages to each other. The bright colors of poison dart frogs warn of their danger to predators, red berries stand out and animals notice them, and male Birds of Paradise put on a colorful show for their females. Communicating through color is not only for the animals. Clearly, visual cues help people navigate modern life, too.
The role of color
Colors are a key consideration in brand and logo development. The palette selected for the logo identity and supporting colors used throughout various communication pieces are intentional, whether to evoke emotion, provide visual cues or collectively tell a story. The colors selected for a palette plays a big role in the success of marketing and advertising campaigns, because well-defined color schemes give consumers visual cues about the promises of the brand and elicit emotional response.
The impact of a brand mark's color may be unconscious to the consumer, but it's an important exercise for an ad agency or marketing firm with the client team to undertake. Determining brand or campaign colors is about science and emotion. Colors elicit a variety of emotions from us. The wrong colors can be disastrous for a company. This is why we recommend a brand exercise with clients to experiment with color and determine the palette that expresses the client's brand promise.
The emotions of color
We usually associate fast food brands with warm, bright colors because they catch our attention. Vibrant tones are, in fact, well received by just about everyone. More often than not, fast food is an impulse buy: while driving down the road, the flash of gold or red catches our eye and our ravenous hunger sets in, not to be satisfied until we've chowed down into a Big Mac.
Imagine if McDonald's changed out the golden arches for muted blue ones. The restaurant would lose the pizzazz and immediacy of the promise. The arches would blend in with the sky and competitors' brands would stand out and take the lead.
Blue represents security and solid stability. Because of this, banks often use blue in their visual brand marks. The light blue color Pepsi used in the Pepsi Refresh project was a nice modern blue, which stands for health, wellness, and balance.
As we all know, green has become a very important color and word in the last decade. Companies that want to be known as “green” often incorporate the color into their palette. On the other end of the spectrum, red is one of the colors most widely used in advertising. It is everywhere from fast food to lipstick, and red stands for passion, love, food, and vitality.
If your logo identity is flat or your brand's color palette is undefined, have you considered a branding refresh for your business?