Think of the color of a Coca-Cola can or a McDonald’s restaurant. These brands have used color psychology to form powerful associations in the minds of their customers. Brand color psychology is about more than just matching a brand’s signature color. It’s about the feelings and emotions these colors evoke in us. The red color of Coca-Cola is forever linked to feelings of positivity, fun, and energy. McDonald’s golden arches are so iconic that it’s hard not to associate them with happiness, optimism, and french fries.
The study of how a brand’s color affects the way we perceive it is called color psychology. Color affects our emotions, and these emotions have a major influence on how we behave as consumers. Brand color psychology is a way to predict the effects of color on consumer response. Brand designers use it when rebranding to gain consumer trust.
An understanding of color psychology in branding can help you better achieve the main goal of branding—shaping the perceptions that drive consumer behavior. While the effect that different colors have on our emotions varies based on gender, cultural context, personal experience, and neurological variances, there are some general guidelines supported by numerous color psychology studies. Depending on the context in which you see it, the color red can evoke feelings of romance or danger, or blue can call to mind emotions like serenity or coldness. But what about colors such as orange and grey? Are they emotional colors? And what of more subtle emotions like harmony or hope? Which colors are most associated with those?
Because color is among the most fundamental visual stimuli in the human neuropsychological sequence of cognition, the answers to these questions are important.