Colour is usually the first thing that springs to mind when we start creating a brand identity – and, for a good reason, too.

Design is a communication tool and colour is an integral part of this process.

The colours you use in your logo, on your website and across all other marketing materials determine – at a glance – how people perceive your business.

In fact, 60% of us decide whether or not we like a brand’s message based on its colours alone.

On top of this, using colours effectively can reinforce your brand’s recognition by up to 80%, drawing people’s attention towards a specific call to action, whether this is a click through to your eCommerce store, or a contact button.

Today, we’re discussing the psychology behind brand hues, as well as providing a few tips on selecting the perfect colour palette.

What colours should I pick for my brand?

Choosing your brand’s colours is not always about going for your favourite shades.

Instead, remember that different colours evoke different emotions.

Below is a snapshot of common colour associations.

Red – Power, passion, love and energy.
Orange – Energy, health, youth and joy.
Yellow – Happiness, positivity, warmth and caution.
Green – Nature, calm, health and growth.
Blue – Corporate, loyal, trust and authority.
Purple – Royalty, luxury, creativity and mystery.
Pink – Feminine, love, bold and modern.
Black – Elegance, professional, serious and classic.

Consider what your business is all about and how you can use colour to communicate this in a powerful way.

How many colours do I need for my brand?

For a logo, we’d recommend sticking with three – maybe four – main colours.

If you pick too many hues, it can look complicated and messy. However, limit yourself to one or two and you may struggle with lack of variety and choice later down the line when creating branded materials.

Alongside your main colours, you need to think about the wider colour palette. This is usually made up of tints, tones and shades that accent and complement the original selection.

Try playing around with your core colours to find your ideal set of hues.

How do I know that my brand colours work well together?

Of course, you want to ensure that every colour complements each other, whilst drawing the right attention to your business.

Some people opt for monochromatic palettes, which include tints and shades of one single colour. However, this can be restricting and mean your brand lacks contrast.

Others opt for analogous colour palettes that involve hues that sit next to each other in the colour wheel. For example, all warm colours or all cool colours.

Complementary colours, which are opposite each other on the colour wheel, can work really well to create a diverse collection of shades to work with.

Is my branding accessible?

Colour blindness affects 1 in 12 males and 1 in 20 women, which means that certain colours cannot be distinguished by these people. This is important to remember when choosing your brand colours as it’s likely that a colour blind person will wish to read your website or other marketing materials.

You can actually put your chosen colour pallete to the test against WCAG 2.0 with the Colour Contrast Analyser.

The handy tool simulates certain visual conditions, such as dichromatic colour blindness and cataracts, to see how your colours appear to those with less than 20/20 vision.

Don’t be afraid to stand out.

A final note from us is to think outside of the box.

If everyone in your industry uses a corporate blue in their logo, opt for something else.

Naturally, this needs to relate to your brand’s personality and USP. Perhaps you have a creative side, or maybe you pride yourself on being eco-friendly?

Use this to boost your brand’s visibility and communicate your message through colour.

If you want to find out more about colours and branding, please get in touch with us today

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T: 01482 755 303 | E: hello@mattixdesign.com