The Emotion of Color in Advertising

The perception of color is a critical consideration prior to finalizing a marketing strategy. While color trends are important to consider, the basic meaning of colors is timeless, and will outlast any fleeting feelings you may have about what colors to include in your logo, collateral, website, signage, office or storefront paint, etc. Here’s a brief overview:

Red is associated with energy, power and determination – which is why many countries include it on their flags and seals. It can also indicate friction, danger or even war. As an emotionally intense color, red also indicates passion and love. Red attracts attention, so it’s great for call-to-action graphics.

The color of sunshine, yellow implies joy, happiness, intellect and spontaneous energy. Yellow is very effective for attracting attention, so use it to highlight the most important elements of a design. Combine yellow with bold, dark colors for best effect. Avoid using yellow as a tint – it’s just nasty.

Typically associated with sunshine, warmth and health, orange represents enthusiasm, happiness, creativity and stimulation – especially appetite stimulation which is why restaurants and food companies use it. Orange has high visibility, so it highlights important elements of a design.

Green is the color of nature and symbolizes growth, harmony, freshness and yes, money. Use green to indicate safety and eco-friendliness.

A cool color, blue is associated with depth and stability and symbolizes trust, loyalty, intellect, confidence and truth. Use blue to promote cleanliness, air, sky or water and sea, and technology. Dark blue is a favorite of corporate America.

A combination of blue and red, purple symbolizes power, nobility and luxury. Many associate purple with creativity and mystery or magic. Different shades of purple can be used to target children and adults.

White is the color of light, goodness, innocence and purity. Use white as a resting spot for the eye in design.

Associated with power, elegance, formality and mystery, or even the unknown, black helps depth perception and is perfect for contrasting with all other colors in design.

This list is by no means exhaustive, so if you're not sure about your color scheme, tints, shades, or even the differences between CMYK and RGB colors, contact Inspired 2 Design.