With Holi around the corner communciator Sandhya Sutodia discusses the impact of colours on branding

“What’s Your Rashee”-a movie made in 2009 and based on the Gujarati novel “Kimball Ravenswood” starring Priyanka Chopra talked about the impact of colour on human beings and how people are subconsciously inclined towards a specific colour. IIM research also reveals that for specific product design, companies use a specific colour. But does colour play any role in branding a company?

Red, blue or green – whatever may be the colour of your choice; it speaks about someone’s personality. Similarly, you can tell a lot about a company judging by the colours they use. Colours play an important role in branding as they can have a significant impact on the mood of the target audience. It can create a lasting first impression or a fleeting last impression – depending on the mix of colours used by the brand.

Colours are more than just a visual aid that conveys emotions, feelings, and experiences. They are the secret behind producing a good identity for a company.

The Psychology of Colours

There are meanings behind various colours and hence, choosing the right colour scheme can make or break a company. In a country like India colours can acquire sectarian overtones very quickly. 

Factors to Consider While Choosing Colours for Your Brand

1. Appropriateness

It is crucial to keep in mind the kind of business and the message being conveyed to the target market while selecting the colour scheme. The intended message should be matched to the appropriate colour shade. For example, traditionally red evokes energy and youthfulness.

2. Target market

It is also important to know the target market to which the brand is offering its service or product. The colour scheme should act as an encouragement to the target customers.

3. Consistency

Consistency in the colour scheme of a brand strengthens its identity in the target market. It also helps the brand to stand out and rise against the competition in the industry. Additionally, consistency gains the trust, loyalty and familiarity of customers.

4. Time Factor

The period of the year, when the company is being launched, has to be taken into consideration as well. For example, in India, Holi - the festival of colours is celebrated in spring. This is often depicted through shades of yellow, which conveys the message of renewal of life.

Universal Meaning of Colours

Every colour has an equivalent meaning behind it and conveys a certain feeling that makes them even more vital. Most colours have universal meanings and here is a quick summary about them:

Blue – Blue is considered to be a very positive colour. It invokes trust, security, and responsibility and is associated with creation and serenity.

Red – Red is a powerful colour as it is highly energetic, aggressive and provocative. It can be used to incorporate passion and energy into a brand.

Green – This colour symbolises health and nature and instils a soothing feeling to the brand.

Yellow – It denotes vibrancy and optimism and can be seen as motivating and captivating. Hence, price tags are often seen in this colour as it helps to get the attention of customers.

Purple – Purple offers sophistication, nostalgia, exclusivity, and royalty, making it perfect for brands selling expensive jewellery.

Orange – This colour can be effective while branding for children as it is considered cheerful, friendly and symbolises fun.

Brown - Brown elicits simplicity and stability and looks very humble.

Black – There is a certain level of sophistication and exclusivity in this colour and hence, it works well with expensive products as well as for serious campaigns.

White – This colour symbolises purity and is very enticing to the human eye.