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We've covered every single color of the rainbow in our two-week Science of Colors series. Each section can help you get a better handle on how colors can affect how people perceive your brand, but I suspect that all of that information can be a little bit overwhelming. If only there were some sort of handy chart that can help you understand the relationship between color and psychology.
Ah, but there is! This Color Psychology infographic shows how some of the biggest brands leverage color to elicit powerful emotional impacts on customers. Let's dive right in and break down every color one by one.
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White - The World Wildlife Fund
The WWF doesn't really promote a central uniform image; rather, the WWF is a collection of environmentalists, scientists, biologist, and everyday Joes who care about the future of endangered species. The panda is the perfect representative for this eco-friendly group. Not only is the panda the poster child of at endangered wildlife, but the white and black colors also evoke feelings of purity and innocence. The simplistic colors make the panda appear almost childlike, desperately in need of our protection.
Yellow - McDonald's
"Hello!" the cashier says with a smile. "Welcome to McDonald's! How can I help you?" McDonald's marketing is all about bright marketing and cheerful dispositions. I mean, just look at their iconic smiling happy meal. If that doesn't make them the perfect candidate for yellow logos, then I don't know what does. McDonald's often incorporates yellow into employee uniforms
and into the interior decoration to create a sunny atmosphere.
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Orange - Nickelodeon
Attention-grabbing and enthusiastic, orange is an excellent color for this popular children's TV network. The splattered orange logo will definitely get noticed by capricious ten-year-olds.
Red - Red Bull
Well, of course they have a red logo. They are Red
Bull, after all!
That's true, but keep in mind that the creators of Red Bull could have named it anything. Why not call it "Blue Bull" or "Green Bull?" It's simple: other colors don't pack as much emotional energy as red
. This high-octane color is the perfect match for this energy drink. Nowadays you can hardly watch a sports event without seeing their iconic red logo.
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Pink - Barbie
Have you ever been to the toy aisle of a retail store? The little girls' section is a sea of pink. Pink uniforms generally serve one primary purpose: to promote femininity. Nowadays, pink is also heavily associated with cancer research. You can add pink to your uniform, but if you add too much pink then a lot of people will probably assume that your company is donating money towards cancer research.
Purple - Hallmark
Purple is probably the strangest color on the spectrum, so it's not immediately obvious why Hallmark would opt for a purple logo. I suspect that the purple is less about the cards and more about the meaning of the word hallmark. According to the dictionary, a hallmark is an official stamp or seal that attests to an item's purity. The purple logo and the company's name promote the idea that Hallmark cards are the official greeting card company, the absolute best of the best. That's right up purple's alley.
Blue - IBM
Blue is adored by companies because it is often considered the most reliable and trusted color. When it comes to technology, reliability is king. Can you imagine how much catastrophe there would be if computer hardware started malfunctioning? Billions of dollars would be lost, planes would start falling out of the sky, and surgeons in the middle of open heart operations would literally be left in the dark. A blue logo
and blue custom embroidered uniforms tell customers, "Don't worry! Our products are perfectly reliable."
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Green - Animal Planet
This logo is actually pretty clever, I have to say. The green color is perfect because it reminds viewers of the great outdoors. The only problem with green is that it tends to be a relaxing color. Animal Planet spiced things up when they flipped the M
on its side and used three different shades of green. Green is a cool color, but the Animal Planet logo is energetic and exciting.
Brown - UPS
Reliable, stable, and useful -- that's the message that UPS sends out with its brown uniforms
. No, they're not interested in looking pretty; the only thing they care about is delivering your package on time.
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Swarovski - Grey
The grey logo mimics the grey-white-silver coloration of Swarovski crystals. The grey color also highlights the versatility of crystals. Because crystals are made rather than mined, the company can produce crystals in a huge variety of shapes and colors. The neutral grey logo reminds customers of that message, "Swarovski crystals go with everything."
007 - Black
Is James Bond sophisticated? Yes. Charming? Yes. Bold and simple? Yes and yes. Black is an excellent color choice for the iconic super spy. What can I say? James Bond and a sleek black tuxedo
go together like a Walther PPK and a sports car with hidden rocket launchers.
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