Colors Provoke: Better understand colors in your marketing


Colors in marketing matter. All people love color. Back in preschool everyone wanted to hold the biggest box of crayons or have first dibs on the water-colored paints. We choose certain colors because they make us feel good. Aside from that, little thought, if any, is given as to how or why we choose one color over others. There are myriad factors to consider, such as colors deemed most appropriate for certain distinctive occasions, cultures, personal preferences, upbringing, context and experiences. In the business world color meaning and purpose have a more direct purpose. Will green get people to sip their lattes from Starbucks or get their gluten-free pasta from Whole Foods? According to an article written by Catherine Clifford in, 93% of purchasing judgments are made on visual perceptions and 84.7% of consumers cite color as their main reason for buying a particular product. Suffice it to say that choosing the right color, or colors, for your business is of paramount importance.



We often describe our emotions with color representations. Are you feeling blue, he was green with envy, she saw red and an old Rolling Stones classic Paint It Black are but just a few mood/color associations that spring to mind. We have an innate reaction to color. For example, when you look at red, it actually does increase your heart rate. It is a stimulating color that evokes powerful emotions such as fear, anger and passion.This hearkens back to the caveman days of fire and alarm. Although research shows that the best way for a single woman to attract a man’s attention is to wear red, you may be attracting unwanted attention as well. “There’s a reason why they call it the red light district,” says Leslie Harrington, executive director of The Color Association of The United States, which forecasts color trends.



We know that people attach meaning to colors. Chuck Close, famed American painter and photo-realist, once said: “Boldly be a pop of color in a black and white world.” There’s no denying that we are visual creatures. Think for a moment about that gorgeous woman gazing your way at that last cocktail party. You can probably recall specific details about her appearance: a chic black dress, light-colored eyes, red lips and possibly her actual eye color. You didn’t “see” her personality from across the crowded room. Though you wanted to know more so you reciprocated her visual invitation and approached. Your initial perception was solely visual. You liked what you saw and if the feeling was mutual (and it probably was: hence her gazing at you) than all the better. Perhaps you were donning a sharp suit with the perfect tie, which is probably why she welcomed you with her seductive gaze. Since the beginning of time we have been visual creatures and colors are at the heart of that.



The marketing and advertising industry expertly utilizes color psychology. Companies have heavily invested in research in order to learn how best to maximize the full gamut of color influence, particularly how color motivates people to the point of purchase. Take a moment to think about how companies have managed to redefine the meaning of color-the red and white combination of Coca-Cola, the golden arches of McDonald’s, the green and yellow of John Deere, the black New York Times logo and the blue and gold of Melior Marketing. The psychology of color is a deep and intriguing subject that fascinates scientists, web designers, toddlers, artists, as well as your friends at Melior. Experimenting with colors is not only a lot of fun, it’s also a way to understand and communicate more effectively with others. The next time you’re at a party, think about how certain colors are attracting your attention and have some fun!


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