What Does Your Logo’s Color Say About Your Company?
Your logo is often the first thing customers see on your website, office letterhead, company vehicles and building. Your logo helps to identify your brand, and when customers think about your company, your logo is likely one of the first things that come to mind.
Every element about the logo is important, including logo colors. Which color you choose for your logo can say a lot about your company.
There is a psychology to colors and the emotions they evoke in people. However, there is a lot of debate over just how effective this science is in getting people to do what you want. A lot of factors come into play when scientists try to study what colors work best for business purposes. For example, personal preferences and past experiences can impact how a person perceives a color.
What does that mean for your company logo? It means the design process can be tricky. Here are some ways you can use color to make your logo convey your brand’s image and help to attract potential customers:
Colors That Work for Branding
Although different colors may evoke different emotions for different people, there was a study done by Satyendra Singh at the University of Winnipeg on the impact color has on marketing. The research found that when people make instant judgments about a product, 90% of the time it is due to the color used.
For example, if you’re selling deep-sea fishing gear, a lilac pole with gems encrusted on it is not going to go over as well as something that appears more solid and rugged, such as black or dark brown. The same holds true of your logo. Think about the message you’re trying to send and go with a color that is typically associated with that message.
Forbes took a look at some of the most common colors used in business. This knowledge can also be applied to logos:
Green is seen as creative, and most people like the color. It is also associated with nature. One example of the color green used effectively is in the Whole Foods logo. It’s a vivid green that makes one think of fresh spinach and produce. This evokes the healthy associations that tie into the company’s overall image. Imagine if their logo was brown instead?
The Forbes article points out the force of this color and how people tend to make faster decisions when they see it. Some studies have shown that it initiates hunger. That may be why a lot of restaurants use red checkered tablecloths.
Pink is often seen as a sweet and feminine color. If you want to show your company’s softer side, you cater to women or children or you offer sweet treats, then pink is a great color choice for a logo. A good example of this is the logo for Mattel’s Barbie. She is marketed to girls and adult women collectors. The logo is pink. Makes perfect sense.
Black offers a sense of seriousness and strength. If you are marketing to businessmen, offering strength training or dealing with serious topics, a simple black logo can be the perfect choice.
Blue is a color that many people are drawn to. If you have a business that has a wide target demographic, blue might be an excellent color to entice them. One example of a company utilizing blue in their logo is General Electric. Since they make appliances for the home, they have to reach out to a wide target audience from all walks of life. Choosing blue is smart because it will appeal to the majority.
Purple is usually associated with royalty, wealth and success. If you’re offering financial services or advice, purple could be a great color choice. It can also make your company appear established.
Orange is seen as a happy and playful color. If you want your company to be seen as young, creative, fresh and engaging, then orange could be a good color choice.
Although some see yellow as sunny, fresh and energetic, most people dislike the color. A look at color preferences showed that yellow is the least favorite of typical logo colors. The only colors that ranked behind yellow were white and grey. Brown tied with yellow at 3%. In addition, yellow can be difficult to see online and in print.
As you can see, there is a lot to consider when choosing a color for your logo. When making the final decision about your logo, you have to balance the fact that bold colors grab attention but can be seen as being too pushy. Subdued tones are more sophisticated but can be passed over for their bolder counterparts.
No matter what, the bottom line is you’ll have to determine what color works best to convey the message of your brand.
About The Author
Eleanor Hecks is the Editor-in-Chief of Designerly Magazine, an online publication dedicated to providing in-depth content from the design and marketing industries. When she's not designing or writing code, you can find her re-reading the Harry Potter series, burning calories at a local Zumba class, or hanging out with her dogs, Bear and Lucy.