Updated: Feb 18
By: Matt Solar
Your brand’s colors can tell more than you can imagine about your business. The psychology of color can help your business establish trust and familiarity by eliciting the right emotions. It’s no surprise that the most popular brands in the world have a strong association with their logos.
Their colors tend to reflect their branding, even when they don’t involve any text on them.
This is due to the power of colors and their ability to increase the brand recognition with the desired reactions that they may provoke. Studies have found that a product’s color influences 60 to 80% of a customer’s purchasing decision. This means that the right choice of color does not only strengthen the brand association, but it can also affect your total sales.
As a marketer, it is useful to explore how the psychology of colors can send the right message to your target audience. Your brand’s colors should be integrated across your site, your landing pages, your logo, your product, and any other collateral that you’re creating. Stronger branding increases the impact of seeing the right use of colors making an impact on your business.
We’ve decided to have a closer look at all the colors and how each marketer can use them to connect with their audience.
Analyzing the World’s Top 100 Brands
We wanted to analyze the world’s top 100 brands, defined by their brand value, to explore the most popular uses of colors.
Here’s what we’ve found.
Blue seems to be the winning color, as it shows up in 33% of the top 100 brands. Red comes second by showing up in 29% of the brands, and black or greyscale make the third most popular choice with 28%. Finally, 13% use yellow or gold.
What’s interesting is that 95% of the top 100 brands only use one or two colors. This can be explained as an attempt to maintain consistency by staying simple in their branding.
Moreover, text is not important to many of these brands, as only 41% involved it in their logos.
This serves as proof that a strong logo can make a connection with the audience, even with no use of text to supplement it. In fact, 9% of the brands didn’t even feature their company’s name on their logo, going one step further with the simplicity of their logos.
How Do People Respond to Brand Colors?
Every color elicits a different response from humans. Colors can be divided into two main categories: warm and cool. Warm colors tend to be associated with energy, while cool colors are linked with calmness and security.
But how do each of the following colors affect us and what does that mean for your brand? Here’s an overview of what differentiates each color and how your brand can pick the right mix of them.
Red evokes a passionate and visceral response. It is a color that increases your heart rate, makes your breath faster, and is generally associated with energy, excitement, and passion. It’s one of the colors that is attention-grabbing, while it can also be provocative and excitable.
Color code: aggressive, energetic, provocative, attention-grabbing, passionate
Purple is a sophisticated yet mysterious color. It tends to be used with higher-end products due to its association with royalty and elegance. Purple’s mysterious element is also linked with spirituality, and it can bring a magical element to your branding.
Color code: royalty, sophistication, nostalgia, mystery, spirituality
Blue is the most popular color choice for the top brands. It is thought to put people at ease, as it reminds them of the sky and the ocean. Blue is also associated with trust, security, and confidence which make a great combination for the brands that want these elements in their message.
Color code: trustworthy, dependable, secure, responsible, confident
Green is a color that is synonymous with calmness, safety, and freshness. Its various shades can create a unique brand identity for your company. Green tends to be associated with health along with the feelings of peace and serenity.
Color code: Wealth, health, prestige, serenity, generosity, safety
Yellow is a popular color choice for brands that want to evoke a feeling of positivity in their identity. Its association with the sun on its different shadows brings out hope and optimism. Yellow also stands out among other colors, which makes a yellow brand identity creative and appealing.
Color code: positivity, light, warmth, motivation, creativity, happiness
Orange makes an ideal color choice for brands that want to blend the optimism and the brightness of yellow and the passion and the energy of red. It is a creative and cheerful color that evokes a friendly and adventurous feeling.
Color code: vitality, fun, playful, exuberant, outgoing
Brown represents the earthly simplicity and it is usually preferred to reflect stability and strength. It’s comforting in its simplicity and is preferred by brands that want to be classical and trustworthy, without proceeding to bold moves. Brown is associated with the earth and can also remind people of dirt, so there needs to be a careful use of it, especially if it stands out as the main color for a brand.
Color code: earth-like, natural, simplistic, durable, comforting
Black is another popular color option for brands and it tends to be one of the most classic options. It’s both classic and sophisticated and it can make a brand identity stand out. It seems to work perfectly with luxury products, blending the classic and powerful elements. Black is one of the colors that can be combined with others to add a stronger emotion, without losing the classical appeal.
Color code: Prestige, value, timelessness, sophistication, power
White represents simplicity, purity, and also cleanliness. These three make it extremely popular in the healthcare sector, in the cleaning business, but also in the child-related businesses. White can also bring out a feeling of trust by tapping in to purity and simplicity.
Color code: pure, noble, clean, soft
It’s useful to understand the psychology of each color when creating your brand’s identity. Your color choice can build your brand’s aesthetic while also bringing you closer to your target audience. Use the colors that will highlight your brand’s strengths, evoking the right feelings for the right audience.
Do the color choices you’ve selected for your brand align with the feeling you’re trying to give to your customers and prospects?