The Subtle Psychology of Colours in Branding

brand colours and their meanings


Color has a greater impact on branding and sales than we initially give it credit for. But how do the colors we select for our logos, packaging and even the background of our webpages affect those who see it?

The Competition for Attention

To quote financial guru Dave Ramsey, the colors you choose for your brand can make or break your business, best exemplified by the realtor signs that blend into the sea of brown and green lawns. This is why realtor signs tend to be bright yellow or another attention-grabbing color.
The right color for this purpose will depend on the environment you?re in.

A product sitting on a shelf amidst a riot of other packages needs to do something different, whether that is a novel color or jarring pattern.

At the same time, you may need to position your product relative to the rest of your product line or your competition. This is why companies sometimes borrow part of the color palette of their competitor?s product without duplicating it exactly.

brand colours and their meanings
brand colours and their meanings

The Psychology of Colors

Humans already associate specific emotions and concepts with a number of colors.

Any brand must be careful to select colors for its packaging that evokes the emotions they want customers to feel. For example, packaging that makes people feel like they?re warned away from the product won?t buy it unless they?re specifically seeking something exciting.

However, colors don?t evoke hyper-specific emotion. For example, there?s no magic shade of purple to make someone think they?re smart and upscale if they touch it. Instead, there are broad emotional connotations for specific colors. We?ll address brand colors and their meanings here.

21 Brand Colours And Their Meanings


First, yellow is associated with clarity, warmth, life, and energy. Orange represents cheerfulness, youthful energy, and confidence.


It is often used in warnings and notifications because it is almost as attention-grabbing as red. Red is more powerful. It is associated with boldness, danger, energy, and excitement. The sight of blood can be terrifying, red berries may be poisonous, and the sight of red cheeks suggests youth or vigor. Red can represent love, lust, strength, heat, and power.


People don?t see pink as a variation of red. Pink is especially feminine. It is also the color of sentimentality, cuteness, and romance.


Purple is associated with wisdom, royalty, mystery, spirituality, creativity, and imagination.


Blue suggests strength, nobility, authenticity, trust, status and dependability. Yet blue can be associated with depression and sadness, too.


Green is associated with life, health, growth, and peace. It is often associated with wealth and prestige. This is a logical choice for organic products and anything tied to the financial industry.


Grey is associated with calm neutrality. Just be aware of the fact that it will blend into the background unless complemented by other, brighter colors.


Brown is associated with simplicity, honesty, the Earth, nature and wholesomeness. This is why it is often used on natural food and beauty products. However, it can be dangerous if it reminds people of dirt or poo. That?s bad unless you?re selling fertilizer or potting soil.

brand colours and their meanings
brand colors and their meanings


Black is associated with grief, death, formality, luxury, and sophistication. It is the default color of text on any other color background. It is a classic color that is often bold as long as there is enough of a color contrast. However, glossy black is seen as more sophisticated, while matte black is literally a background color in most cases.


White is associated with purity, innocence, simplicity, starkness and minimalism. You can?t build a brand identity off just the color white, but it makes any other color pop out.
Specific shades of a color can carry very specific meanings.

Dark Blue

Dark blue evokes thoughts of a blue-blooded royal and authority.

Light Blue

light blue is associated with down-to-earth or family oriented products. That?s why light blue is so common on baby products.

Hot Pink

Hot pink suggests excitement, fun and youthfulness. Light pink is associated with little girls. Dusty pink is more sentimental.

Light Green

Light green suggests reliable, hard-working competence; it is periodically used for intellectual or technical products. On the other hand,

Dark Green

Dark green is more closely tied to wealth, prestige and abundance. Dark green with a hint of brown evokes thoughts of the earth; whether you want to have your product associated with pine forests depends on your business.

Dark Purple

Dark purple is associated with luxury and royalty.

Light Purple

light purple is tied to femininity and charm while still being associated with glamor or the upper class. This is why you often see light purple on feminine products and baby products, where the blue version is aimed at men and boys. Light purple can evoke sentimentality and nostalgia, too.

Dark Yellow

Darker yellow is seen as rugged, masculine, or tough.

Bright Yellow

Bright yellow is associated with clarity, cheerfulness and optimism.

Neon Yellow

Neon yellow is specifically used in warning signs and informational notices.


Gold is specifically associated with wealth and sunlight.

Above fine variations in emotional associations are why you want to have marketing test customers? reactions to a color scheme instead of making assumptions.

The Associations between Colors and Brands

Colors and especially color combinations can be used to evoke specific feelings.

For example, American brands often use a mix of red, white and blue to appeal to patriotism and pride. With those colors combined in their logo, they don?t have to put a flag on the box to advertise that they?re ?made in America? or proud to be American.

Using other colors associated with a particular cause lets you tap into that well of emotion and associate it with your brand. Do take care to only associate with causes that are a point in your favor with your customers.

Does your brand have an existing color scheme?

You?ve already created an association between your brand and those colors. Any new packaging needs to contain those colors in order for those scanning the shelves for your product to be able to find it.

A modified logo should retain the same color scheme in order to retain its continuity. Make changes slowly, such as adding an additional element, a new hint of color, or lightening the shade of one piece of the design.

The colors you use can relay other information to customers.

For example, a dark blue and grey package on the classic recipe could sit next to the lighter blue and grey package of the diet version. The lighter colors tell the customer at a glance which one is ?lighter? in calories.

Hope you enjoy this post about Brand Colours And Their Meanings. Also, I would like to invite you to read Attractive Words for marketing and this will help you to build your brand.

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