Color is a crucial part of a brand’s identity. It helps convey who you are as a company, helps you stand out from your competitors and serves as a way for people to recognize your brand.
Since colors are so vital to a brand, you should take care when choosing your company’s palette. Here are a few tips to help you pick out the right hues for your logo, merchandise, website and more.
Consider Color Psychology
When trying to decide what colors to use for a logo or other project, designers often turn to the psychology of color, which refers to the feelings or ideas that certain colors tend to inspire.
Color psychology is part of the reason restaurants often use red, financial institutions often use blue and companies trying to emphasize their environmental attributes use green. Red is often associated with passion, energy and even danger, but it’s also been shown to stimulate appetite. Blue brings to mind professionalism, success, trust and calm. Green, of course, reminds us of nature but also suggests growth, freshness or money.
Know Your Audience
You’re designing your company color palette to help you connect with customers, so it’s important to keep them in mind when deciding on your brand’s look. Figuring out who your target market is, the people you most want to reach because they’re the most likely to become your best customers, is crucial for any business. It can also help you pick out brand colors.
When designing your logo and other materials, try to think about what your target audience would like. When referring to color psychology ideas, think about them from the point of view of the people you target. Different colors may mean different things to different people. In most Western cultures, for instance, yellow is usually a cheery color and is associated with summer. In Latin America, though, it’s more likely to be associated with mourning.
Do Some Browsing
If you’re not sure where to start with choosing your brand colors, you could always browse for inspiration. You could check out the color schemes of some successful brands. Maybe Coca-Cola’s red and white color scheme will speak to you. Or perhaps there’s just something about the brown and yellow of UPS that inspires you. Take a look at multiple color schemes you like and see if you notice anything that they have in common.
You could also try looking at the colors and palettes available on colourlovers.com. After you browse through colors on the site and choose one you like, it will show you similar colors and help you make a palette. It’ll also tell you the HEX, RGB and HSV codes for any color you select. Knowing this and how the color translates in CMYK and PMS are crucial to identifying a hue consistently and reproducing it later.
Analyze Your Competition
Checking out what colors your competition uses can also help you decide on yours. You might want to choose a similar palette to your competitors to help customers associate you with that industry. You also might rather do something different than others in your industry, so you stand out and are more easily recognizable. It’s up to you.
You might be more inclined to use colors more closely associated with the area you work in. For example, if you’re an environmental company, you might choose green because it commonly evokes thoughts of nature and the environment. However, if you run a video production company and all of your competitors use blue in their logos, you might want to try something different, like orange, to set yourself apart.
Follow Design Rules
There are a number proven design rules you should consider using to help you make professional-looking work. These tips and tricks can really make your logo pop, even if you’re not a professional graphic designer.
One common method is the 60/30/10 rule. This guidelines state you should use your main color in 60% of your design, your secondary color in 30% of your design and your accent color in 10%. This makes it easy to know how many colors to choose and to use them all in a balanced way.
Another common technique involves the colors you choose. Generally, choosing colors that have a similar tone go better together than those that don’t. For example, you don’t want one bright and one muted color. A talented graphic designer can sometimes make dissimilar colors look good together, but often they just look mismatched.
But Don’t Be Afraid to Be Bold
Now that we’ve gone over some basic design rules, it’s important to note these rules are meant to broken. You shouldn’t disregard them just for the sake of doing it, but if you know the right times to break them, you can end up with some truly outstanding results.
Usually experienced designers are more successful with breaking the rules, because they’re more familiar with the purpose of the guidelines. You shouldn’t be afraid to be bold and try new things, though. You don’t want your logo to look just like everyone else’s. A color scheme that stands out from the crowd for the right reasons can really take your branding to the next level.
The color scheme is one of the most recognizable aspects of a brand. It’s vital to developing a unique brand personality and connecting with customers. By following these tips, you can choose the colors for your brand that enable customers to get to know the personality of your company.