Logo design is a complicated process, that takes into account numerous factors in order to effectively represent an organization. The selection of color within branding is no longer solely about what is visually appealing, but instead what will prompt certain emotions within your intended target market. Numerous scientific studies have analyzed the psychological effects of color, proving that certain shades cause different neurological responses within the brain. The selection of logo design color, therefore, could make or break your branding initiatives, so we have supplied you with some useful insight on selecting the perfect hues to represent your company.
Most corporate press kits include a black and white version of any logo, for use during times in which color is not available. As such, you should plan to have a version of your branding imagery that will incorporate black. In addition, it has become more commonplace for logos to be designed with monochromatic palates, as the shade implies power and sophistication. In Western society, black is also associated with villainy and death.
Blue has been known to lower heart rate, and improve mental clarity, associating the color with creativity, sincerity, and calmness. It is also one of the most commonly used colors in corporate logos, as it also suggests professionalism and success. Beware – since so few foods are naturally blue, it is seen as an unappetizing color and as such should not be used in any food-related imagery.
A color associated with nature, green is commonly used when emphasizing natural products including vegetarian, vegan and organic merchandise. This goes hand-in-hand with its connection to well-being, often linked to health and calm. Green is also commonly used in financial services as it is associated with money and growth.
Orange incites energy within the brain, making it a color of enthusiasm and excitement. Evident in its use in street signs, it is good for attracting attention to the eye. Because of its closeness to red, orange is also associated with masculinity, evoking a sense of fun and excitement.
Popular in marketing targeted at females, pink has a popular psychological association with femininity. It’s gentle and calming effect is also associated with flirtation, love, nurturing and safety.
Historically, purple has been associated with royalty. As such, we have an ingrained psychological association of purple with wealth, nobility, and luxury. Other psychological associations include wisdom, dignity, creativity and independence.
Food marketers take note – red been found to stimulate appetite, which is evident in its widespread use in restaurant and food product logos. Red also holds masculine energy and evokes feelings of confidence, determination, and ambition.
In Western societies, white is associated with purity, cleanliness, serenity and simplicity. Many Asian cultures, however, associate white with death and mourning, so limit your use if your target market resides in these areas.
As previously mentioned, you’re probably going to have a monochromatic version of your logo included in your press kit, so make sure your logo is suitable to include white.
Yellow is a cheerful color, with its warm and friendly hues often being associated with optimism and happiness. Its ability to draw attention to the human eye is also evident in its widespread use in road signs. Popular in food marketing, yellow is another color that is believed to stimulate appetite.
Check out this infographic by our friends at Towergate Insurance outlining color usage by the top 20 companies in each industry:
Conclusion: Logo Design Color
As with any aspect of branding, psychology can be used to increase the effectiveness of logo design color. Understanding your client base and your branding objectives will help you determine the colors that will be most effective in your logo design.