Brand Colours: How to Choose the Right Colours for Your Brand

Your brand colours help establish your brand identity, which is what sets you apart from the competition. Whether you’re launching a new brand or refreshing an existing one, it’s important to choose the right color combo.

Photo by Ricardo Gomez Angel on Unsplash

Certain colors and color combinations can elicit emotional responses from your target audience and influence how they react to your brand. That’s why it’s so key to choose the right color combinations that evoke the kind of reaction you want associated with your brand identity. 

Why Do Brand Colours Matter?

Research shows that color instantly communicates key information about your brand and what it offers to your target audience. 

What’s more, brand colours help establish your brand’s “personality traits.” Just think about the elegant shade of blue that has come to be synonymous with the jewelry brand Tiffany. Or the vibrant red of Coca-Cola. In both cases, the brand color is a visual shorthand that expresses what the brand is about. 

The use of brand colors can also go terribly wrong. Consider what happened to Seattle’s Best Coffee when it decided to rebrand, changing the primary color in its logo from a rich, coffee brown to a bright red. People started mistaking their cafes for blood donation centers. 

How to Use Color Psychology to Your Benefit

If you’re familiar with color theory, then you know that different colors (and even different hues of the same color) have different connotations. 

Here are some of the most popular branding colors and what they say about a brand. 

Red – Red vibrates with energy and is youthful and lively. 

Orange – Orange has a vibrant, fresh feeling. It’s also linked with creativity and innovation. 

Yellow – As the color of sunshine, yellow exudes playfulness and optimism. 

Green – Green has an earthy quality, so it’s often linked with sustainability. 

Light Blue – Light blue speaks of trust and tranquility, so it’s no wonder that tech companies like Twitter and LinkedIn use it as their main brand color.

Dark Blue – Dark blue communicates reliability and steadfastness.

Purple – Purple is associated with royalty and carries an aspect of prestige and mystery. 

Pink – Pink is soft, romantic, and feminine. 

Gray/White – As neutral colors, gray and white have a calming effect that is also elegant and authoritative. 

Brown – Brown is the color of earth, communicating wholesomeness and honesty. 

Black – Black elicits feelings of luxury and sophistication as well as formality and tradition. 

Choosing Your Brand Colours

Here are a few things to consider when choosing brand colours that will connect with your target audience. 

Base Color, Accent Color, And Neutral Color

Branding is typically based on three building blocks: a base color, an accent color, and a neutral color. 

Your base color should be the first color you select, as it’s the centerpiece of your branding, reflecting the personality traits of your business and evoking the desired emotions from your potential clients. 

The next color to decide upon is your accent color, which should be visually cohesive with your base color and also resonate emotionally with your target audience. 

Last is your neutral color. This functions as a background and shouldn’t detract visually from the main design. Tints of grays, whites, and beiges are popular choices. 

Make Sure Your Colors Look Good Together

When putting together your “big three” of base, accent, and neutral colors, you’ll want to make sure they create color schemes that play well together. A color wheel can help determine which color combinations work and which don’t. 

Complementary colors, which are opposite each other on the color wheel, create a striking, eye-catching color palette. 

Analogous colors sit side-by-side on the color wheel and evoke similar emotions. They tend to blend into each other for a subtle effect. 

Triadic colors pull from three areas of the color wheel to create a color palette. If you go this route, be sure to make your base color the focus since it’s the color that most powerfully communicates your brand’s personality. 

Building Brand Recognition Through Your Brand Colours

Brand colors are a crucial part of building recognition for your brand. 

Consistency Is Key

New brands, in particular, need to make a strong, consistent impression. One way to build brand recognition is to use the same color scheme on everything, from your logo design to your website, even down to the t-shirts your employees wear.

Make Sure Your Colors Match Your Brand’s Personality

Remember that effective brand colors are ones that are in harmony with the brand’s personality and its offerings. 

Think about top brands, such as Starbucks, Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, and Netflix. They all use bright, bold colors to such spectacular effect that those colors have become synonymous with the brands themselves. 

Color Branding Mistakes to Avoid

Here are common mistakes to look out for when choosing the color scheme for your own brand. 

Not researching the competition – The last thing you want to do is select brand colors that are identical to your competitor’s. Your color scheme should be uniquely your own.

Prioritizing your own preferences – You may be tempted to pick your brand color based on what “feels right” to you. Don’t do this. Your personal likes and dislikes don’t matter here—your potential customers’ do.

Using non-related brands as inspiration – You may love Apple’s minimalist branding, but it’s not the best reference if you’re launching an eco-friendly beauty brand, for example. Think about the colors that will resonate most with your target audience and how you can use them effectively. 

Printing Your Marketing Materials

Your brand colors can make or break the success of your business. Make sure your marketing materials show your brand’s “true colors” in the best possible light. 

Banana Print is an online digital printing service that lets you print high-quality marketing materials quickly and affordably. From business cards to button badges and everything in between, Banana Print is your one-stop shop for quick and low-cost printing. 

Posted in