Learning how color influences consumer behavior should be a top priority for all business owners working on branding for their business. Color choice can make or break a business, and it takes some work to determine what colors are right for you.
To get a better understanding of why color choice matters, let's take a look at the psychology of colors in marketing.
Discover How Color Influences Consumer Behavior
Do you ever make purchases without knowing much about the reputation of the company or product you’re buying? What affects your decision to pick one brand over another? Chances are good that it’s the packaging and color scheme. Although you may not consciously make your choice based on these factors, research shows that they certainly weigh heavily in consumer behavior!
How does this work? For starters, recent research found that,
“People make up their minds within 90 seconds of their initial interactions with either people or products. About 62-90 percent of the assessment is based on colors alone. So, prudent use of colors can contribute not only to differentiating products from competitors, but also to influencing moods and feelings – positively or negatively – and therefore, to attitude towards certain products.”
Color use may seem arbitrary- why would the color of packaging influence our confidence in a given product's usefulness? It turns out that people have strong associations linked to particular colors.
The following colors are typically associated with certain qualities or emotions:
- Red --excitement, strength, sex, passion, speed, danger.
- Blue -- (listed as the most popular color) trust, reliability, belonging, coolness
- Yellow --warmth, sunshine, cheer, happiness
- Orange -- playfulness, warmth, vibrant
- Green -- nature, fresh, cool, growth, abundance
- Purple --royal, spirituality, dignity
- Pink -- soft, sweet, nurture, security
- White --pure, virginal, clean, youthful, mild
- Black --sophistication, elegant, seductive, mystery
- Gold -- prestige, expensive
- Silver -- prestige, cold, scientific
Furthermore, Gregory Ciotti of HelpScout notes that additional studies have revealed that our brains prefer recognizable brands, which makes color incredibly important when creating a brand identity. It has even been suggested in Color Research & Application that it is of paramount importance for new brands to specifically target logo colors that ensure differentiation from entrenched competitors (if the competition all uses blue, you'll stand out by using purple).
Just Look at McDonalds
McDonalds offers a high profile example of branding and color-scheme in action. Their well-known red and yellow coloring were carefully chosen. For example, as we have seen in the list above, red triggers stimulation, excitement, appetite, hunger, and it attracts attention. Yellow triggers the feelings of happiness and friendliness.
You can understand how these emotional reactions would certainly useful in attracting customers. And looking at McDonald’s and other fast food restaurant’s track records, the color schemes have definitely not hurt! Furthermore, McDonald’s recent shift to incorporating green, which elicits the feelings of nature, natural and environmentally friendliness, reflects their efforts to target a more environmentally conscious generation.
How Does This Translate to Packaging?
Choosing and sticking to a strong color scheme is key. Once the choice is made, and has been confirmed through testing as a solid choice, it should be carried into its packaging as its calling card. DesignForce notes that, besides signature color, unique icons, package structure, imagery, typography and perhaps tactile packaging substrates along with a strongly placed brand mark all combine to create “ownable”, one of a kind packaging within a category. In well-executed packaging, it is this very synergy that prompts the “buy” response from consumers.
At Howard Packaging, we can help you achieve this synergy. Incorporating diverse business branding and color schemes into packaging design is what we do! Find out how we can help you by requesting a Free Catalog and Sample Kit Today.