Have you ever thought about how colour can influence how customers think about your brand and what you stand for? As a strategic branding agency, it’s something we consider all the time. Your brand promise refers to how you treat your customers, in terms of your values and the experience they can expect to receive every time they interact with you. When considering colours for your branding, it’s important to think about your brand promise and how well your chosen colours will convey this. In this blog, we outline just a few of the phases of the creative process we use to help clients with their branding.
Use a strategic branding agency to focus your brand
When it comes to brand identity, it can be tempting to launch straight in with colour ideas, but thinking more strategically about your brand is a much smarter move. Before even considering colours, there are other factors to identify in order to help focus on what your brand colours need to achieve.
Firstly, your brand goals need to be considered. What does your brand want to achieve for your customers? Do you want to make their lives easier, help them be more informed, increase their profits? How do you want their experience of dealing with you to be?
And then consider your target audience. What are they like, what makes them tick, how do you want to make them feel? Colour is closely related to emotions, so identifying the right feelings can help you work backwards to identify appropriate colours.
Finally, how do you want your customers to perceive you? Do you want to be seen as industry experts, reliable partners, quality suppliers? This should be mirrored in your brand values, and these are a great place to start when considering brand colours.
Understand the psychology of colour
Understanding the psychology of colour is vital when choosing the palette to represent your brand. Aligning your brand with the right colours can significantly impact on customers’ expectations, not just of your products and services, but of the quality of your service, your attitude and your values. In fact, research has shown that visual appearance is the most persuasive marketing factor for 92% of consumers.
For example, you might expect a high quality service from a company with a dark blue brand colour, whereas you may anticipate a calmer, more informal service from a business with pastel colours in its brand palette.
This can be explained by the psychology of colour. Think about your favourite brands and their brand colours. How do those colours influence your impression of the brand? For example, Coca Cola’s bright red matches the energy of their brand and encourages impulse buying, whereas Apple’s white-dominated palette conveys cleanness and simplicity.
We’ve previously blogged about why the colour blue dominates technology, and the same thinking can be applied to any sector or business type. As experts in technology, manufacturing and engineering, our branding process is driven by our significant experience and insight into these sectors.
The examples below show a few brands we’ve worked on, and the typical emotions associated with the colours used in their palettes.
First impressions count, and this is true when it comes to your brand. The colour is likely to be the first thing potential customers see, and they will form an instant, subconscious impression of your whole brand without knowing anything else about you.
Using this brand colour psychology, we can help identify which ones are best suited to your brand’s goals and how you want to be seen. We also consider your potential customers and their needs, and can use colour to ensure your brand subconsciously reflects their feelings so you appeal to them more.
Experiment with brand colour palettes
Different colours have different impacts, so getting the right palette for your brand is important, and is where a creative marketing agency like Motion can add significant value.
Whether you already have brand colours in mind or if you’re looking to start from scratch, we follow a tried and tested creative approach to develop your brand palette. Experimentation is key, and we evaluate a range of different options to ultimately put together three choices which hit the brief.
When putting together each colour palette we use the 60-30-10 rule, which uses three colours in the ratio of 60%, 30% and 10%. Creating a mood board is an effective way to achieve this, as placing multiple colours together makes it easier to understand which colours work well together and which combinations are the strongest.
Once the three strongest palette options have been selected, we move onto the application test, using the colours in visual mock-ups of the logo, website and other uses to see how they work for your particular brand. We try them at different sizes and in different formats to get a real feel for how well they work.
Ignore the competition at your peril
No brand can be created in isolation – its position and differentiation in the marketplace depend on understanding where it fits alongside competitors. This is true both for the nature of the business and the products or services offered, and also its visual branding.
At Motion, we use our ‘competitors circle’ to place your competitors’ logos against their relevant colour in order to understand the saturation point in the market and pinpoint opportunities. This helps us to identify the correct marketing position based directly on colour choice, and identify any gaps where the brand can visually make an impact.
The example research below was used as part of the creative branding process for a recent technology client who wanted to find a way to fit in within their marketplace and customer expectations but also stand out from their competitors.
All logos used are not owned by or associated with Motion Marketing Ltd.
When comparing your company to the competition it’s valuable to identify how you can differentiate yourself from competitors, your USP, and how you want to stand out to potential customers. How does your brand promise compare? Does your visual identity convey that? We use defined stages to guide our clients through this process to help ensure that your brand colours convey your identity and values in line with customer expectations.
If you’re looking at your branding and would benefit from the input of a strategic branding agency, contact us and our creative team will be happy to support you with our proven, in-depth branding process.