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Branding: How Your Brand Colors Impact Sales

Branding: How Your Brand Colors Impact Sales

The colors you choose for your branding have a direct impact on your sales.

You’ve got a killer new logo. Your website was just redesigned. But, you’re still not getting the leads you need or expected.

You’re pretty disappointed. You thought spending the time and money for new branding collateral was going to take your business to the next level.

But, what’s missing is the theory and strategy behind it all. Just because you have a logo design and a website, doesn’t mean that your branding is done or even there.

There are several elements that go into branding. One of the most crucial, and often overlooked aspects of branding is color theory.

What is color theory?

What color theory boils down to is a way to logically structure and organize colors.

Color theory is a way to organize colors.

There’s enough information out there to fill an entire bookshelf with notes, thoughts, and insights on color theory. But, really, there are three things you need to know:

1. The Color Wheel- This is a throwback to your elementary school art class. There are three primary colors: Red, Yellow, and Blue. These three colors can’t be made by mixing any other color.

That’s right. You read that correctly.

These colors are the true originals.

Also, every other color you can think of is made from these three hues.

Secondary colors are made by mixing the primary colors and tertiary colors are made by mixing a primary and secondary color.

2. Color Harmony- Think about your favorite song. Can you hear the vocals melding with the sweet guitar riff? Harmony happens when different elements start blending in a pleasing way.

When it comes to branding colors, harmony means it’s pleasing to the eye. You want your brand colors to create a sense of order and balance. If there isn’t harmony between your brand colors, then it might come off as boring, outdated, or chaotic.  

But, you have to be careful because if your colors create too much harmony, things like your logo will start blending into other design elements.

Color harmony can be created by using specific color combinations:

  • Analogous colors: these colors are right next to each other on the color wheel.
  • Complementary colors: these colors are directly opposite each other on the color wheel.
  • Triadic colors: these colors are evenly spaced around the color wheel.
  • Split complementary colors: these colors start with a base color and use the adjacent colors to the complementary color.
  • Rectangle colors: these colors form two complementary pairs on the color wheel. (When a line is drawn between them, it creates a rectangle.)
  • Square colors: these colors are similar to the rectangle colors, but they are evenly spaced around the color wheel to form a square.

3. Color Context- This is the most complicated component of color theory, and could be why your brand colors aren’t helping you generate leads you expected. Depending on the colors you use and the shapes in your logo, people could be getting the wrong message.

Believe it or not, colors change in relation to the other colors and shapes around them, which means the beautiful fuchsia color you picked out could look completely different on your logo, website, and any other marketing material you use it on than you expected or wanted it to.

So how do you know you’ve chosen the right colors?

Choosing the right colors

Choosing your brand’s colors isn’t as simple as going through your daughter’s colored pencil box and picking out your three favorite.

Choosing the right brand colors can make or break your sales process.

Why?

Because every color has a meaning. You may not think about it, but color psychology plays a major role in branding.

That means the red in your logo could be symbolizing passion or energy.

The yellow in your logo could be symbolizing joy or intellect.

The blue in your logo could be symbolizing wisdom or trust.

These are things you have to consider when choosing brand colors because you don’t want potential customers to get the wrong message.

If your brand is all about selling financial services, then you might want to use blue in your logo because for many consumers it says that you’re a trustworthy and wise company.

Branding colors impact on sales

That’s great and all. Colors have meaning, yada, yada, yada…Choosing your brand's colors is about more than just selecting the ones you like.

But, how are those colors impacting your sales? Depending on your brand colors, the message you are sending to leads could be completely wrong. When choosing colors for your brand, there are a couple of things you need to think about:

  1. Color harmony: We talked about this earlier too. You have to get the right balance when it comes to color harmony. Lack of harmony leads to confusion and chaos. I.e. no one understands your logo or brand. Too much harmony leads to your brand being lost. I.e. no one notices your logo or brand.
  2. Number of colors: Similar to color harmony, you need to choose the right number of colors. What does a single color say? It says simple and elegant. Or, it could say out-dated and confused. What do multiple colors say? They say diversity in location, products, or services. Or, they say chaos and indecisiveness. It’s really all about how the colors play with one another.
  3. Cultural impact: Often overlooked, colors have varied meanings from culture to culture. If your company has a global footprint, then you need to make sure your colors are delivering the right message across cultures and across the globe.
  4. Color emphasis: Remember that too much emphasis on the color can distract from your overall brand. Bright and bold colors can be too loud. Dull and muted colors can be too quiet.

When it comes to your brand’s colors it’s all about balance and getting your message across. If the balance is off or if your brand colors tell a different story than what you want to be telling, then you’ll have some issues with your sales. If potential customers don’t understand what your message is or if they’re confused about what you are offering, they’ll turn to one of your competitors.  
Is your logo sending the wrong message and hurting your sales? Use our Logo Checklist to create an impactful logo, critique your current logo, and figure out just how well your logo is working.

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Carolyn Byard

Carolyn is Iconic's art director and office dog handler. She strives to build unicorns, and she is completely obsessed with the fusion of beautiful design with strong strategy for unforgettable user interfaces.