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Color: Psychology vs. Perception

Color is a crucial part of brand communication. Colors bring emotions to brands, making their stories interesting and worth the watch. The incredible power of colors is evident everywhere - It is McDonald's obvious Yellow 'M' that makes the outlets stand out from miles away. Ever noticed how Macy's Red invites you every time you pass by a store? And how can we skip Purple that has been associated with Cadbury over a century. Colors make a brand iconic. They connect them with their audience through perception and psychology.

Lets learn the mechanics of our mind and how it perceives different colors based on our psychological biases. And how brands can play color theory right to get the best on board.

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Color: Psychology vs. Perception

  1. Color: Psychology vs. Perception
  2. Colors…
  3. Colors tell the story.
  4. Ever noticed how movies use color palettes to create visual cues? Let's checkout few examples...
  5. The Matrix: Real World vs. Into the Matrix
  6. The Oz: Real World vs. The World of Oz
  7. The Sixth Sense: Real World vs. Contaminated World
  8. The Avatar: Real World vs. Pandora
  9. This is no happenstance. Neither movies are the only genre that use color to tell the story.
  10. Colors feature a fantastic ability to tell stories and infer emotions.
  11. Colors can influence our mind and thinking.
  12. But do you know how? Colors affect and shape our perceptions in two ways: Embodied Meaning and Referential Meaning.
  13. 1. Embodied Meaning: Embodied Meaning is inherently inside something and doesn’t rely on our emotions or experiences to have meaning.
  14. 1. Embodied Meaning Examples
  15. 1. Referential Meaning: Referential meaning is dependant on the network of associations activated when we are exposed to the stimulus.
  16. Empirical studies show that there is no one universal meaning for a color i.e. there are no intrinsic or embodied meaning. Only meaning that exist is referential or based on our perceptive data.
  17. Let’s checkout some examples…
  18. Wisdom is purple in Japan and India, Blue in Eastern Europe and White in Native America.
  19. Love is Green in India, Red in Eastern Europe, Red in Western America and Yellow in Native America..
  20. Mourning is White in China, Yellow in Eastern Europe, Black in Western America and Purple in South America..
  21. Peace is White in China, Yellow in Eastern Europe, Blue in Western America and Silver in South America..
  22. Hence, our sentiments or feelings for colors come from: Our own perception, Culture we are raised in and past experience.
  23. In essence, some colors can influence the way we act. But there’s no WAY TO TELL HOW A COLOR WILL effect when each person’s associations are different. THERE's
  24. Research says, the relationship between brands and color hinges on the perceived appropriateness of the color being used for the brand.
  25. Lets see how some popular brands nailed their colors... Lets see how some popular brands nailed their logo colors…
  26. Apple’s Logo: Clean. Minimalist. Simple.
  27. Barbie’s Logo: Beauty, joy and smile.
  28. Fanta's Logo: Cheerful. Fun. Warmth.
  29. BP's Logo: Natural. Soothing. Growth.
  30. McDonalds’ Logo: Appetizing. Happy. Vibrant
  31. The Crux: Color is your chance to create your own brand story and symbolic meaning. Because color do have power to effect the way people respond to a brand's message.
  32. Fact Check: 62-90% of snap judgements about products can be based on the color alone.
  33. COLOR SELECTION GUIDE: How to find a color that makes your brand standout...
  34. Step 1: Choose a color – Ask yourself what color brings up the associations you want with your brand?
  35. Step 2: Learn Color Theory – Get acquainted with color science to find the perfect combo for your primary color.
  36. Step 3: Make Highlights Pop– According to the Isolation Effect elements that stick out are remembered more clearly. Use auxiliary colors to make your CTAs standout.
  37. Step 4: Compliment Colors with content – Give meaning to your colors, leverage it through content. Just like blue signified PANDORA in Avatar. Set rules and guidelines for color usage.
  38. That’s it. Connect with me at @AyeshaAmbreen.