How to Choose Brand Colors to Represent Your Business

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When it comes to branding your business you must carefully consider your target market. Do you sell primarily to women or men? The answer to this question will heavily impact your branding strategy. Additionally, what age group are you primarily selling to: children, teenagers, young adults, middle age or senior customers?

The reason it is important to ask yourself these questions before you start designing your brand elements is that different genders and age groups respond to colors and shapes differently.

Color Preferences by Gender & Age

A study conducted in 2003 shows that blue is the preferred color for men and women; however, women also respond well to purple and to a less extent green, while men respond okay to green but do not like purple at all (it is one of their least favorite colors).

Additionally, women list orange as their least favorite color while men dislike brown.  And both males and females find orange and yellow to be “cheap” colors.

Another study on color preferences conducted in 2007 found that:

  • Women prefer soft colors while men prefer bright colors
  • Men tolerate achromatic (shades of black, white and grey) colors more than women
  • Men prefer shades (colors with black added)
  • Women prefer tints (colors white white added)

Shades tend to be viewed as “deep, powerful and mysterious” while tints are viewed as “soft, youthful and soothing.”

Also of importance is that while adults prefer blue over other colors, research shows that children tend to prefer red.

Marcel Zentner, who conducted the study “speculates that adults may have learned to associate red with negative things such as blood and poison, and so that is why the preference shifts from childhood to adulthood.”

If your business sells children’s items you should keep red in mind to incorporate in places of your site; however, because adults will be doing the purchasing you may want to strongly consider blue as one of your brand colors.

Selecting & Incorporating Your Brand Colors

Why is it important to designate specific colors to represent your brand (aka Brand Colors)? It’s vital so that your company has a cohesive look and feel across all of your properties (website, social media sites, emails, business cards, conference displays and so on) – a cohesive look and feel makes your brand memorable and gives it an identity.

Imagine if Coca-Cola used different colors on its cans, bottles, website, social media properties, etc. If that happened you wouldn’t see a red can and automatically know that it’s a Coca-Cola can – it might be any brand.

Designating specific colors for your company helps you create that same memorable effect.

Selecting brand colors that will resonate well with your audience is the key first step to creating a brand for your business – so don’t forget to consider the research presented above.

You’ll want to use these colors to design the following things right away:

It’s best to use one designer to create all of these elements to ensure cohesion of your brand identity.

How did you select the colors for your brand? Did you use research? Select your favorite colors? Leave a comment below.