The psychology of color is an interesting and complex topic. Certain colors give off different vibes and make people feel certain ways. For instance, yellow is considered the happiest color in the spectrum. It gives a feeling of energy, optimism, and joy. Where people get these impressions of color is based off past experiences, their culture, childhood, and even personal preferences. The psychology of color is an unconscious phenomenon. Color can influence more than the way we think, but even how we feel about a brand.
A brand’s color says a lot about the company. Typically, a logo is the second impression someone has of a company. The company’s name being first. Within the logo can be words, a picture, and of course colors. Those colors are influential. Most companies in the financial, medical or tech industries have blue, or have a dominant shade or tone of blue in their logo. This isn’t accidental or because everyone else is doing it. Blue establishes a sense of strength, wisdom, trust, and loyalty. All characteristics everyone wants from their bank, doctor, and the people handling their personal data. A color’s ability to influence stretches beyond first impressions, it can also be used to change consumers’ minds about a well established brand.
In 1993, Jack in the Box had a terrible E. coli outbreak that affected over 70 restaurants along the west coast. Children were the majority of the victims. The deaths and permanent injuries made national news. Jack in the Box looked to be on the verge of closing. However, Jack in the Box did a simple rebranding with the color white. They changed the color of their bags, introduced white wraps and counter tops in all their ads, and did everything they could to make their food preparation and handling look clean. Some believe the return of Jack in 1994 is what saved the brand. It probably helped, but the branding around white, a color that invokes goodness, innocence, and purity, did most of the leg work.
The color wheel is as diverse as the feelings we can experience. With different levels of sound, tone, and shade, you can potentially manipulate a color to give the exact impression you want to make. Here are the basic colors and the emotions they can convey.