‘Why That Colour?’

Colour Psychology Is Rad

Becky Boughton
Sep 10, 2020 · 2 min read

As humans, we can see a total of about 10 million colours.

There are the primary colours of blue, yellow and red, the secondary colours of green, purple and orange then there is every shade, tone and hue in between.

We use colour is to express our individuality, our personal style, our creativeness, our mood, our culture, our likes and our dislikes.

In business, entire marketing teams are dedicated to the concept of colour psychology and what that means for a particular brand or product.

Have you paid particular attention as to how a certain colour affects your emotional response or reaction to an advertisement? It’s interesting and rad how something as simple as the colour green can have the powerful impact it does.

Here is the general gist of the primary and secondary colours and how they affect our psyche in regards to our business choices, personal purchases, clothing styles and even our relationships:

  • BLUE: Trust, dependability, loyalty, responsible. Also associated with rigidity, come across as cold...off-putting, unforgiving.

Companies who use blue are finance/security (VISA, Bank Of America, American Express) and transportation (Boeing, GM, Ford).

  • YELLOW: Intellect, mindful, happiness, hope. Also can mean being critical toward others, cause anxiety.

Businesses that use yellow are food (Subway, McDonalds, Lays) or those who offer bargains (Best Buy, IKEA).

  • RED: Energetic, risk-taking, love, strength. Can also be related to aggression or a demanding nature.

In business red is often used in the media industry (ESPN and CNN) or things action-related (RedBull).

  • GREEN: Nature, harmony, growth, money, nurturing. Can also suggest being envious, inexperienced, greedy.

Popular businesses that use greed logos are banks (TD) and companies that relate to the environment or health (Whole Foods, Woolworths, Green Giant).

  • PURPLE: Luxury, imagination, spirituality, royalty, mystery. Also can be related to distraction, too much introspection, can aggravate depression in some people.

Commonly seen with treat manufacturing companies (Cadbury’s, Willy Wonka, Crown Royal) and subtly marketed more towards women (Babies R Us, Lady Speed Stick).

  • ORANGE: Sporty, warmth, abundance, fun, food. Can also suggest immaturity or pessimism.

In business, orange is commonly used for fitness companies (Orange Theory) or food (Dunkin’ Donuts and Fanta).

What’s your favourite colour?


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Becky Boughton

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Becky Boughton

Written by

The Startup

Get smarter at building your thing. Follow to join The Startup’s +8 million monthly readers & +787K followers.

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