The affects of different colours on feelings, moods and emotions has been the subject of much investigation over the years particularly with artists and designers. This “how to” guide aims to explain how small business owners as well as the corporate marketer can use colours to influence consumer behaviour. One of the easiest ways to use colour to influence mood in a business setting is through printed balloons. The beauty of this marketing technique is that it is extremely cost effective, easily installed or removed and an excellent branding method for the company. Filling a small area with balloons of a specific colour can transform a space and set the tone of the mood that you desire.
The influence of colours is slightly subjective to the individual based on past experiences and personal preference but most colours have a universal meaning to all. The following interpretations are based on the meanings of colours in a Western culture.
Black – Black is a very powerful colour that is associated with stability, strength and authority. This can be used to create clarity and confidence in a message or company. However, it should be used cautiously as it’s easy to overwhelm people with too much black as it is also associated with grieving and evil.
White – White is generally associated with purity, cleanliness and neutrality. This colour can be used to create a safe and inviting environment and may also be associated with creativity in the form of a blank canvas.
Red – Red is an extremely attention grabbing colour, it draws the eye and evokes energy, movement and excitement. It has been reported that people surrounded by red find their heart beats a little faster and often feel a bit out of breath. With this in mind, red should not be overused but a small quantity can add just the right amount of energy to a room and draw attention to a desired message or product.
Orange – Orange is by far the most flamboyant colour in the spectrum and mostly associated with fun, energy and warmth. This could be the colour of choice for a company whose practices also share these qualities.
Yellow – Yellow is a very cheerful colour and as the colour of the sun it is often associated with laughter, happiness and good times. It has been found to provoke feelings of optimism as the brain releases more serotonin around the colour yellow. If used sparingly, yellow can be an excellent marketing tool for boosting sales. However, as an intense colour, it should not be overused as it is associated with flames and temper.
Blue – Blue is a very calm and restful colour which prompts feelings of dependability, wisdom and loyalty. People tend to be more productive when surrounded by the colour blue as they are more calm and focussed. However, the different tones will each set a different mood, for example a lighter sky or sea blue will evoke calmness yet darker [i]shades of blue may be associated with coldness and an uncaring message.
Purple – Purple is mostly associated with wealth, prosperity and rich sophistication. It also stimulates the brain activity used in problem solving. However, it must be used carefully and sparingly as too much purple can be seen as artificial and fake. In practice, purple should be used where the key message being communicated is one of opulence and quality.
Green – Green, like blue, is a calming colour that is often associated with nature, peace and harmony. Green can be used to create a calming and comfortable environment. However, it is also the colour associated with envy, masculinity and money which therefore sets an entirely different tone.
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