Whether you are aware of it or not, your branding colors play an important part in people’s perception of your business. The psychology of color is well established. When the time comes to choose colors for the uniforms that brand your business, do a little research into the meanings associated with various colors. Choose shades consistent with the “personality” of your business.
Red, for instance, stimulates people to think and make quick decisions. Scientifically, it is thought of as having the ability to enhance metabolism and increase blood pressure and respiratory rate. Energy drinks use the color red because it represents active energy. The association with high energy & quick decision making makes red an easy choice for workers who need to move fast and think on their feet (for example, the pit crew shirt at right). Red is a strong color, sometimes associated with danger or warnings. It grabs attention. It also stirs feelings, and can be used to suggest eroticism.
Yellow, on the other hand, induces a feeling of happiness and denotes anything bright. It also stimulates mental energy and muscle activity. Bright yellow is a good attention getter. Most taxicabs and many restaurants use this color (McDonalds and Denny’s for example). Yellow can also feel playful, or childlike.
Green is strongly associated with nature & the environment. It implies growth, fertility & freshness. It is said to have great healing power and is relaxing to the eye. Green can imply safety (as in “ok to proceed”). Green can mean “young” or “new,” so it may not be the best choice for a brand you want to position as “well-established.” Young, fresh, healthy brands look great in green!
Blue often represents tranquility, and generally has a calming effect. It’s great for conveying a dependable, trustworthy image. Light blue brings a feeling of lightness (think of the sky).
Purple has, since the days of the ancients, been a symbol of power and nobility. If your company has a theme built around the idea of treating customers like royalty, the use of purple will subtly reinforce that message. Purple also evokes an aura of fantasy and magic, so if you are organizing a fanciful event like the butterfly rescue folks pictured below did, use the color throughout your event to help set the tone & make your special occasion memorable.
Brown suggests grounded reliability and an air of sophistication and intelligence. With this in mind, UPS made a great choice for their uniforms & branding. Plus as a practical matter, dark colors hide dirt better than light ones, so if your people are likely to get a little grubby, a dark uniform color like brown helps keep them looking cleaner throughout the day.
Colors and color combinations definitely influence our thinking, so choose carefully when defining your brand. But don’t be a slave to science. If your “ideal” color turns out to be one that you hate, don’t make yourself miserable. You’re going to have to live with your brand for a long time! Pick a color you love, and go with it.
It’s much better to have some color (even if it’s “wrong”), than to have no color at all. Consistent use of color can increase recognition of your brand by up to 80% -- that’s a HUGE opportunity! And if you’re color-confounded, don’t worry! Just visit the experts at EmbroidMe San Diego. We’re happy to show samples and make recommendations.