What Color is Your Marketing Parachute?

Use colors to your marketing advantage – but be sure to research the color associations of culture you’re among! June Campbell offers tips and a guide to American responses to colors.

Market researchers have had a field day identifying colors
and the likely effect they have upon us. However, the effects
of color differ among different cultures, so the attitudes and
preferences of your target audience should be a consideration
when you plan your design of any promotional materials. For
example, white is the color of death in Chinese culture, but
purple represents death in Brazil. Yellow is sacred to the
Chinese, but signifies sadness in Greece and jealousy in
France. In North America, green is typically associated with
jealousy. People from tropical countries respond most favorably
to warm colors, while people from northern climates prefer the cooler

Basically, in North American mainstream culture, the following
qualities are associated with color:

  • Red excitement, strength, sex, passion, speed, danger
  • Blue (listed as the most popular color) trust, reliability, belonging, coolness
  • Yellow warmth, sunshine, cheer, happiness
  • Orange playfulness, warmth, vibrant
  • Green nature, fresh, cool, growth, abundance
  • Purple royal, spirituality, dignity
  • Pink soft, sweet, nurture, security
  • White pure, virginal, clean, youthful, mild
  • Black sophistication, elegant, seductive, mystery
  • Gold prestige, expensive
  • Silver prestige, cold, scientificMarket researchers have also determined that color affects
    shopping habits. Impulse shoppers respond best to red-orange,
    black and royal blue. Shoppers who plan and stick to budgets
    respond best to pink, teal, light blue and navy.
    Traditionalists respond to pastels – pink, rose, sky blue.

    June Campbell is Webmaster of by Nightcats Multimedia Productions
    <http://www.nightcats.com>, a business writing site offering business writing services, a gift with subscription to business ezine, FREE business articles for use in your publications, and a FREE ebook.
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