All colors evoke distinctive responses—though often subliminally. In western culture, colors have come to depict a variety of attributes.
- Red: Vigor, courage, innovation, energy, passion, emotion, authority, strength, power; the Pantone Color Preference Study lists this as the most exciting color
- Purple: Some shades evoke playfulness and creativity, while others evoke luxury, extravagance, power and sophistication; purple is also the hardest color for the eye to discriminate
- Blue: Most popular color; professionalism, conformity, calmness
- Green: Healing, calm, peace, gentleness
- Black: Sophistication, darkness, drama
- Grey: Corporate, practical, formal, dutiful
Deep, dark shades tend to be more dignified, professional and serious. Brighter shades create excitement and can be festive and dynamic, while softer tones can be juvenile and playful.
Of course, color also takes on certain meanings based on the object with which it is associated. A red heart, for example, conveys love, while a black heart conveys treachery and a purple heart conveys courage.
Colors also take on different meanings in different cultures, too. So when selecting colors for your corporate identity or other communication materials, be mindful of all of the many attributes a color can evoke. Harness the power of color to work for your business.