A beginners guide to choosing your brand colour palette

Though there are many factors that can influence a potential customer, your choice of colours for your brand can have a positive and powerful psychological influence on the customer, if done right.

A study by KISSmetrics suggests that, when it comes to product purchasing decisions, almost 85% of shoppers base their decisions on colour.

Humans, by nature, tend to be visually-driven. Everything we do is largely influenced by a visual stimulus. So, why would it be any different in the digital world?

Good colour choices are consciously planned.

If you look at some of the world’s biggest brands, most of them follow a distinct colour pattern. It plays a very crucial part in establishing their brand identity.

Take for example the brands, Pepsi and Coca-cola. Even though the two products tastes (arguably) the same, the difference in colour and design between the two products, marks them apart.

If they looked the same, there wouldn’t have been any competition.

Studies show that your brand recognition is enhanced by over 80% from the colour you choose. It builds trust, thus creating long-term brand advocates.

So, choose the colours that reflect its significance for your brand and the type of crowd you want to attract.

Understanding the colour wheel

To a non-designer, the anatomy of colour(s) can appear technical and daunting but will help you to understand the basics.

Colour wheel

Colour harmony

Colour harmony in colour theory refers to the colour combinations that are aesthetically pleasing to the human eye. The easiest way to pick colour harmonies is by applying the different colour principles (like analogous, complementary, monochromatic or triad) to the colour wheel.

Colour models

Learning the names or codes of all the colours is impossible, for obvious reasons. Hence, we use the colour models.

The RGB model

The primary colours on the colour spectrum (red, green and blue) are referred to as RGB and are best for digital displays. It can be used for projects like web and app design, branding, social media and other visual contents including infographics, video, digital graphics and so on. The best file formats for RGB are be JPEG, PSD, PNG and GIF.

The CMYK model

CMYK stands for Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Key/Black is ideal for printing. A printing machine works by creating images by mixing CMYK colours to match varying degrees of colours using physical ink.CMYK’s best use is to design projects like business cards, signs, posters, flyers, brochures, clothing merchandise, product packaging or restaurant menus. The ideal file formats for CMYK will be PDF, AI and EPS.

Click here to learn about the psychology of colours in branding.

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