Color in the Marketplace

There is no question that color is a powerful communication tool that can be used most eloquently in advertising. Color informs, bringing instant comprehension, calling attention, deliver information, creating an identity and explaining the characteristics of a product or service. Above all, colors evoke emotions and these emotions must somehow connect with the essence of the product in the advertisement.

Color can be, and often is, more effective than words. If you view that last sentence somewhat skeptically, think of an advertisement on the web for a product that emanates from another country (not uncommon in the globally-connected world). You might not be able to understand the verbiage, yet the colors can tell a compelling story about what the product promises to deliver.

Viewers of an advertisement might doubt the veracity of the verbiage, but they have no reason to doubt the suggestions that the colors are making as they work on a more subtle, often subconscious level. So the powers of colorful persuasion are often subliminal and the would-be buyer, viewer or customer is not always aware they are being persuaded to buy.

Color can not only move people on an emotional level, but it is also a “moving element” that can stimulate an action or reaction, causing people to move in a desire direction. Color can also emphasize the most important features in an ad, leading the eye along a pathway that connects all of the visual elements (including words) that define the message. There is a need to be very thoughtful in the choice of colors because each family contains its own unique messages. The choice of an inappropriate color (or colors) can invite disaster in the marketplace.

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