Psychological Effects Of Colors And Advertising Cultural Studies Essay

According to the Oxford Dictionary, "Color" is defined as the quality of an subject or substance regarding light shown by the thing, usually determined visually by dimension of hue, saturation and lighting of the mirrored light. Indeed, a meaning to make Einstein pleased!

However, marketers & marketers have some other explanation for color- it's a captivating changing in their strategy which makes & sells their products. Using colors continues on since centuries, prior color was significant in cultures and practices (white for a bride, black for a widow); today, from the different history; it can be used to portray various emotions such as love, lust, anger, happy, envy, melancholy, greed, mystique and so many more.

Color has been thought to increase someone's recognition of your brand by over 75%, so that it is no real surprise that a lot of companies make use of it in their advertising. They know that individuals respond to color which it evokes feelings that words and images sometimes cannot achieve. The reaction to colors, although sometimes more refined than others depending on person, is actually uniform all across contemporary society, at least within a country. From country to country there are different perceptions of color, and these need to be taken note of because merchandisers can make serious faults with color in advertising if indeed they fail to focus on what color methods to various societies and cultures.

Another interesting factor is the fact that, color is the first communication help used by people. Only humans can identify colors, which differentiate man from other pet kingdom. Both of these factors add to the need for the visual impact and impression on the human mind, which gives the product a short attraction.

Companies have found out the energy of colors and also have used it extensively. In the 60's and 70's, when color advertising was possible, companies were known because of their products, thus, identifying a product by their color.

The proverb, "A picture speaks one thousand words" was why companies travelled for press, coffee glass advertising, billboards and so many more, prior to the digital video advertisements were possible. Creativity of technology allowed color advertising- and as a result: color brought life to the advertisement- which definitely drew attention of the consumers.

As discussed earlier, color is a variable in advertising that can make the merchandise increasingly more interesting as colors have symbolism and color meanings that exceed ink. Let's have a detailed look to understand.

Colors and Their Meanings

Color is sure to play an integral role in the success of a business. In the end, it's virtually the vital thing consumers will notice, making color the best - and sometimes only - chance to obtain a message across.


Red is the most vibrant and powerful of colors since studies show that it is the first color babies recognize, and one which continues to charm to many people throughout their childhood and into their adult lives. It is the color of open fire and blood, so it's associated with energy, war, danger, strength, vitality, willpower as well as interest, desire, and love. Other than that, Red is a very emotionally strong color. It enhances human metabolism, rises respiration rate, and increases blood pressure. It includes very high awareness, which explains why stop signs or symptoms, stoplights, and flame equipment are usually decorated red. In heraldry, red can be used to indicate courage and that is why the color is found in many countrywide flags.

Red brings word and images to the foreground. It is utilized to stimulate people to make quick decisions and therefore, is a perfect color for 'Buy Now' or 'Click Here' control keys on Internet banners and websites. In advertising, red is often used to evoke erotic emotions (red lip area, red fingernails, red-light districts, 'Female in Red', etc). Red is trusted to indicate risk (high voltage indications, traffic signals).

Light red represents joy, sexuality, interest, sensitivity, and love.

Dark red is associated with vigor, willpower, rage, anger, control, courage, longing, malice, and wrath.


Although it derives from red, green has little of its big brother's forceful qualities. In fact, although it is almost always perceived as a warm and pretty upbeat color, it is, of course, popularly associated with femininity and even passivity. A cliche, perhaps, but its vigor-reducing reputation has again been shown to involve some basis in fact. Since pink does cause at least a short-term sensation of sooth makes it an effective factor in the color-coordinated method of advertising.

Its peaceful, relaxing qualities and standard evocation of comfort and softness have long made it a well liked for items such as toilet paper, silk cotton wool and 'soothing on the epidermis' toiletries, especially baby lotions. This association may be explored further as a track record or accent color for items where comfort is key area, such as pillows and comforters, sofas or carpets.

There's one other area in which pink has an interesting impact- It's popular a high amount of color in foodstuff which will lead consumers to trust they're tastier, or even identify a taste that isn't actually present, and red coloring is a particularly effective way of recommending sweetness.


Occurring naturally as an indicator of plant growth and renewal, green is one of those colors that are universally viewed as positive, fresh and fertile. It's also a color that, once more, produces apparent physical effects. It's the best color for the eye to assimilate and therefore one of the very most relaxing; it induces thoughts of calm and restfulness, and can even improve vision. In short, it's a very positive color indeed. Green, as opposed to red, means protection and thus, it is the color of free passing in road traffic.

Wholesome, healthy foods are likely to be quickly identified therefore is because of the predominant use of inexperienced, and the same can be said for products or services associated with any type of recovery, spirituality, or personal progress: yoga, slimming programs, choice medications. Dull, darker green is commonly associated with money, the financial world, banking, and Wall Street.

Dark green is associated with ambition, greed, and jealousy.

Yellow-green can indicate sickness, cowardice, discord, and jealousy.

Aqua is associated with emotional healing and protection.

Olive green is the original color of peace.


It is known as to be the colour of excellence, since considered a non-color to which nothing has been added, and therefore the white is associated with light, goodness, innocence, purity, and virginity. It is considered to be the colour of efficiency. White is associated with private hospitals, doctors, and sterility, which means you may use white to suggest safeness when promoting medical products.

White is often associated with low weight, low-fat food, and dairy products. In advertising, white is associated with coolness and sanitation because it's the color of snow. White may be used to suggest straightforwardness in high-tech products.


According to research, Brown, along with blue, is constantly voted a well liked color by men. And why not? Solid, earthy, dependable; it might lack the zing of the brighter primaries, but it resonates with a feeling of trustworthiness and dependability. An interesting off-shoot of all this earnestness is the actual fact that brown is often claimed to be a highly 'believable' color, too. Quite simply, it's more likely to add credibility to the advertising meaning - a significant factor if your communication makes statements that may appear extravagant.

Brown suggests stableness and denotes masculine attributes.

Reddish-brown is associated with harvest and show up.


Blue is the color of the sky and sea. It is associated with depth and stableness. It symbolizes trust, commitment, wisdom, confidence, cleverness, faith, truth, and heaven.

Blue is considered beneficial to the mind and body. It slows individuals metabolism and produces a relaxing impact. Blue is highly associated with tranquility and calmness. In heraldry, blue is utilized to symbolize piety and sincerity.

You may use blue to promote products and services related to cleanliness (normal water purification filters, cleaning fluids, and vodka), air and sky (airlines, international airports, and air conditioners), water and sea (sea voyages, mineral water). Instead of psychologically warm colors like red, orange, and yellowish; blue is associated with consciousness and intellect. Blue is used to suggest detail when promoting high-tech products.

According to studies, blue is a masculine and is highly accepted amongst men. Dark blue is associated with depth, expertise, and steadiness.

Light blue is associated with health, restoration, tranquility, understanding, and softness.

Dark blue represents knowledge, ability, integrity, and seriousness.


Yellow is the color of sunshine. It's associated with pleasure, joy, intellect, and energy.

Yellow produces a warming effect, arouses cheerfulness, stimulates mental activity, and produces muscle energy. Bright, pure yellow is an attention getter, which is the reason taxicabs are coated this color, or the colour of post-its. When overused, yellow may have a troubling effect; it is well known that babies cry more in yellowish rooms. Yellow is seen before other colors when put against black; this combination is often used to concern a warning. In heraldry, yellow indicates honor and loyalty. Later this is of yellow was connected with cowardice.

Use yellow to evoke pleasant, cheerful feelings. You can choose yellow to market children's products and items related to leisure. Yellow is very effective for bringing in attention, so make use of it to highlight the main elements of your design. And finally, while it's a color you can use to market most products to women - from washing up gloves to expensive scents - Men usually understand yellow as a very lighthearted, 'childish' color, so that it is not recommended to use yellow when selling esteemed, expensive products to men - no one will buy a yellowish business suit or a yellow Mercedes.

Dull (dingy) yellowish represents extreme caution, decay, sickness, and jealousy.

Light yellowish is associated with intellect, freshness, and joy.


Although in american culture the colour black certainly keeps several negative linguistic connotations (dark-colored magic, black market) it is also very favorably associated with power, prestige and exclusivity (dark tie event, dark credit card, black Mercedes).

A slightly complicated message, however in general, dark-colored can be used very effectively to denote cool sophistication and a powerful sense of extreme luxury or charge.

Pair this with the fact that visually, from the color that creates a genuine sense of depth while also focusing the attention more completely than white, and black makes a perfect backdrop for images of luxury goods or services such as high-end hotels. Men seem to respond specifically well to such a combination - perhaps because it is also been shown that for males, dark-colored is a color with proclaimed erotic overtones (incorporate it with red and you're onto a testosterone-charged winner that's bound to draw in male attention!)


With Its blend of full of energy reds and feel-good yellows, orange is a color that's plainly suggestive of fun, heat and pleasure. Orange represents enthusiasm, fascination, pleasure, creativity, determination, appeal, success, encouragement, and stimulation. And like its constituents, orange exerts an invigorating effect by increasing oxygen to the brain and rousing mental activity. It's therefore an excellent choice for just about any product associated with energy and vigor, such as sporting equipment or services, excitement holidays, theme playground rides, energy drinks.

To the human eye, orange is a very hot color, so it gives the experience of temperature. Nevertheless, orange is much less extreme as red. Orange raises oxygen source to the mind, produces an invigorating result, and stimulates mental activity. It really is highly accepted among teenagers. Being a citrus color, orange is associated with healthy food and stimulates urge for food. Orange is the color of street to redemption and harvest. In heraldry, orange is symbolic of strength and stamina. Orange has very high visibility, so you can make use of it to catch attention and high light the most important elements of your design. Orange is very effective for promoting foods and playthings.

Dark orange can mean deceit and distrust.

Red-orange corresponds to desire, erotic enthusiasm, pleasure, domination, aggression, and thirst for action.

Gold evokes the feeling of prestige. This is of platinum is illumination, knowledge, and wealth. Platinum often symbolizes high quality


Mysterious, alluring, and incredibly definitely regal, purple is a relatively unusual color in aspect. In the historical world, its scarcity recommended that it was highly respected, and rare, expensive purple dyes were used exclusively by nobility.

This connection with wealth and prestige remains even today, making crimson, especially in its darker shades, an excellent supplement to luxury items.

In truth, the association with expense is so strong it could even be used to add some instant school to cheaper products. For example, a bus company using crimson livery would almost certainly be regarded as more luxurious than one using orange. The chance here, though, is that the consumer's understanding of comparative price might also rise accordingly - even if fares are identical.

Light purple evokes affectionate and nostalgic emotions.

Dark purple evokes gloom and sad feelings. It could cause disappointment.

Psychological Ramifications of Color in Advertising

There's no doubt that colors impact the human head. So much so that some companies go to the extent to employ psychologists to get the right blend for the product or service.

For example: Notice the color used in hospitals is usually a lighter cover from the sun, thus promoting calmness and curing.

Colors have an impact on almost all aspects of our lives; each color has its qualities in the thoughts of its visitors.

Research has proved that about 60 - 70 percent of buying decisions are created at the idea of purchase. As there are so many products in the market, color is among the finest ways to get the interest of consumers. Most individuals are in an mental mind-set when they shop, in this point out they are simply more visually effected.

We have a tendency to remember longer a note paper in color rather when it just black and white.

Colors Found in Logos and Products

A Emblem is a symbol or design that symbolizes the personality of the business or business.

A custom logo has two main tasks functions, mainly to provide identification of the business and a memorable impression (good/bad) in the heads of the consumers.

Often the terms "Brand" and "Logo" are the same. A brand does not have a standard definition, but generally identifies the identity of you, company, product or service, while a company logo is a visual image of the company.

There is without a doubt it takes time, money and effort when creating them, but if done with perfection and creativity, then the end results/future would be rewarding.

Now we'll describe the basic main colors (red, green and blue) used in Logos.

Red Logos and Products:

Above are some companies which use red as their main color in their logo design. The color red is associated with blood vessels, danger, electric power and energy. In terms of emotions we would consider desire, passion and love mainly.

Research has found out that red is the 1st color that infants recognize at the time of birth. This may reminds us of the start of life, thus creating a solid recognition to the color red.

Further, studies have confirmed that the color red may cause certain physical changes in our body, specifically high blood circulation pressure and a rise inside our respiration rate.

Finally with that said, the colour red would make us feel energetic, tense, exciting, hungry, vibrant, warm, passionate and powerful.

Companies that use red in their logos and products:

ESPN the Entertainment and Activities Networking Program uses red to signify energy, power, action, excursion and liveliness.

Virgin: The Virgin group has its main businesses in entertainment, travel and lifestyle. It uses red to indicate interest and love.

Companies in the food and beverage industry (like KFC, Mc Donald, Pizza Hut, Chillys & Coco Cola) use the colour red to increase desire for foods.

Toyota a major player in the motor vehicle industry uses red to signify energy or effective action. (Dynamics)

Green Logos and Products:

The color green is created by an assortment of blue and yellowish. The word green evolved from an old English verb growan (meaning "to grow") which pertains to plants and aspect. The color green has relaxing attributes like that of the colour blue.

The color has two main results, specifically the warming and cooling down effect. It also reflects stableness and balance. However, the colour also has a poor message, as it is related to as jealousy, sickness, inexperience, envy and even the devil.

Companies that use Green in their Logos and Products:

Land Rover: An automotive company attempts to send a note of an green vehicle.

BP: Among the top players in the oil industry, also send a similar message to be environmentally friendly, the custom logo also shows a bloom, which could indicate expansion and sustainability.

Tic-tac: A favorite breathing mint company uses a green logo which implies that its product is fresh with a lasting effect.

Heineken: A Dutch making company uses the color inexperienced both in its company logo as well as its products, which transmits a message of freshness.

Starbuck: A global Caffeine and Coffeehouse supply chain runs on the darker shade of green which implies the merchandise is of superior quality yet calming.

Blue Logos and Products:

Blue is one of the primary colors, it's associated with being calm and cool. In addition, it associated with clear thinking, sanitation, care and class. It is a color which is often used in combination with almost almost any product/service aside from food.

Companies that use Blue in their Logos and Products:

Unilever: A multinational company that owns lots of the world's consumer product brands in foods, drinks, cleaning brokers and personal maintenance systems. It uses a navy blue color in its brand to signify cleverness, balance, unity, and conservatism.

Durex: A condom company, which uses two shades of blue, light blue on top signifying pleasure/fun and a darker hue of blue signifying seriousness, quality and dependability.

Intel, IBM & Dell: Will be the major companies that production hardware. They all use blue which signifies power, intellect and intricacy.

Panadol: A business who manufactures paracetamol uses blue on its logo as well as on its products as it signifies care and relaxation.

Controversies associated with Color in Advertising

Controversial advertising usually group around crucial subject areas such as faith, making love and culture. The business's (such as MTV and United Colors of Benetton) who choose to promote their product through controversial adverts try to concentrate on particular issues like, for example racism or terrorism for that matter. Even the industry for clothing and beauty products is time and again criticized for depicting a whole lot of intimate undertone in its advertising.

Few of the promoters whose products by nature are controversial such as condoms, tobacco and liquor always gets negative reactions because of their product. These sorts of products are sometimes also called unmentionables, meaning these products have a tendency to not in favor of the morality and decency of the contemporary society and people tend to behave with disgust and distaste. A controversial subject matter is often elevated in the direction of the advertiser's objective or types of approach with regards to the target market that they are looking to get in touch with.

The main problem that the Industry must tackle is the fact that many of the advertisings are related to gender, power and success fantasies. This is the part where it becomes difficult for the marketers and where the censorship factors are testing their value. Here are some types of controversial advertising.


These are a few of the many controversial adverts by United Colors of Benetton. The first add about clothing depicts a military uniform saturated in blood. This not really a typical clothing add campaign. This advertisement is focused on spark communication towards the buyer, but the problem is the fact, this advertisement is unethical and disrespectful to advertise this theme to the consumer. Many children will be discovering this advert which can make them believe that this is trendy in culture. These pictures should not be out in public and companies must not be making profit from it.

In the next advertisement, United Colors of Benetton tried out to aggravate communication on the stereotypes of good and bad where the white lady is portrayed as an angel and the African son is shown as the devil. It really is insulting to stereotype the African guy with the mane shaped like devils horn and is very unpleasant to the people observing this advert. This advert may also be labeled as a racist advert, which is bias towards white people showing that they are always the good people and superior in the society. This advertisement lacks level of sensitivity and moral ideals which it is supposed to follow.


This advertisement has caused a whole lot of controversy surrounding the world; Sony is in hot waters for that reason advert. The advertisement is actually hoping to show that there is another color model which is white, is just around the corner in the market. It implies that white looks much more superior than dark-colored. It depicts white PSP avatar is violently retaining the mouth of dark avatar. This advertisement depicts racism and dominance of the white over dark-colored. Sony has used a wrong technique to market its upcoming product.


This advert has generated a great deal of controversy one of the Catholic community. This advert shows the good looking priest has been his shirt off while the nun is submitting to the temptation. This advert is actually trying to show that the glaciers cream is so good that it's appealing the people who would never react sexually in a standard situation to behave in an incorrect way. This advert hurts the spiritual and moral values of the folks; the color african american is not depicted in the right way in this advert. This advert mocks the religion altogether. This advert is demeaning to the people in religious vocations and displaying nuns in a erotic manner is not a religiously right move to make.


In realization, color does indeed matter - 80% of visible information relates to color. We have clearly found that colors are greater than a combo of red, blue, yellowish or black. They can be method of non-verbal communication which is practical and it subliminally and overtly communicates information and provides many other functional benefits.

Organizations have learned the power of colors, the benefits of using colors correctly in the advertising or, as we have seen, by abusing the capabilities of color and facing the general public outrage. Nonetheless, organizations have used it very effectively. Companies with future products, have to take into account their marketplace, and know what emotion will appeal to the audience, and then choose the color accordingly.

Every color in the world talks to us in its own language; all we have to do is be open to what they say to us, what they make us feel. As color manipulates people's activities through the various influences in culture, whether media, skill or conversation with others, it generates a powerful pressure that becomes the foundation for living.

Also We Can Offer!

Other services that we offer

If you don’t see the necessary subject, paper type, or topic in our list of available services and examples, don’t worry! We have a number of other academic disciplines to suit the needs of anyone who visits this website looking for help.

How to ...

We made your life easier with putting together a big number of articles and guidelines on how to plan and write different types of assignments (Essay, Research Paper, Dissertation etc)