How To Choose Effective Colors for a Business Logo

Making a company logo is an important part of creating your brand image. It is the company logo that the public will identify your company with. Your logo may spell out your company name, or may just be an image of an item. Sometimes, if your logo is good enough and is so well entrenched in the public mindset, it can even stand on its own. Excellent examples of these are the swoosh logo of Nike shoes, the wave design of Coca-Cola Products and the golden arches of McDonalds restaurants.

Choose a good graphic design company to conceptualize your logo. Be involved in the design process. After you have selected your chosen design, it’s time to pick the colors. Careful thought should be put into choosing the most effective colors for your business logo.

Here are few things to keep in mind.

  1. What is your company about? What kind of business are you in? Notice that certain industries work within a specific color palette. For example, most food businesses such as fast food restaurants or snack foods use red, yellow or orange or a combination of all three. These colors stand out and draw attention. Some studies even show that they stimulate appetite. You should probably avoid these colors if you have a spa since these are stimulating colors rather than relaxing ones. The colors you use in your logo should be complementary to your business. Notice that anything environmental uses the color green while a lot of products geared toward women use white, pink or purple.
  2. Limit your colors to 2 to 3 at most. Logos should be simple. Anything too busy will be too confusing to your consumer. Consult a color wheel to see which colors are complementary (colors that appear on opposite ends of the color wheel). Complementary colors help each other stand out. A perfect example is red and green.
  3. Remember that some colors denote a particular association or feeling. Some examples are yellow for energy or happiness, purple for royalty and blue for stability. If you have a motivational or events company, you may want to choose vibrant colors to express energy and enthusiasm. Financial institutions use a lot of blue to connote stability and trustworthiness. You may research online for more color associations.
  4. Compare your design and color schemes with other existing logos, especially those in the same industry. You don’t want your logo to look too similar to an existing and competing brand. This will create confusion with your customer. The point of your logo is to make your brand stand out.
  5. Keep in mind that your logo colors will be on all the marketing materials, and maybe even the walls of your office space. You can brand just about anything for company giveaways so think how the colors of your business logo will look on umbrellas, bumper stickers, mugs, shirts and pens. Don’t pick such an unusual color that it will be difficult to reprint. Imagine how McDonalds not only uses the colors red and yellow on their sign, but also on the walls, seats, floors of their restaurants and the packaging of their sandwiches. Enter a Kodak store and it is all yellow.

A good logo will stand on its own. A good graphic designer should be able to give you suggestions and guide you with your options. Choosing the right colors will help the public identify your brand better and impart the proper image and message that you want.


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