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What are Brand Colours and How to Use Your Brand Colours

Where do you find inspiration for your brand's colours, and how do you use them to build recognition? This article will discuss the significance of brand colours and offer suggestions for incorporating them into your own company's visual identity.

How Do We Define Brand Colours?

Brand colours are an integral part of any company's overall visual identity. Usually, a brand will have a set of colours, anywhere from 3-8 hues, chosen to reflect the identity of the product.

Both primary and secondary brand colours exist.

Core Branding Colours

The primary brand colours are the ones that predominate in all marketing materials. Because of how integral they are to the brand's visual identity; primary brand colours are rarely changed.

Logos are often closely identified with their primary brand colour. Coca-Cola is an excellent illustration of this. What hue did you picture when I said "Coke-Cola?"

Perhaps the colour red sprang to mind. The Coca-Cola Company uses a lot of red in their advertising because it is their key brand colour.

Secondary Brand Colours

The secondary brand colours work to enhance the primary brand colours by providing a wider range of tones to choose from. More frequently, these hues are revised to reflect shifts in marketing and strategic priorities.

If you're aiming for a younger clientele, you may, for instance, modify your secondary colour palette to reflect the most popular colours amongst that age group.

You can use your secondary brand colours on your website, social media accounts, and product packaging, but they shouldn't make up more than half of the design.

The number of brand colours you recommend for your company.

As a rule of thumb, "main" brand colours are limited to no more than three and "secondary" colours to no more than five.

When it comes to design, having a wide range of secondary colours at your disposal will allow you to be more flexible and creative, which in turn will help you stay on brand more frequently.

What weight do my chosen hues have in building my brand's identity?

Your brand's colour can be incredibly valuable, depending on your business and your specific objectives.

If you are going for an "identifier" approach with your brand, the colours you choose are crucial.

For companies that employ colour as an "identifier," such hues become integral to the brand's identity. When a brand's hue gets so closely associated with the brand itself that it is virtually inseparable from the brand itself, we say that colour has become an "identifier" for the brand.

Retailers like Target and Red, Wal-Mart and Blue, T-Mobile and Hot Pink, and Starbucks and Green are all good examples of this. Each of these corporations has made the decision to employ colour as an "identifier" in order to raise consumer awareness of their products. This tactic has proven to be effective for these businesses and has contributed to their widespread reputation.

If your market is highly volatile, brand colours are less significant.

Brand colours are not necessarily used as an "identifier" by all businesses. Using colour as a brand identifier limits a company's ability to adapt to shifting market conditions since it is tied to the specific palette that represents its product or service.

To give one example, the majority of fashion companies use just black, white, and shades of grey as their primary brand colours. These companies have adopted this tactic on purpose since they are aware of how rapidly fashions in their field can shift.

These businesses stay in a neutral palette because they place less value on their brand's colours in order to avoid being tied down to one shade or having to make frequent colour changes.

When should I reconsider my brand's colour scheme?

Brand colours are extremely delicate and should be changed with caution. The primary brand colours should virtually never be changed, and the secondary brand colours should only be modified to reflect a shift in branding priorities, such as the addition of a new target audience.

If you discover that you need to frequently update your brand colours, it may be time to revaluate your approach to branding. Learn how to get your brand in shape with our top-selling branding course, Brand Bootcamp.

You may build a solid and consistent brand identity by following these rules for brand colour management:

  • Tick up to three of your preferred brand's primary hues.

  • Pick up to 5 tertiary brand hues

  • It's important to choose a colour scheme that reflects the values and character of your company.

  • Pick hues that can be easily adjusted and will last a long time.

  • Have you settled on a colour scheme for your company?

  • Avoid drastic hue changes.

The Importance of Brand Colours

When it comes to advertising, colour is crucial. The colours you choose for your company's logo and branding materials are quite important. This is because they serve as the consumers' initial associations with your brand. The colour of your product or service may have a profound effect on how your target audience responds to it.

The colour green is associated with Starbucks, the colour yellow with McDonald's, and the colour blue with Meta. There is no part of the brand that doesn't feature these colours. The Meta website and logo are both blue, and the colour blue is prominently featured throughout the site. Green may be found all throughout a Starbucks, from the walls to the uniforms to the packaging to the website and app. It's crucial that your brand's colours remain consistent with your overall aesthetic.

Colours and Emotions

Colours have the power to set the tone for our entire day, from happy to sad to euphoric. The emotional tone of a brand is often determined by its colour scheme. Decisions can be heavily influenced by one's emotional state. Logos alone aren't enough for brands that want to make an impact on their consumers' hearts and minds; they need the help of colour. It's not so much what people perceive of a brand as how they feel about it that matters. When you add in the fact that we know different colours elicit different responses from people, the colours you choose for your brand can have a real impact on how well it does.

In addition, using the same colour(s) consistently might help build brand identification. By maintaining cohesion with your brand's colour palette, you may strengthen customer recognition of your company. One method of maintaining cohesion is to employ your brand's colours consistently across the board. Your logo, website, storefront, in-store design, staff uniforms, packaging, and marketing should all feature your brand's colours. Your brand's overall exposure will increase if you use the same colours throughout all of your marketing materials.

In light of the foregoing, it goes without saying that the hues you select for your brand's visual identity are crucial. If you know who your brand is and what it stands for, it will be easier to choose colours that reflect that.

Colour Meanings and their Effect on People


Colour Meaning

Effect on People


Passion, excitement, love danger, and anger

​Signifies importance and commands attention. Makes you feel passionate and energized


Playfulness, vatality, happiness, and friendliness

It is vigorating and envokes energy. Aggressive but balanced .Makes you feel energized and enthusiastic


Happiness, youth, energetic, comforting and optimism

Makes you feel happy and spontaneous. Can be attention grabbing or affordable. Associated with laughter, hope and sunshine


Stability, healthy, wealth, prosperity, calming, relaxing, and growth

Has a connection to nature . Makes you feel optimistic and refreshed Depicts growth security and inspires possibility

Light Blue

Tranquillity, trust, openness, calmness, spirituality, and innocence

Has a calming effect

Makes you feel safe and relaxedHas a calming effect

Makes you feel safe and relaxed

Dark Blue

Professionalism, security, and formality 

It is mature and trustworthy

Too much can make you feel cold and disengaged


Royalty, mystery, creativity, and luxury

It is wise and imaginative

Makes you feel creative

Lighter shades are used to soothe or calm


Femininity, romance, sensitivity, tenderness, sweet, cute, charming, youth, and innocence

It ranges from modern to luxurious

Makes you feel playful and romantic


Cleanliness, virtue, pure, health and simplicity

It can range from affordable to high-end

Means minimalism and simplicity


Subdued, classic, responsible, dependable, serious, mysterious, and mature

Stands for neutrality

Feels serious and professional


Rugged, aged, stability, support, warm, practical, dependable and earthy

Has an old-fashioned/vintage look or mood 

Makes you feel down to earth


Powerful, elegance, sophisticated, edgy, professionalism, simplicity, luxurious, and modern

Makes your feel sophisticated, classic and serious

Can also refer to mourning or sadness

Brand Colour Selection

There are many factors to think about while choosing brand colours. To begin, consider who you're writing for. If you want to sell more of your product, you need to know who you're selling it to, what motivates them, and what kind of emotional state they need to be in. Which shade most effectively communicates your unique selling offer to your target audience and sets you apart from the competition? If you want to choose the right colours for your company, you need to answer these questions first. You should also think about the context in which your product will be used; for example, if it will be used in the great outdoors, you might want to use colours that reflect the natural surroundings, such as green and brown for trees or blue and sand for a beach.

Also, if your business is expanding internationally, you should think about how the colours you use will be interpreted in other cultures. You need to make sure the cultural connotations of your brand's colours are consistent with those of the target market. Colours have different connotations for people of different ages, races, classes, and faiths; thus, it is crucial to research your intended audience. Once more, knowing the characteristics of your brand's identity is essential. The cornerstone of your brand colours should be the characteristics of your brand and your ideal clients.

Use this guide as a starting point when deciding on a colour scheme for your brand. We are planning on selecting three brand colours, while some colour schemes allow for as many as four. Choose a base, accent, and neutral colour when working with three colours.


When settling on a foundation, it's vital to prioritize the characteristics that best represent your brand. Choose a primary colour that communicates something about your brand's core values while also resonating with your intended consumers. This hue serves as both the brand's foundation and a reference point for selecting complementary hues.


After your primary colour, the accent colour will be used the most. Choosing this secondary colour is crucial and challenging since it needs to reflect a characteristic of your brand, work well with your primary colour, and appeal to your target demographic. Later in this essay, we will discuss colour schemes to help you narrow down your colour options.


At this point, it's time to settle on a neutral. Since you'll probably be using this shade as a background across many of your designs, you should pick one that doesn't draw too much focus to itself. The colours grey, beige, white, and off-white are the most common neutrals to use. Although black is an option, it often proves to be too dominant. However, you should do what you think is best for your brand and your target demographic.

Colour Schemes

On to colour palettes now. You should think about a colour scheme while selecting colours, since this will assist you choose an accent colour once you've settled on a primary hue (s). Monochromatic, similar, complimentary, and triadic colour schemes are all frequently used by brands. To experiment with various colour combinations, check out Adobe Colour’s online colour wheel.


Monochromatic colour schemes are useful for highlighting the significance of a single brand colour when that colour stands out as the most essential facet of the company's personality. Choosing varying tones of the same colour draws attention to that colour and, by extension, that aspect of your character.


On the colour wheel, complementary colours sit next to one another. These palettes are risk-free since the colours next to each other evoke similar feelings without being as blatant as different tones of the same hue. In most cases, a complementary or triad scheme will stand out more than an analogous one.


Colours that are complementary are those that appear beautiful when placed next to one another. Complementary colours are those that sit immediately opposite one another on the colour wheel; these contrasting hues complement one another because they are polar opposites. When designing a logo or other visual asset, using complementary colours can provide energy and excitement while also drawing attention. However, these colour combinations are quite common, so be careful not to steal too closely from another company's identity.


Colour triads are a tried-and-true method of brand recognition. Equal amounts of pigment from three distinct hues on the colour wheel are combined to form a triad. Triadic colour schemes are moderately risky like comparable colour schemes but more excitingly diverse than complimentary colour schemes. Triads, on the other hand, are challenging since all three colours must be in keeping with the brand's overall aesthetic.

Because they may appear in several touchpoints throughout the customer experience, your brand's colours are an integral part of your brand's identity. You should spend some time making sure the colours you choose for your brand are consistent across all of your marketing materials, including your website, logo, store design, commercials, packaging, and social media pages.


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