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I Spy With My Little Eye Something Red-The Impact of Colors in Marketing

We all know that colors can provoke feelings! In fact, we even use colors to describe emotions: I feel blue today. She was green with envy. But did you know that colors can lead others to make a buying decision in your business? Studies have shown that the use of color in your advertising, products, and ambience can lead your customers to make purchases.


First, you have to draw a customer in! How can colors do this? Not everyone wants to stand outside their store and wave a red flag (especially in Texas since it gets pretty hot on most days), so marketing corporations and restaurants had to come up with a more simple way. Well, let’s use McDonalds for example. We all know who they are and can all agree that they are one of the largest fast food chains in the industry. They incorporate the colors red and yellow. Now take a moment to pause and think of other restaurants who use these colors. I bet you can name a few (especially if you are hungry at the moment): KFC, Burger King, In & Out. What do these colors say to customers? This food is fast and ready to go. Red tends to trigger appetite and triggers the emotion to eat. It also stands out and catches your eye.

Red means stop, so stop in and dine here. Red exercises the call to action and symbolizes a speedy response. The yellow in the big sign we all know and love says “Look at me” and grabs your attention!! As a kid I can’t even begin to count how many times on road trips, my parents looked for that symbol from afar. Much like superman’s big S on his chest, it symbolized hope. It was the hope that food would soon be in our hands, and the hope that the smell of fries would permeate our senses until we were intoxicated by greasy happiness! So the message at fast food chains are “We have your attention, stop, get in, get out and have a great day!” Well played fast food chain marketing geniuses. Well played!

cafe sign

Now lets take the use of blue in advertising. I’m sure one of the first logos you thought of was Facebook! What draws you to facebook, besides the 100’s of photos of grandma on her motorcycle or the endless memes that keep us entertained during our lunch breaks? Blue stands for recognition and trust. You see Facebook and think, “Wow I can trust them!” or “Hey everyone knows these guys. Let’s share endless photos of the meal I had for lunch.”

Let’s think of why the color blue being used to is important with businesses and advertisement. Allstate is a good example. When you look at their logo, the word trust needs to come to mind in order for you to want to stop in and sit for a while. Insurance can be quite costly depending on your needs so telling your customers to stay and trust you to handle their most valuable possessions is important. If Allstate chose yellow for example, you might think “Take precautions! Take heed! Slow down! Look out!” Those would NOT be what you would want a customer to think in any way shape or form!

So now you see the importance of color in advertising especially in regards to marketing, but as a business owner, manager or even employee, how can this apply to you when dealing with clients or customers? You’ve got them in the door, how do we keep them in their seats and happy for a little while longer. Let’s say you own a wonderful little coffee shop and you spend your time checking on customers for the first part of the day. If you are wearing a bold red shirt or something extremely bright, imagine what Mr.Joe Customer or Ms Nancy Relaxalots is thinking when you show up at their table with a LOOK AT ME T-shirt! They aren’t there to look at you. No offense. Maybe you are quite attractive and peacocking is your thing, but I digress! They are there to relax, socialize or just enjoy a calming cup of caffeine to settle their nerves to start the day. Neutral colors or even calming colors with a hint of blue can tell a customer “I can trust you. I feel calm that you are here.”

As a manager or employee, your goal at that point isn’t to stand out per se, but to blend in a bit, give comfort and reassurance to your customers, then to fade back out to let everyone enjoy their experience. Remember, when we go to a restaurant to eat, we are there for the experience, otherwise we would all just be sitting at home eating with our favorite Netflix show on in the background and our animals staring us down until we feed them just a tiny morsel. Statistics show that an average customer spends 15-30 minutes in a coffee shop. This, of course, increases in coffee shops that present a relaxing and welcoming environment. As a restaurant manager you want people to stay for a while. Maybe they will enjoy a second cup of java, or maybe they will even have a dessert!


I think the point has been made that, indeed, colors can sway our decisions even before we realize that a decision is being made! Now I’m betting that when a sign catches your eye or you sit down to dine, you will be even more aware of the colors around you and see them in a different light! Thank you for reading and hope we have been helpful in the adventure you are having today! Tune in for more articles from! Be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to see our latest happenings! SHARE if you know someone who could benefit from this information as well!





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