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The Psychology of Color

The reaction to colors is both subtle and subconscious. Color choices are a form of communication—an often overlooked and underappreciated one by most advisors.

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The Psychology of Color

The Psychology of Color

Color My Practice…

It’s no secret that there is a psychology of color. People use different colors to generate different feelings; it is not by accident that many financial institutions use blue in their logo (associated with trust), or that Chanel and Dior use black (conveys elegance and power).

The reaction to colors is both subtle and subconscious. Color choices are a form of communication—an often overlooked and underappreciated one by most advisors.

What Do Your Colors Convey?

Your brand’s first impression to the public is your logo and Web site; are its colors communicating the feelings you want clients and prospects to receive? Are your communications designed with the meaning of color in mind? Is your lobby or conference room painted in a color that communicates trust or warmth?

While cultural differences, color tones and combinations may impact how a color is interpreted, colors do have a fairly universal effect.

  • Green is linked to broader and creative thinking. With its association to nature, it brings a sense of balance. Darker green is about money and prestige, while lighter green evokes nature.
  • Red elicits faster reactions and boosts energy, though short-lived, but can reduce analytical thinking.
  • Blue is the most popular color, possibly due to its more primitive connection to blue skies and water. It is calming and creates a sense of space.
  • Orange is associated with good value, fun and vibrancy. It vitalizes and inspires. Millennials have a fondness for orange.
  • Black creates mystery and secrecy. In smaller dosages it can convey a sense strength and confidence.
  • Brown is down-to-earth, stable and reliable. Men love brown due to its strength and practicality.
  • Turquoise helps calm emotions and inspires positive thoughts. It can represent clarity of thought.
  • White provides a clean look—think doctors and lab workers—and has a modern feel to it, but can become boring.

Putting Color into Practice

Advisors should consider the color of every contact with the public, from their conference room where quarterly portfolio reviews are done to their Web site and e-mail communications.

For instance, if you’re trying to attract Millennial investors, the use of orange or green may be more appealing than the traditional blue. Nothing tells Millennials that you’re not “their father’s broker” than the use of orange in presentations or e-mail communications.

Was it a particularly volatile quarter in the markets? Consider using turquoise in your market update communication to help calm the reader. Avoid red since it reduces analytical thinking!

The next time you’re ready to overhaul your Web site or repaint your lobby, make sure the color you choose is a conscious decision that communicates to clients the feelings you wish to convey.

See referenced disclosure (2) at http://blog.americanportfolios.com/disclosures/ 

About The Author

Kimberly A. Branch, CFP®

 

Vice President of Marketing Strategy 
631.439.4600, ext. 217 

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