Friday, November 8, 2013

What is Semiotics, and how can choosing a colour for your brand have more effect than just a nice appearance?

Semiotics is to do with how we interpret things. We are constantly interpreting shapes, colours, Buildings and sounds. Colour semiotics can be analysed and then used to provoke consumer feelings and behaviour. 

Colour has an effect on us all on a subconscious level, due to our associations that we develop at such a young age. Colour can affect our mood and feelings toward something. This is why it can be used so effectively in branding and advertising. To brand a company effectively, the company logo and colours for the graphics standard manual should be considered carefully.

So what colours do what?

Warm colours such as oranges and reds can provoke stronger and more passionate feelings such as anger or warmth, whereas cool colours like blues can encourage feelings of apathy or sadness.

Take for example carmine red. Carmine Red is known to activate your pituary gland. Red also activates your heartrate to make you feel more excited, aggressive, and proactive. Red provokes a very strong and fervent response. This is why red is often used as a danger sign.

Because red creates such a strong effect, if used well it can be a particularly effective marketing tool.

Take coca-cola for example. Coca-cola is one of the largest global brands and is a great example of a good use of colour.
Because carmine red incites excitement it encourages you to have anticipation and strong expectations around the brand. Red also is such a bold and daring colour.

However culture has a very large impact on semiotics. Having grown up in a western society I have learnt that red is danger, blood and death. We learn these associations through the country we grow up in and the similar views of people around us, however if you travel to another country you may find that colors symbolize something very different. 
In china red is used to symbolise power

In china red is used liberally and is associated with power and being rich.

Semiotics is very much down to personal interpretation. 
People are drawn to certain colours because they may respond well to that colour. Someone with a very busy lifestyle may pick blue as a colour they like because they find some peace and calm in it. Because of this, semiotics is used widely in the interior design industry.

Despite not realizing day to day, we are always interpreting colour. Colour will play a huge part in how much someone will trust a company, how fun or serious they perceive a company, how attached to it they may feel.

Need a Logo designed? Feel free to visit our website to get in contact!

The colour and shape of these logos have all been carefully selected to portray a style appealing to potential customers

Blog by Alice Parlett

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