Home Business & Industry What Happens When the UK’s Leading Brands Change Their Logo Colour?

What Happens When the UK’s Leading Brands Change Their Logo Colour?

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Colour has a massive impact on a product’s first impression, with 90% of a consumer’s initial assessment of a product being based on colour alone. There are subconscious ways that colours can make consumers think, feel and behave.

ICON Printing has teamed up with colour psychology expert Karen Haller to reveal how important colour is in branding. By switching the colours to their opposites on the colour wheel, the true power of colour has been revealed.

Alex Econs, merchandise expert and founder of ICON Printing, said: “If you can establish which colours convey your brand’s message best, it is possible to create a brand logo that truly engages your consumer whilst also, on a practical level, standing out in the market.”

Taking the UK’s leading brands and switching the logos to the opposite colours on the colour wheel, Karen has revealed the effect this might have on the consumer.

Alex said: “Colours can have incredibly powerful effects on consumers, and even the slightest change can influence our emotions regarding a product. By simply switching the original logo colours to their opposites on the colour wheel, we can see how colour can impact how consumers feel about the brand as a whole.”

Cadbury – Affordable luxury to an optimistic treat

  • Original logo colour effects – luxury, authenticity, quality

  • Opposite logo colour effects – optimism, friendliness, creativity

If Cadbury changed its branding to bright yellow, it would instantly lose brand recognition. Its marketing message would no longer be about affordable luxury; instead, it would focus on Yellow’s positive psychological traits, uplifting and happy.

Royal Mail – Eye-catching icon to indistinguishable

  • Original logo colour effects – strength, stimulation, excitement

  • Opposite logo colour effects – optimism, friendliness, creativity

If Royal Mail went back to green – even with a bright, vivid green, while better than the dark green of the 1800s, it would still be difficult to spot and lose its iconic presence and status.

IKEA – Everyday function to childish playfulness

  • Original logo colour effects – efficiency, trust, friendliness

  • Opposite logo colour effects – abundance, fun

Change the brand from yellow to orange, shifting the focus to fun and play. There would be a sense the brand was more child-focused, making it appealing to families with young children, but it might alienate their core age group.

John Lewis – Sophisticated elegance and exceptional quality

  • Original logo colour effects – efficiency, simplicity, sophistication

  • Opposite logo colour effects – sophistication, glamour, substance

From a colour psychology perspective, brands that use black convey they are sophisticated, elegant and classy. They are innovative and see themselves as an industry leader.  Think Black American Express, Chanel and Cartier- aspirational with an air of exclusivity.

Netflix – Serial excitement to natural Zen

  • Original logo colour effects – anticipation, stimulation, excitement

  • Opposite logo colour effects – rest, peace, nature

If Netflix changed its brand colour to green, we would lose that sense of anticipation and excitement. Instead, we’re encouraged to relax and unwind among the trees, like we feel when out in nature.

Boots – Knowledgeable care to playful frivolity

  • Original logo colour effects – knowledge, logic, trust

  • Opposite logo colour effects – fun, frivolity

If Boots were to change their core brand colour to orange, we would see them as fun and playful, not really what you want from your chemist when you need professional advice. Depending on the amount of orange they used, we might even feel the adverse effects of orange and see them as being frivolous, which is not what we want from a chemist.

Cathedral City – Indulgent treat to diet option

  • Original logo colour effects – indulgent, masculinity, regal

  • Opposite logo colour effects – eye-catching, poisonous, low-fat

If Cathedral City were to change their brand colour to all blue, we would make the initial assumption that all its products were now in their ‘lighter’ range, potentially losing customers who were looking for a full-fat rich cheese.

Visa – Dependable service to unattainable opulence

  • Original logo colour effects – knowledge, reliability, trust

  • Opposite logo colour effects – prestige, desirability, exclusivity

If Visa switched to just using gold, that sense of accessibility and the notion of their ‘every-person’ card is gone. Gold branding gives the impression of prestige, desirability and exclusivity. It’s creating the illusion this brand is now unattainable for their core target market.

Samsung – Trustworthy communications to premium exclusivity

  • Original logo colour effects – reliability, communication, trust

  • Opposite logo colour effects – aspirational, exclusivity, desirability

If Samsung changed its brand colour to gold, it would look far more premium or a high-end product. Gold creates an air of exclusivity, so Samsung becomes an aspirational brand and no longer a brand for everyone.

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