Colorful Psychology

I’m in the process of painting several rooms in my home. Over the weekend, I watched my spare bedroom transform from an inconspicuous green to a spirited red. What used to be a relaxing bedroom is now a vibrant home office. I’m intrigued how color can affect your state of mind, since studies show that it can actually change the way you feel. As I was settling on paint color, I became curious about the psychology of my choice and how I could use color to invoke similar feelings with my members:

{Red} The color of energy, action and passion. Red is the most emotionally intense of all the colors. Studies show that red can actually raise your blood pressure and cause you to take action. I wonder if putting phone numbers, websites and other calls to action in red helps response rates.

{Blue} The color of peace and harmony. Blue invokes trust and confidence as the ultimate power color. Â It’s also the best selling and most universally accepted of all colors. Blue can actually make you appear more trustworthy, so kudos to the NCUA for picking the perfect color for their logo. (BTW, blue also decreases appetite, so I may have to paint my refrigerator.)

{Green} The color of wealth and luck. It is also the easiest color for eyes to absorb. For this reason, green instantly puts people at ease and has an emotional connection to safety and growth much like blue. Now I understand why so many financial institution logos are green or blue.

{Purple} The color of enlightenment, independence and creativity. It combines the stability of blue with the energy of red. There is a gender bias with purple so it should be used with discretion. Also, studies show that the majority of children choose purple as a favorite color so it’s a great color to connect with kids.

{Brown} The color of stability and and tradition. It shows credibility and brings you down to Earth. You can use brown to convey warmth, honesty and wholesomeness. I suppose it was no coincidence that Grampa’s old chair was brown.

{Orange} The color of joy and enthusiasm. Orange combines the happiness of yellow with the intensity of red. Studies show that orange actually increases oxygen to the brain, and is highly accepted by young people. Orange can bring out excitement and fun and believed to actually cheer you up if you are down.

{Yellow} The color of happiness and optimism. It is also the most difficult color for your eye to absorb so it can be unbearable if used too much. Yellow can be used as a sign of hope. If yellow is a sign of hope and optimism, perhaps all credit union board rooms should be this color.

Look around you. How do you use color in your marketing materials to members? What color is your lobby? Could the color of your office affect how you work? Most importantly, how can we better use color to achieve the right response, invoke the appropriate emotional connections with members, and help us manage our brands?


About giraphcu

Greetings and salutations! Welcome to gira{ph}, a strategic marketing firm that helps credit unions amplify their greatness to create chemistry with consumers. The credit union movement has given so much to us. This is our way of giving back. Enjoy!
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