Red appeals to our very basic, primal instincts. It signifies boldness, attraction, danger and sex. No other colour on the spectrum has the same power to convey so much meaning about a business, brand and/or product. Using red in branding, logo and website design can be powerful, but whereas this colour can also denote danger, caution in its usage is advised.
At a very basic level, red has the ability to simply bypass all rational thought and appeal directly to our primal brains, making the decision to engage, buy and even spend more. An instinct rather than a well-thought out choice.
Red in design and branding can be vibrant, bold, strong and exciting but it can also be aggressive, confrontational and overbearing so while some businesses such as Coca-Cola and Virgin use red in large proportions, others opt for using red in smaller amounts or in conjunction with other colours, like Target, Kellogg’s, Kmart and Westpac.
Positive red meanings:
Powerful, desirable, attention-grabbing, energetic, lustful, motivation, fast, strong, stimulating, passionate, courageous, driven, exciting, warm, determined, spontaneous, assertive and confident.
Negative red meaning:
Aggressive, over-bearing, ruthless, angry, tiring, fearful, domineering, quick-tempered, intolerant, rebellious, obstinate, resentful, violent and brutal.
‘Red is so powerful, that if you use it wrong it can be a catastrophe, but if you use it right your designs will pop like no other’ – Andrew Tate
And, of course, there are many shades of red to choose from – bright red is exciting and attention grabbing while darker shades can be perceived as warmer and more welcoming.
Bright red – exciting, energetic, economical
Burgundy – subtle, serious, sophisticated
Crimson – determined, sensual, powerful
Dark red – professional, luxurious, commanding
Maroon – controlled, strong, courageous
Scarlett – enthusiastic, fun, loving
The psychology of colour is constantly affecting consumers on a deep level, especially when it comes to branding, content marketing and social media. The colours that your business chooses to represent your brand can affect the feeling, mood and behaviour of your target audience and whether or not they will engage and connect with you.
Is red right for you? It could be a great strategic colour or one of the worst options, depending on your industry, your target audience, your offering, brand messaging and the attributes communication by your competitive landscape. An extensive brand audit by Liquid Creativity will reveal whether or not red is the best strategic decision for the positioning of your brand. Learn more by contacting the brand agency Liquid Creativity team, your local branding specialist, today.