This time of the year I “usually” write a blog post or newsletter about the color red. This is of course because the color surrounds us everywhere in December. I love all the white nuances outdoors (at least in my parts of the world), but they are definitely cold colors and we need the warm reds inside. Maybe that’s why Christmas has become red.

As a visual branding expert, I will point out what outstanding illustration the red Christmas is, on how a phenomenon can completely own a color. The Christmas chief designer has done a marvelous job, there is no doubt whatsoever that we are surrounded by Christmas these days.

For the rest of the year, the color red has to share its’ meaning with a couple of other phenomena. In our culture, red is the color of love, but also means DANGER and STOP. In England, fans of Liverpool FC will probably say that Christmas should be grateful to get to borrow their color in December…

Many people wonder if colors have an absolute meaning. I don’t think so, even if the internet overflows with colorful infographics that indicate specific colors have fixed psychological “meanings”. In fact, how a person experiences and perceives a color is a mix of personal and cultural preferences. The latter meaning that the color red, which means Christmas to us, means completely different things in other cultures. In China brides traditionally wear red, and in Ghana and Egypt, red represents sorrow and death.

If you are going to choose a color for your brand, have a look around and see what color conventions are at play in your culture and field of business. Choose to use them to your advantage or not. Don’t end up “in the wrong color”. If red is Christmas for us, yellow, at least in my part of the world is nearly synonymous with CHEAP. If your services are of high quality, value and price, you don’t want to look like the cheap yellows.

On the other hand, you may want to violate the color conventions quite consciously!

Like being the only PINK accountant.

Colors do not cease to fascinate and occupy me. Today I downloaded a whitepaper from ACADEMIA named “A Year of Color”, in the belief that I would find some inspiration for this post. I DID. In huge amounts. It turned out that the whitepaper was a reading list of articles on colors, seen through diverse thematic glasses. This will probably not take me only one year to read but provide me with colorful readings for a long while.

If you need to brainstorm or discuss thoughts and ideas on how to use colors in your business, I would love to help you. Please book a Virtual Coffee date, free of charge, here.