Can color be a hidden persuader? Home Depot got its original orange color from deconstructed circus tents used in its early marketing signage. Coca-Cola's signature red color also dates back more than 100 years (Reuters)
Can color be a hidden persuader?
Lexile

Google is one of the major U.S. corporations researching the power of color in the working world.

Meghan Casserly, spokeswoman for the U.S.-based organization built around the popular search engine, says Google is still early in its research. But it has already found "a clear link between color and satisfaction with a person's work area." That, in turn, can boost employee creativity and productivity.

Elyria Kemp is an assistant professor of marketing at the University of New Orleans. She says there's more competition than ever for time and attention. Color is "the silent salesperson."

"We have so much stimuli in the environment," she said. "That's why it's so important to have those distinctive colors that really stand out."

Kemp is following color trends in business. She is conducting her own research on the link between emotions and color. She said she's also looking at what colors consumers associate with certain services. They include transportation, health care, banks and financial services.

Kemp said when consumers make an evaluation of a product offering, typically they do this within 90 seconds or less. She said more than half of their initial assessment is based on color alone.

That's why so many companies are researching their color choices. They are spending thousands of dollars on the research, too. Just think of UPS's Pullman brown, Home Depot's vibrant orange and Tiffany & Co.'s distinct blue.

Joclyn Benedetto is spokeswoman for Tiffany & Co. She said the diamonds and glamour of the company's jewelry is linked to the signature Tiffany blue color. It wraps every creation. She said the color was selected by founder Charles Lewis Tiffany for the cover of "Blue Book, Tiffany's annual collection of exquisitely handcrafted jewels." It was first published in 1845.

Coca-Cola's signature red color also dates back more than 100 years. The soft drink was shipped in barrels painted red, said Ted Ryan, the company's spokesman.

Home Depot got its original orange color from deconstructed circus tents used in its early marketing signage. A spokesperson said research indicates that the first thing people think of is orange when they hear the name Home Depot.

Smaller companies are also recognizing the benefits of color. But picking the right color is important.

"You know when something is right because you get a feeling of security, of safety. And it's not something that you think about. It just will hit you," said Emil Hagopian. He's with Mar Plast Color Building Materials in Ann Arbor, Mich. "And sometimes, if it's done wrong, that also hits you."

Critical thinking challenge: How can companies use color to make more money?

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COMMENTS (69)
  • MaxMicheletti
    12/17/2014 - 05:43 p.m.

    This article is about colors and if they help with creativity and productivity. So far, Google is researching this and though they haven't gotten far, they have already found a link between the colors of the company and the creativity and productivity of the employees. Colors also make companies memorable. For example, for most people when they think of the Home Depot, they think of its vibrant orange, and with Coca Cola, their red. This is a great breakthrough in science. I never knew that colors changed the way people worked in the company. I wish that I could learn more and hopefully work at a place with the color right for me!

  • Eriku2
    12/17/2014 - 06:02 p.m.

    This Article is about how colors can be perswasive. Studies show that certain colors can be more convincing. I thik this is true and is used all the time.

  • LundyG-3
    12/17/2014 - 07:08 p.m.

    Google is currently looking into the power of color. Meghan Casserly found that a link between color and satisfaction, can boost an employ's creativity and productivity. Color is the key to sale time and attention. Elyria Kemp is researching color trends in businesses. She said that when consumers give a review of the product, half of the review is based on color. Businesses such as Home Depot, UPS, and Tiffany & Co are putting lots of money into this research for the perfect distinctive color. Coca-Cola's signature color has been there for at least 100 years. When it was first shipped, it was shipped in barrels painted red. Home Depot's color comes from the tents that were used in early marketing. When people hear the color orange, most people think of Home Depot. Smaller businesses are looking into this color scheme and trying to pick the best color for them.

    I never knew this about businesses and their marketing, so it's a cool thing to read about. I never really imagined color being an important part is the economy. I always thought that it had to do with symbols and logos. It's fun to learn about different things in our economy, and how one thing can either positively or negatively affect something else.

  • Jason0421-YYCA
    12/17/2014 - 09:08 p.m.

    I think that color is one of the biggest mysteries I know since people have different feelings when they see a specific color. I think that researching colors is very important because ever since the dinosaurs came, there was color. I feel that color should be researched, but I think that companies shouldn't use thousands of dollars just to find what the power of color can do.
    Critical thinking challenge: How can companies use color to make more money?
    Answer: Companies can use color to make more money because if they find the secret of color, they could make a shirt that has the secret color.

  • SofiaA-4
    12/17/2014 - 09:12 p.m.

    Colors are an important part of attracting consumers. Google has started researching why people associate color with companies and why this makes them feel comfortable or safe. However, they are still early in their research so there is not a lot of information yet. Examples of colors that people associate with companies are the bright orange of Home Depot, the distinct blue of Tiffany and Co, and the red of Coca-Cola.

    I agree with this because I do find myself associating colors with not just company logos but with almost anything. I can't wait to find out more about this when more facts are released.

  • Eugene0808-YYCA
    12/17/2014 - 09:18 p.m.

    I think this is cool to know because sometimes people go into the shops. This is hard for companies because they have to display their sign in the right color and they do not know what color people like. Also, it has to be eye-catching so it has to be in bright colors so more people become attracted by the color. It's amazing how companies use color to attract people into buying their products. This goes to fashion, merchandise, and marketing.
    Critical thinking challenge: How can companies use color to make more money?
    Answer: Companies can use color to make more money by attracting customers so they can buy the product.

  • SabrinaD3
    12/17/2014 - 10:34 p.m.

    A company's color is more than just part of it's brand. The color of a company's brand is a large part of a company's success. When you associate of the color orange with a brand you generally think of home depot. Bright distinct colors grab consumers attention and draw them to the product. Google is still researching this controversial topic.
    I had no idea there was a connection between the color of a product and a company's success. this article was fascinating and I want to read into this topic much more. I hope Google continues it's research on a company's color and the connection it has with a company's success.

  • ashleyb-3
    12/18/2014 - 02:12 a.m.

    The color in items or places is very important if they want business. It is very important to have those distinctive colors that really stand out in a product or place because it will make or break the decision if it will be bought or went to. Coca-Cola with its famous color red, home depot with orange, and Tiffany and Co jewelry with its bright blue color. I think that the color does really matter with places or things. If I had to choose between two things at a store, the color would help me choose. I think that it is very important to really think about the color of something before it is sold or advertised.

  • R.A.Micheal
    12/18/2014 - 08:36 a.m.

    They can use color to persuade buyers because most people evaluate the product in 90 seconds, and they mostly focus on color. So if they use color's that people like, then they are more likely to buy the product. Instead of putting it back on the shelf.

  • SD2000green
    12/18/2014 - 08:37 a.m.

    Companies can use colors because some colors make people feel different things. For example, if you're a food establishment, you may want to use the color red because it's a scientific fact that the color red makes people hungrier than they were before. You can tell this is true because fast food restaurants such as McDonalds and Burger King use an excessive amount of red, persuading people to eat more when they go there.

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