The Power of Color in Signs and Advertising

Color is more than just a beautiful part of life… turns out it can actually be used as a tool to change a customer’s mood, promote specific ideas, encourage a wide variety of feelings and have equal advertising power as the words you use! Did that statement make you rethink how much time you put into your sign or advertisement design?!

Let’s say that again… color has equal advertising power as the words you use. Here is an example of what I’m talking about:

Color is more than just a beautiful part of life… turns out it can actually be used as a tool to change a customer’s mood, promote specific ideas, encourage a wide variety of feelings and have equal advertising power as the words you use!

Did that statement make you rethink how much time you put into your sign or advertisement design?!

Let’s say that again… color has equal advertising power as the words you use. Here is an example of what I’m talking about:

Red Tomato
Green Tomato

My guess is even if you don’t like tomatoes you still found the left image more appealing than the right. The only difference between them is the colors used…. but which one is going to sell more tomatoes? Being familiar with what moods and emotions are generally attached to each color can help you advertise correctly and bring in the biggest return on investment when it comes to signage – physical or digital.

Below are some general concepts to help you next time you are creating an advertisement or sign design.

My guess is even if you don’t like tomatoes you still found the top image more appealing than the bottom one. The only difference between them is the colors used…. but which one is going to sell more tomatoes?

Being familiar with what moods and emotions are generally attached to each color can help you advertise correctly and bring in the biggest return on investment when it comes to signage – physical or digital.

Below are some general concepts to help you next time you are creating an advertisement or sign design.

Black Abstract

Power, Mystery, Sleek, Dark, Elegant, Bold, Dramatic, Formality, Sophistication

Because black is the absence of color, all colors will have a sharp contrast when combined with it. Using White as a secondary creates a sharp, classic look. Using Red as a secondary conveys strength and power. Black works well to convey feelings of intrigue, mystery and the unknown.

Black Abstract

Power, Mystery, Sleek, Dark, Elegant, Bold, Dramatic, Formality, Sophistication

Because black is the absence of color, all colors will have a sharp contrast when combined with it.

Using White as a secondary creates a sharp, classic look. Using Red as a secondary conveys strength and power.

Black works well to convey feelings of intrigue, mystery and the unknown.


Red Abstract

Intensity, Heat, Love, Passion, Danger, Speed, Desire, Aggressive, Urgency, Action

Red is the first color you notice due to its wavelength. Red represents energy and promotes action. Red is also the main color to represent love and passion. It works well to grab attention and is considered a very appetizing color. Using black as a secondary conveys strength and power. Red paired with green bring feelings of Christmas.

Red Abstract

Intensity, Heat, Love, Passion, Danger, Speed, Desire, Aggressive, Urgency, Action

Red is the first color you notice due to its wavelength. Red represents energy and promotes action. Red is also the main color to represent love and passion.

It works well to grab attention and is considered a very appetizing color.

Using black as a secondary conveys strength and power. Red paired with green bring feelings of Christmas.


Orange Abstract

Creative, Fun, Excitement, Warmth, Sunset, Spontaneous, Fall

Orange is a mixture of red and yellow, and you can tell because it gives off a vibe that is in between aggressive and laid back. It has a very balanced identity. It represents warmth and joy. Orange is a great multi season color because it makes you think summer heat as well as fall leaves and pumpkins. The bold side of orange gets your message across without being overly aggressive like red can sometimes do. Orange and blue work well together because they are complimentary colors. Orange, green and purple combine to make you think Halloween.

Orange Abstract

Creative, Fun, Excitement, Warmth, Sunset, Spontaneous, Fall

Orange is a mixture of red and yellow, and you can tell because it gives off a vibe that is in between aggressive and laid back. It has a very balanced identity. It represents warmth and joy.

Orange is a great multi season color because it makes you think summer heat as well as fall leaves and pumpkins. The bold side of orange gets your message across without being overly aggressive like red can sometimes do.

Orange and blue work well together because they are complimentary colors. Orange, green and purple combine to make you think Halloween.


Yellow Abstract

Joy, Happiness, Optimism, Rich, Cheery, Bright, Lightness, Warning, Positivity, Summer, Energy

Yellow strongly represents summer, light, happiness and joy, though overuse can irritate you! It is the most common color used in products and advertisements geared toward children. This is part of the reason it can make you think “school”. Along with red, it is considered a very appetizing color. Yellow combined with black helps create legibility at far distances.

Yellow Abstract

Joy, Happiness, Optimism, Rich, Cheery, Bright, Lightness, Warning, Positivity, Summer, Energy

Yellow strongly represents summer, light, happiness and joy, though overuse can irritate you! It is the most common color used in products and advertisements geared toward children. This is part of the reason it can make you think “school”.

Along with red, it is considered a very appetizing color. Yellow combined with black helps create legibility at far distances.


Green Abstract

Nature, Environment, Renewal, Growth, Luck, Health, Spring, Generosity, Money, Success, Organic

Green is considered to be the most relaxing and restful color for the human eye and shares some attributes with the color blue. It is also the most common color found in nature, which is why it strongly represents growth and renewal. Because money is green it has become a representation of finances, banking and ambition. Green is the perfect “spring” color and is associated with Irish culture and St. Patrick’s Day. Combining green with purple creates a very bold combination.

Green Abstract

Nature, Environment, Renewal, Growth, Luck, Health, Spring, Generosity, Money, Success, Organic

Green is considered to be the most relaxing and restful color for the human eye and shares some attributes with the color blue. It is also the most common color found in nature, which is why it strongly represents growth and renewal.

Because money is green it has become a representation of finances, banking and ambition. Green is the perfect “spring” color and is associated with Irish culture and St. Patrick’s Day.

Combining green with purple creates a very bold combination.


Blue Abstract

Trust, Dignity, Security, Sincerity, Peace, Integrity, Knowledge, Power, Seriousness, Wisdom, Integrity, Tranquility Nautical, Calmness, Water, Cold,

Blue is considered the corporate color because it promotes trust, intelligence, stability, and sincerity. Blue is considered the center of all “cool tones”. Because blue is the color of the sky it can represent open spaces and the sense of being free. Too much blue can convey feelings of uncaring, cold and sadness. A bright or an electric blue can be a very engaging and dynamic choice. Combining blue with red and white brings a sense of patriotism and politics. Unlike green which represents land… blue brings feeling of water.

Blue Abstract

Trust, Dignity, Security, Sincerity, Peace, Integrity, Knowledge, Power, Seriousness, Wisdom, Integrity, Tranquility Nautical, Calmness, Water, Cold,

Blue is considered the corporate color because it promotes trust, intelligence, stability, and sincerity. Blue is considered the center of all “cool tones”. Because blue is the color of the sky it can represent open spaces and the sense of being free.

Too much blue can convey feelings of uncaring, cold and sadness. A bright or an electric blue can be a very engaging and dynamic choice.

Combining blue with red and white brings a sense of patriotism and politics. Unlike green which represents land… blue brings feeling of water.


Purple Abstract

Creativity, Wisdom, Honor, Spirituality, Meditation, Artistic, Royalty, Luxury, Romance, Magic

Purple is a rare color found in nature which helps give it a sacred or exotic persona.  It has strong ties to wealth and royalty and is often associated with magic and mystery. Because purple is a creation of red and blue it retains both warm and cool properties. Purple is considered a feminine color and also a modern color because of its increase in use. Purple is a very unappetizing color.

Purple Abstract

Creativity, Wisdom, Honor, Spirituality, Meditation, Artistic, Royalty, Luxury, Romance, Magic

Purple is a rare color found in nature which helps give it a sacred or exotic persona.  It has strong ties to wealth and royalty and is often associated with magic and mystery.

Because purple is a creation of red and blue it retains both warm and cool properties.

Purple is considered a feminine color and also a modern color because of its increase in use. Purple is a very unappetizing color.


Pink Abstract

Exciting, Playful, Tropical, Flirtatious, Feminine, Cancer Awareness

Pink is a relative of red. Because it is softer than red it conjures up some of the same feelings like love and romance but has no ties to the aggressive and abrasive qualities that commonly go hand in hand. Its hot side can grab your attention, while its soft side can put you to sleep. Pink is the official color of girls and represents sugar and sweets. It is only appetizing when used to advertise candy or desserts. Hot pink represents playfulness and fun.

Pink Abstract

Exciting, Playful, Tropical, Flirtatious, Feminine, Cancer Awareness

Pink is a relative of red. Because it is softer than red it conjures up some of the same feelings like love and romance but has no ties to the aggressive and abrasive qualities that commonly go hand in hand. Its hot side can grab your attention, while its soft side can put you to sleep.

Pink is the official color of girls and represents sugar and sweets. It is only appetizing when used to advertise candy or desserts.

Hot pink represents playfulness and fun.


Brown Abstract

Earthy, Traditional, Wholesome, Natural, Rich, Warm, Rustic, Fall, Organic, Country, Stability, Reliability

Brown is a warm color that stimulates appetite for wholesome and organic food. It has strong ties to elements of earth like wood, dirt, and stone.It is a relaxing color that promotes feelings of coziness and stability. Brown is considered a neutral color which means it works well with any other color. Because it is so subdued, brown can be paired with any bright color to bring the intensity down.

Brown Abstract

Earthy, Traditional, Wholesome, Natural, Rich, Warm, Rustic, Fall, Organic, Country, Stability, Reliability

Brown is a warm color that stimulates appetite for wholesome and organic food. It has strong ties to elements of earth like wood, dirt, and stone.

It is a relaxing color that promotes feelings of coziness and stability. Brown is considered a neutral color which means it works well with any other color.

Because it is so subdued, brown can be paired with any bright color to bring the intensity down.


Silver Abstract

High Tech, Glamorous, Graceful, Sleek, Maturity, Sophisticated, Modern, Fancy

Silver is a combination of white and black which helps it conjure feelings of elegance and sophistication. Because precious metals are commonly in the silver/gray family silver has come to represent the tech and industrial fields. Silver has a sleek feel and is representative of all things high end, expensive, modern and glamorous.

Silver Abstract

High Tech, Glamorous, Graceful, Sleek, Maturity, Sophisticated, Modern, Fancy

Silver is a combination of white and black which helps it conjure feelings of elegance and sophistication. Because precious metals are commonly in the silver/gray family silver has come to represent the tech and industrial fields.

Silver has a sleek feel and is representative of all things high end, expensive, modern and glamorous.


White Abstract

Purity, Sterility, Classy, Peace, Calm, Winter, Wedding, Health, Clean, Medical Field

White is the opposite of black, but works with it to create a classic or sophisticated feel. White works with every color and helps them pop. It has a sense of emptiness, which is why it is commonly used in the background for anything you want to stand out. White is considered a positive color and has come to represent things like purity and innocence. White has a unique ability to take on the color tone of whatever color it is used in conjunction with. For example, combining white with blue retains a completely cool tone, while combining white with red retains a completely warm tone.

White Abstract

Purity, Sterility, Classy, Peace, Calm, Winter, Wedding, Health, Clean, Medical Field

White is the opposite of black, but works with it to create a classic or sophisticated feel. White works with every color and helps them pop. It has a sense of emptiness, which is why it is commonly used in the background for anything you want to stand out.

White is considered a positive color and has come to represent things like purity and innocence.

White has a unique ability to take on the color tone of whatever color it is used in conjunction with. For example, combining white with blue retains a completely cool tone, while combining white with red retains a completely warm tone.


Just like creating a food dish, every time you introduce a new color you are invoking a new feeling or emotion into your design! Use this to your advantage to tell a story or create complex moods & emotions using multiple colors combined with the simple verbiage!

Not quite confident in your design skills, or just looking for an experienced team to bring their expertise to your advertising? At Wilde Signs we not only create signage of all kinds, but we have a really great in-house design team that can help you take your signage to the next level.

We offer great sign options of all kinds. We know that every customer’s situation is different… that is why we try our  best to find a solution that fits your specific needs and budget. Check out wilde-signs.com or contact us today for a detailed quote on a design and/or sign project!

Not quite confident in your design skills, or just looking for an experienced team to bring their expertise to your advertising? At Wilde Signs we not only create signage of all kinds, but we have a really great in-house design team that can help you take your signage to the next level.

We offer great sign options of all kinds. We know that every customer’s situation is different… that is why we try our  best to find a solution that fits your specific needs and budget.

Check out wilde-signs.com or contact us today for a detailed quote on a design and/or sign project!

Below are a few sign designs we have recently created for customers. Our approach is to take our customers sale, promotion or message, compliment it with high quality imagery and introduce specific feelings and emotions using colors and design styles to reach potential customers.

Below are a few sign designs we have recently created for customers.

Our approach is to take our customers sale, promotion or message, compliment it with high quality imagery and introduce specific feelings and emotions using colors and design styles to reach potential customers.

Wilde Signs Logo

Here at Wilde Signs we set the bar high by offering our customers superior quality at a competitive price, paired with fast delivery.

Custom sign projects & manufacturing is our specialty. Don’t be overwhelmed by creating a solution on your own. Pass your projects off to us and we will see it through to outstanding results–beginning to end.

The Wilde Signs Promise You will receive an end product that you are happy with or we will make it right.

By | 2018-08-28T15:34:03+00:00 August 28th, 2018|"Design 101" Blog Series, Instructional, Tutorials|0 Comments

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