How Consumers Perceive Color - The Color Psychology of Blue

Published: 30-Jun-2021
Last Updated: 24-Jul-2021
How Consumers Perceive Color - The Color Psychology of Blue

The color blue is generally associated with trust and security, making it a great choice for brands that want to convey these qualities in their visual media. 

But how can you make sure your brand colors are the right fit? What if they don't mean what you think they do to the audience you are trying to reach?

This article will help you understand the psychological effects that blue has on consumers and how it can be used in branding to convey the message you intend to send. We will also provide specific examples of how brands use blue effectively. 

What is the Meaning of Blue?

Blue is an amazing color. It makes us feel secure and relaxed without us ever noticing why or how it does so. Ironically, the psychological effects of blue are largely based on what the eye sees rather than what the mind recognizes. 

This is because blue color receptors in the brain receive more input from blue light than any other color receptor does, due to its particular wavelength. The simplicity of blue makes it universally appealing, and we are more likely to trust brands whose logo incorporates this color, regardless of language or culture. 

Blue Supports Trust And Security

Because blue is the most popular color for logos worldwide, it builds instant recognition and trust among consumers. The use of blue in any brand's marketing supports trust, mainly because of its association with dependability, support, consistency, security, and quality.

The perception of trust also compels us to click through and give our personal information to brands to simply log in to their site and see what they have to offer. The relative safety and non-threatening nature of the color blue makes it a natural fit for a Sign In, Sign Up or other CTA button.

Blue Makes Us Feel Calm And Secure

The best example of the power of blue to motivate consumers is The Marlboro Man. The rugged image of this cowboy, which featured a blue shirt and, interestingly enough, no hat, created an immediate emotional response that spoke directly to consumers' need for security and relaxation. 

The fact that he wasn't wearing a cowboy hat reinforced the idea that smoking was safe — and even healthy — something completely opposite from what people were saying at the time about cigarettes. The historical evidence supports this: over fifty years after it was introduced in 1955, The Marlboro man campaign is still considered by many as one of the best marketing campaigns ever launched. 

Blue Helps The Brain Retain And Process Information

Perception happens effortlessly. As soon as our eyes receive visual information, our brain automatically recognizes its components and puts similar objects into the same category. The ability to recognize similarities is an essential cognitive skill that allows us to learn fast and save time and energy.

The process of intuiting information has an important role in how consumers can perceive brands with blue visual media: The color blue is associated through previous experiences with feelings like relaxation or cleanliness. The combination of these two emotions makes brands feel trustworthy and reliable because consumers believe they provide consistent quality—even if they have never tried their products before!

The Psychological Effects of the Color Blue in Branding

The color psychology behind it may be subconscious at first – many brands have used it to their advantage without realizing the science behind what made their particular shade work so well. The following are a few examples of brands that have achieved success in using blue color psychology to connect with their clients.


The founders of Dove knew that they wanted a blue logo, but they weren't sure which shade would work best with the product. The blue selected by Unilever ended up being right on target with what consumers were looking for in terms of brand personality. 

The use of this color has helped Dove differentiate itself from giants like P&G and has even been suggested as a significant contributor to the brand's success. The bold color gave Dove a robust and confident personality – one that its competitors struggled to match.

Sony PlayStation

Another example of the effective use of blue color psychology can be seen with Sony's Playstation brand. The video game console brand was launched in 1994, and it changed the way we think about gaming forever. 

The company's goal for the project was to create a phenomenon that would capture our imaginations – but even more significantly, they wanted to build an experience that replicated what people did when they were sitting on their couch watching TV or playing a board game. 

When building the branding for the PS2 - Sony’s second production console — the team at PlayStation took inspiration from some of these classic games and developed a simple, cool blue theme that carried across their marketing from print ads to box art and even the console’s menu theme. This has persisted across multiple generations, and to this day serves as a distinctive accent color for the Playstation brand.

The Blue Man Group

One of the most popular entertainment groups in Las Vegas takes advantage of the color psychology behind blue. The Blue Man Group's costumes are not actually colored blue; instead, they use theatrical lighting and grease paint on their faces and hands to appear glossy and bright throughout their performance. 

The dazzling colors and the performers' upbeat personalities help highlight one aspect of what blue means to the consumer – a feeling of happiness. The group has been a hit in Las Vegas ever since its debut.

The simplicity of the name The Blue Man Group and its logo have helped them stand out in their market and show marketers that you can deliver a powerful message without the need for complicated branding strategies.

Branding, Custom Made For You

At Carbon Digital, we specialize in developing effective branding. As part of our work, we've analyzed the ways people respond to colors in branding. With this knowledge, we help businesses like yours to utilize these responses to influence consumers and build a brand that converts.

Incorporating the psychology of color in your branding and website design is essential. Carbon Digital specializes in partnering with organizations to meet their branding and design needs. Our goal is to increase customer loyalty and conversions for your business, and brand and color play a significant role in this strategic plan.


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