Thought & Insight

How to choose the right colours and typefaces for your brand: a strategic and tactical guide

12.2022 | By Jennifer Allen

We’re pretty sure that at some point you’ve had to decide what colour to paint a room in your home? Perhaps you pick a particular shade of lipstick or choose a specific clothing colour to wear out? You might not even realise you’re doing it, but you’re actually choosing these colours because they help to shape your identity - they tell your story and they make you, you. And, the same goes for your brand, making it essential that you choose colours and typefaces that reflect your vision, mission, values and goals. After all, the colour and typeface that a brand chooses can have a huge influence on its audience and are both fundamental to seamlessly showcasing its personality.

Let’s explore how you can strategically and tactically choose the right colours and typefaces for your brand.

What to consider when choosing the colour for your brand?

There are several things you should consider when thinking strategically about what colours to use for your brand:

1. How do you want your audience to feel?

Specific colours can draw on certain emotions - in fact, according to research, up to 90 per cent of customers are instantly influenced by a brand’s colours. In short, the colours you choose can heavily impact whether a customer decides to engage with your business or not.

Here is a brief overview of what each colour traditionally connotes, to help you choose the right shade for your business:

  • Red: love, passion and excitement. However, it’s worth noting that some associate red with violence.
  • Pink: romance, femininity, tenderness, softness and cuteness.
  • Black: elegance, drama, mystery, power and strength.
  • White: purity, cleanliness and simplicity.
  • Purple: royalty, wealth, spirituality and creativity.
  • Orange: determination, vitality, success and productivity.
  • Green: optimism, relaxation, growth.
  • Blue: authority, integrity, intelligence, peace and loyalty.
  • Yellow: optimism, warmth, happiness and energy.

2. Do the colours you choose complement one another?

While you might like the ‘meaning’ behind two separate colours, you must choose your palette strategically, making sure they complement one another. Our advice would be to pick the main colour for your brand, and then explore optional secondary colours until you discover the perfect combination.

3. Is there a specific colour associated with your industry?

At least one of the colours you choose mind be pre-determined by your industry (it’s whether you decide to go against the norm or weave in particular colours your target audience is already familiar with). For example, a lot of dating agencies tend to incorporate pink into their branding, while recycling companies often use the colour green throughout their marketing.

How to choose the right typeface for your brand?

Think of your typeface - otherwise known as a font - as the glue that holds your brand together. You should ensure the typeface you choose is unique to your brand, but also readable and suitable to be used on each platform.

1. What are the different styles of typefaces available?

  • Serif fonts are more traditional and classic, like Times New Roman.
  • Sans-serif font styles are often deemed more modern, including the likes of Arial.
  • Handwritten fonts are perfect for brands wanting to appear approachable and playful, including Lucida Handwriting.
  • Script typefaces are often ideal for brands wanting to showcase elegance, with examples including Allura and Pacifico.
  • Decorative typefaces are more diverse, creative and experimental than others, and often come in a diverse range of playful shapes.

Just like when you choose your colour scheme, your font will dictate the mood of your brand and shape the way your audience feels.

2. Is the typeface you choose future-proof?

Although it’s easy to be dictated to by current trends, you need to choose a timeless typeface - and colour scheme - that will remain usable in the future.

3. Can you combine different typefaces?

Some brands will use different typefaces, while others will use the same font but alternative sizes. Your typefaces must complement one another - so if you do decide to choose more than one font, we advise you selecting them all from the same style family. After all, the last thing you want is for your typefaces to make your branding seem chaotic, unorganised and cluttered.

Advice for choosing the right colour and typeface for your brand

Here are a few things to consider when choosing the right colour and typeface for your brand:

  • Do your market and industry research
  • Experiment and play with combinations, rather than making a choice immediately
  • Ensure both the colour and typeface you choose truly reflect your brand
  • Once chosen, be consistent throughout all of your marketing

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