How do you choose the right colors and fonts for your logo, website, and other branding pieces? Which emotions do certain colors elicit? What should you consider when choosing a font?
In this podcast episode, Sam Carvalho speaks about how to choose colors and fonts to match your branding.
In This Podcast
- 3 things to keep in mind
1. Go for emotion first
Every color elicits a different kind of emotion or response. Some are softer and cooler, while others feel more hot and engaging. Think about the tone you want to set (professional, exciting, soothing, etc.) and pick a color that matches it.
PINK: Feminine, youth, romance, sweet
RED: Passion, aggression, violence, adventure
ORANGE: Excitement, inexpensive, youth, autumn (not a favorite among women)
YELLOW: Happy, friendly, cautious
GREEN: Natural, prosperity, money, stability
BLUE: Tranquil, trustworthy, professional, authoritative (generally a favorite of men as well as women)
PURPLE: Royal, luxurious, romantic, creative
BROWN: Dependable, natural, simple, sturdy
BLACK: Authoritative, strong, refined, mysterious
Be careful basing your brand colors on current trends, as this may not be long-lasting.
Something you should consider, however, are the colors common to your industry.
For example, technology companies love blue and black and the varying shades of each.
But that’s not to say that all brands follow that predictable pattern. Some intentionally go outside the box and pick unexpected colors in order to garner more attention and be unique within their industry.
Try to round your color choice up to a color scheme or color palette. For example, two primary colors and three secondary colors. There should be at least one bold color within the color scheme to be used for call-to-actions.
2. Let your words tell a story
In the same way that colors convey emotion, so do fonts. Some feel more formal, while others are light and whimsical. You definitely want something that’s easy to read at any size or zoom level, but you should also pay attention to what your fonts are “saying” outside of the text itself.
Here are some top websites to help you get the right response out of your brand’s font.
- Myfonts.com — This site’s useful and robust interface allows you to type in the text used for the font preview as well as some other good visuals.
- Dafont.com — Here, the mixture of amateur and professional fonts available will vary from free to pricey. But the menu of categories will help narrow down the list from thousands upon thousands to more manageable hundreds (or less). Note: Be sure you have proper usage rights; these are notated on each font summary.
- Fonts.com – The site boasts great font previews and visuals, combined with powerful search and category functions.
Opt for timelessness. Once you establish your branding, you may not want to have to redesign it every couple of years. So, consider a classic, tried-and-true font.
3. Poll your customers
Ultimately, your customers are the ones who need to respond to your branding and marketing. So, if you aren’t really sure about the new look you’re going for, consider asking a few of them for their opinions.
- How to Design for Your Target Audience | MP 45
- Email Sam at [email protected]
- Design Services With Sam
- Apply to work with us
Meet Sam Carvalho
Sam Carvalho is a graphic designer living in Cape Town, South Africa, with over five years of experience in both design and marketing, with a special interest and experience in the start-up environment.
She has been working with Practice of the Practice since 2016 and has helped over 70 therapist entrepreneurs take their practices to the next level by enhancing their visual branding. She loves working with a variety of clients on design-intensive tasks and is always up for a challenge!
Thanks For Listening!
Feel free to leave a comment below or share this podcast on social media by clicking on one of the social media links below! Alternatively, leave a review on iTunes and subscribe!
Marketing a Practice podcast is part of the Practice of the Practice Podcast Network, a network of podcasts seeking to help you market and grow your business and yourself. To hear other podcasts like Beta Male Revolution, Empowered and Unapologetic, Imperfect Thriving, or Faith in Practice, go to practiceofthepractice.com/network.
Welcome to the Marketing a Practice podcast with me, Sam Carvalho, where you will discover everything you need to know about marketing and branding your business. To find out more about how I can help you brand your business, visit www.practiceofthepractice.com/branding. And if you’d like to see some examples of my design work, be sure to follow me on Instagram @samanthacarvalhodesign.
Hi there. Thanks so much for joining me today on the Marketing a Practice podcast. In keeping with the theme of the previous episode I did on how to design for your particular audience, I thought I would hone in on two elements of that, namely, choosing your color scheme and fonts that match your brand. So I wanted to spend today talking a little bit about that because choosing the right colors and fonts, for your logo and website and other branding pieces can be something that confuses a lot of people, especially because there’s so many options out there. And they’re not really sure which ones to choose, which should be the right choice in terms of their ideal client, and also just the general look and feel of the brand. So a lot of business owners will tell you that they simply chose what they liked. And although this isn’t a bad starting point, as I mentioned in the episode all about how to design for your particular audience, you really want to keep your ideal client front and center when it comes to all things branding. So if you want to establish and maintain an identity that’s going to help you connect with customers and many years, there are a few things you should consider before making a final decision when it comes to your colors and your fonts.
So there’s basically three points that I want to address today. And the first is to go for emotion first. So we’ve spoken about this before. And I actually did an entire episode on color theory and the different meanings. And we go quite in depth into the different meanings of each color, and what to consider when choosing a color scheme and things like that. So I’m not going to go as in depth today, but we know that every color elicits a different kind of emotional response. Some are softer and cooler, while others feel more hot and engaging. Think about the tone you want to set. Is it a professional one? Is it an exciting tone, is it a soothing tone? And you want to pick a color that matches that. So just in a nutshell, I wanted to quickly run through some of the main colors, and the feelings or emotions associated with those.
So with the color pink, you’ve got your feminine, youth, romance, sweet kind of sensations. With red, it’s more passionate, aggressive, violent or adventurous. With orange, it kind of elicits excitement, inexpensive, youth, autumn, and it’s not a favorite among women interestingly enough. With yellow, it’s a happy color. It’s friendly, but also cautious. With green it’s about nature, prosperity, money and stability. With blue it’s tranquility, trustworthiness, professionalism, and authoritative. And that’s generally a favorite of men as well as women. That’s why blue is such a common color in branding. Purple is royal, luxurious, romantic and creative. Brown is dependable, natural, simple and sturdy. And black is authoritative, strong, refined and mysterious. So that’s in a nutshell, kind of the main colors and the emotions that they represent. But you really want to look deeper when you’re looking at a possible kind of scheme or colors being a brand.
So be careful basing your brand colors on current trends, as this may not be long lasting. And again, this is something that I repeat over and over in this podcast but as with all things design, colors come and go in trends as well. And I think there’s a website called Pantone, which literally identifies a color of the year. And so, although that’s nice to include in more short term marketing materials, things like social media or maybe a flyer for an event, there you can definitely play around with some of the more current trends when it comes to colors and design. But for something as long lasting as your logo, you don’t necessarily want to go with the current color trend, especially if it has nothing to do with your profession or your ideal client.
Something you should consider, however, other colors common to industry. For example, technology companies love blue and black, and varying shades of each. But that’s not to say that all brands follow that predictable pattern. Some intentionally go outside the box and pick unexpected colors in order to garner more attention and be unique within the industry. So you can decide if you want to remain kind of within your industry and the colors that have been known to work within your industry. That’s not necessarily a bad way to go. And we know that for counseling practices, blues and greens are popular colors and have been proven to work. But there’s always the alternative option, which is to go for a color scheme that’s going to stand out more and represent more of who you are. And that’s definitely not a bad way to go either. So spend some time thinking about which way you would like to go.
Try to round your color choice up to a kind of scheme or color palette, for example, have two primary colors and three secondary colors. There should be at least one bold color in the color scheme to be used for a call to action. So some websites that you can use to identify your color scheme is color.adobe.com, and HTMLcolorcodes.com. So those are great resources for identifying color schemes. It’s really nice just to play around as well, to see what color schemes they suggest. I think you can even type in your industry and see what they suggest. You can upload a picture and have a color scheme generated from that picture. So there are really great websites to go and play around with that, and help you identify the colors for your brand. So first and foremost, we’re going for emotion.
Second, you want your words to tell a story. So obviously now moving on to choosing fonts for your branding. In the same way that colors convey emotions, so do fonts. Some feel more formal, while others are light and whimsical. You definitely want something that’s easy to read at any size or zoom level, super important. But you should also pay attention to what the fonts are saying outside of the text itself. So as we’ve mentioned previously, the more kind of traditional corporate professional fonts is that of the serif fonts. And those are the ones who have the little feet at the end of the horizontal and vertical lines, whereas sans serif is considered more contemporary. And obviously, you have your script fonts, which can be considered more casual at times, or more kind of fancy and feminine. So really pay attention to the feel that the font is giving and what it’s communicating outside of what the actual words are saying. So here are some top websites to help you get the right response out of your brand’s font. And for those of you who are busy driving or walking while you’re listening to this, all of this will be available in the show notes of this episode.
So you’ve got myfonts.com. The site’s useful and robust interface allows you to type in the text used for the font preview as well as some other good visuals. You’ve got dafont.com. Here, the mixture of amateur and professional fonts available will vary from free to pricey. But the menu of categories will help narrow down the list from 1000s upon 1000s to a more manageable hundreds or less. So that’s what can be intimidating when it comes to choosing fonts is that there are literally 1000s available. But making use of the search function in these websites can help you narrow it down. Note however to be sure that you have the proper usage rights. These are notated on each font summary in dafont.com. And finally, fonts.com. This site boasts great fun previews and visuals and is combined with powerful search and category functions. So those are just some resources to find some great fonts that match your branding, that match what you want to communicate. And that will appeal to ideal clients.
So other things to consider when it comes to a font is to opt for timelessness. So once you establish your brand, and you may not want to have to redesign it every couple of years, obviously. That’s the point of kind of putting a lot of consideration into branding from the get go is to not have to redesign it for a long time. So consider a classic tried and true font. And if you really are struggling and if you’re just overwhelmed with a number of options, then, you know go with something that is tried and tested. Some fonts have enjoyed decades without too many signs of aging. For example, the typeface Helvetica has been around since 1957, yet it continues to be one of the most popular and classic fonts available. So again, go with something that’s tried and tested, that’s been proven to work. And again, you can always change it in, you know, a few years or 10 years, or whatever it may be. It’s not ideal but if it’s going to stop you from moving forward, then rather just use something that’s relatively common. And you can always come back and adjust it later. Again, like with colors, consider a font combination to cover all font requirements.
So remember, and this is, again, something that a brand style guide helps with, is that you’re going to need one font for titles and headlines and another for paragraph copy. It can be the same, where the title and headline is simply just scaled and bolded, for example, and maybe capitalized, and then it’s just in regular text or font for the copy. But it’s always nice to have kind of a variation font combination that works well together. And then that is something that you could put into your brand style guide so that moving forward, it’s consistent in all marketing material.
So those are some considerations when it comes to your fonts, and your colors. And finally, you can pull your customers. So when you’re choosing what colors or fonts to match your brand, ask your customers. Ultimately, they are the ones who need to respond to your branding and marketing. So if you aren’t really sure about the new look you’re going for, consider asking a few of them for their opinions. And that’s what’s nice about social media these days is that it makes it really easy to reach out to your customers and to get their ideas on something that you’re struggling with. So you can literally set up a poll on Facebook with maybe your top five fonts, and ask your Facebook followers which ones they think are best, or the same with colors. So really involve them in your branding process. And not only are you then getting colors and fonts that you know they’re going to like, but you’re also kind of engaging with them and you’re getting that brand loyalty from the very beginning.
So I hope this has been helpful, guys, and all the best choosing your colors and fonts and feel free to reach out to me if you need any help with this. And I’ll see you in the next episode.
Thanks for listening to the Marketing a Practice podcast. If you need help with branding your business, whether it be a new logo, rebrand, or you simply want to have a print flyer designed, head on over to www.practiceofthepractice.com/branding. And if you’d like to see some examples of my design work, be sure to follow me on Instagram @samanthacarvalhodesign. Finally, please subscribe, rate, and review this podcast on iTunes if you like what you’ve heard. Talk to you soon.
This podcast is designed to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to the subject matter covered. It is given with the understanding that neither the host, the publisher, or the guests are rendering legal, accounting, clinical, or any other professional information. If you want a professional, you should find one.