It's hard to believe that the holidays have almost come and gone. Arguably, one of the best parts of the holidays is the decorations. Who doesn't love going to the mall around Christmas time to view all the lights, tinsel, sights, and sounds?
Even before Thanksgiving you will start to see stores and restaurants strategically incorporating red and green into their design strategies to celebrate the season of giving (and to promote their holiday sales). After Christmas, the red and green is quickly taken down and replaced with shiny, metallic colors that are perfect for ringing in the New Year.
But what do these colors mean? And how can you incorporate these colors into your marketing strategies throughout the year? Below we've listed four of the most popular holiday colors, explained the psychology behind them, and examined how you can use them for the entirety of the year.
Red is a powerful, dominant, and energizing color. It also has the ability to stimulate an appetite, which is why red is used so frequently in restaurants and on restaurant logos. Although red encourages action and commands attention, it is important not to include too much in your design. Too much red is known to cause frustration, agitation, and annoyance.
Even if your logo doesn't have any red in it, it is important to incorporate red into your decorations. This is especially important if you are in the restaurant industry. A great way to incorporate pops of red into your restaurant design is through your menus. Draw attention to best-selling items by highlighting their names in a bold, red text. You can even feature bold, red text on your window graphics and stanchion signage. If you have the ability to include plants in your restaurant, make sure you spring for the red flowers as well.
Green is a soothing, natural, and harmonious color. It relieves stress and is the perfect complement to the fiery properties of the color red. It is also the color of prosperity, so it promotes the idea of having (and spending) a lot of money. However, too much green can be possessive and materialistic, so it is important not to go overboard.
Retail stores and restaurants could both benefit from incorporating the color green into their designs. Retail stores should focus more on the financial properties of the color green. A great way to incorporate green into your retail store design is through your promotional signage. By including pops of green in the signage (either making the text green or the background green) you are encouraging people to think of money and to think of how much value your sale is providing them.
Restaurants should focus more on the natural properties of the color green. A great way to incorporate green into your restaurant design is through your menus. If you want to highlight an organic item, be sure to do this in bold, green text. You can even show off your new, healthy dishes by including pictures of the food on top of a green background. This image can be placed on any type of promotional signage, such as window graphics, wall decals, and sidewalk signs.
New Year's Day
Silver is a color that signifies reflection, illumination, and purification, which is why it is a perfect color choice for your New Year's festivities. Silver can be seen as a glamorous color, full of prestige and wealth. Although silver can be respectable and dignified, it is important not to include too much in your design. Too much silver is seen as indecisive, dull, lifeless, and two-faced.
Silver can be used in a retail store to encourage shoppers to feel glamorous as they are browsing through the store. Silver is a crisp and clean color and is in line with the minimalist design trends that have been sprouting up as of late. It is best to use silver in a shiny, sparkly, and eye-catching fashion. If your store is geared towards young, budget shoppers who want to feel glamorous (such as Forever 21), incorporate silver accents in an eye-catching way, such as featuring a large, shiny, silver word on your wall graphic. If your store is geared towards affluent shoppers, incorporate silver accents in a delicate way, such as featuring dainty, silver cursive writing on your directional signage or rack toppers.
Gold is the color of wealth, success, and status. It can be thought of as silver's more affluent big brother. It signifies achievement, luxury, and prosperity. Although gold can be warm and shiny, too much gold can signify that your business is selfish, demanding, egotistical, and lacking kindness and generosity.
Retail stores and restaurants could both benefit from incorporating the color gold into their designs. Retail stores should focus more on the status properties of the color gold. Like the color silver, the way that gold is used in a retail store is dependent on the clientele. Younger clientele will gravitate towards loud, shiny, spectacular displays of gold. They will love everything from shiny, gold gift cards to dressing rooms that are painted gold. Older clientele will gravitate towards delicate, muted gold. They will love everything from simple, gold graphics on POP signage to dainty, gold text on direct mail pieces.
Restaurants should focus on the royal properties of gold. Even if your restaurant is an inexpensive burger joint, you want your customers to feel as if they are kings every time they come to eat there. Why not include a gold sticker to secure your burger wrappers in place? Or, steer away from the shiny properties of gold and take a cue from McDonald's "Golden Arches". This muted gold shade (which is pretty much just yellow) is optimistic and cheerful and can be applied to many different forms of marketing collateral without becoming overwhelming.
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