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How Color Affects Appeal In The Simplest Of Kitchen Utensils

 July 30, 2014  /  Comments Off on How Color Affects Appeal In The Simplest Of Kitchen Utensils

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Manufacturers and packagers often don’t get much insight into the psychology of color the way that marketers and designers do. Still by learning a little something from the psychologists, even food packagers and distributors can learn to think like marketers and designers do.

But don’t go into a swoon just yet. As quick and fast as color happens in the mind of any consumer, just as quickly manufacturers will dismiss it as insignificant or even meaningless.

The result of that too abrupt dismissal is the loss of a chance for that emotional connection. So important to marketers, an emotional connection can really result in repeat sales and even lifelong loyalty from the consumer.

How Color Affects Appeal In The Simplest Of Kitchen Utensils

The Brand Persona

But before we get to color itself, let’s take a quick look at who’s buying your color.

Whether we’re talking about dietary supplements or more basic dry goods for consumption, we’re talking about placing the colored spoon, scoop or similar kitchen utensil into the hands of a person.

That person is probably studied, examined and questioned by your marketing team, so to understand them a little better, you might want to consult with your marketing team. But short of that, or where a marketing team is unavailable, such as in the re-distributor’s shop, it’s still worth spending some time on understanding your consumer.

Clearly, dietary supplements offer you very specific insights into the weakness or vulnerability that a consumer may be feeling. But lots of dry good that require a colored utensil will require a color choice that more subtly appeals to the desires and wishes of your consumer.

Do everything you can to understand the persona your brand or product is intended to appeal to.  Are they young ambitious people? Or content and well-settled family providers?

Both cases can be very different, but in all cases, your Brand Persona, will probably only really match with some 20% of the people buying your product. This is important because that 20% will represent the 20% that is actually profitable and probably influencing the other 80% of your market. This is often because 80% of your market will imitate what just 20% is purchasing.

Color inside your Packaging!

While color perceptions and effects can vary widely amongst cultures, with an American consumer base we’re basically talking about the following perceptions of colors. If your Brand Persona is specific to an ethnic sub-population, you may want to take these observations with a grain of salt. Do a little more research about the perceptions of color for that sub-group and then make your decision!

Black!

Black was once thought of as a small, absorbent color shrinks the size of everything around it. No more. Over time, black has come to represent the exclusive, the expensive and the hard to attain – especially in food supplements. Like a “black book,” a black utensil will be perceived as the standby and even the luxury choice.

Orange!

Lots of novice color theorists will run to orange as the color not only of cheddar cheese, but of Burger King and over-eating too. It is associated with eating, Tang and feelings of fullness, but it’s also the color of oranges and citrus, and a relatively active lifestyle. Orange can provoke feelings of hunger.

This is well documented. But it’s also the hot color of an active lifestyle or even a glaring reflective color that stimulates the imagination or energy – such as in the wide variety of orange colored sports drinks and sports accessories.

Red!

But don’t get too nuts trying to provoke passion and hunger. Again, it depends on your buyer persona. Red can seem extreme or even tawdry and in small doses, it will inspire hunger. In larger quantities though it will quickly over power the feeling you’re trying to inspire and become ridiculous like a clown’s nose or children’s toy. For energy shakes and malts and protein though, it could be just the color to counter the dry and often dusty appearance of the product.

Blue!

Blue is often far more sensible. A sense of security and stability will often result in blue. It’s not appetizing – but a utensil is secondary to the food anyway. On the contrary, a blue spoon or scoop will reinforce the sensibility of the purchase and may lend it a clinical or scientific affirmation.

Teal!

We’re including it here for the very reason that it is such an industrial color. Between blue and green, you just end up with corporate, bank lobby teal. Don’t let that pressure you. Just like blue, it’s sensible and solid and reaffirms to your consumer that they’re purchasing from an established corporation. That can cut both ways though as it’s both big and established but also somewhat indifferent.

Green!

On the other hand, green can lend some ecological sensitivity to your presentation. It’s easy on the eye, but it also leans toward cleanliness, especially for detergents or cleaning powders, but also for more spiritually refreshing products.

These are just a few examples of how you can start to think about color with regard to the utensils you’re including in your packaging.  Above all, remember: even these small things can have a big effect on the success of the products you bring to the market!

This article was written by James Tomon. James is a freelance writer in Mexico City and enjoys writing especially for those difficult industries that most writers stay away from. In fact, he’s made a living out of it.

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  • Published: 3 years ago on July 30, 2014
  • Last Modified: July 30, 2014 @ 8:12 am
  • Filed Under: Other

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