Don’t be Green With Envy – Diversify Your Brand’s Color

Posted by Refined Bud on April 28, 2016 in blog

It is time to move past the green branding in cannabis.

Most of the brands in the cannabis industry identify their business with the color green. Green is everywhere. In logos, brand images, marketing swag, websites, and media – it is everywhere. Frankly, it is surprising that so many companies have adopted the same color as the main part of their brand identity.

Let’s step back to Marketing 101. Brand identity is how you want your customers to perceive your business. Your identity is formed from the visible elements of your brand (i.e. name, logo, COLOR, design) and work together to distinguish your business from your competition. Research shows that between 62-90% of customer decision making is based on colors alone. When that much emphasis is placed on colors, it is time to reconsider using the same color as all your competitors.

When you avoid the color green for your cannabis brand, you create a unique identity for your business that will be easily recognized in a sea of the typical green imagery. Some research suggests a recognizable brand produces a positive response and strong activity in the brain when an image or element of the brand is presented. Getting a positive reaction to any part of your business is what all marketers strive for because a positive reaction to your branding can increase brand awareness which can boost your sales.

Ok – so we decided to rebrand to eliminate the green – what do we do know? Deciding on a new color can be a challenge. Leslie Harrington is a color consultant (Yes, that is a real thing, and it is pretty cool) and the co-founder of LH Color, A Center for Color Research and Consulting. She feels the process of choosing a color for your brand should be a grounded business decision, rather than artistic choice. She shares, “that it’s not about being artistic – it’s not any different than making any other strategic decision for your business.”

Ultimately, you want to find an expert who can assist you through the endless spectrum of colors and provide solid feedback and market research for your color decision. The importance of making the right color choice can have a drastic impact on your business. Harrington adds, “It doesn’t cost you any more to make the right color decision for your product. But if you choose the wrong color, from the onset, you’re not going to communicate what you want to your customer”.

Many color psychologists (Yes that is a real thing, too and equally awesome) agree that how we perceive colors depends on experiences, cultural differences, and personal preference. So the choice in color you make for your cannabis brand could affect people differently depending on those factors. There are a few keywords for every color. Green is go-to in cannabis because it represents health, wellness, the earth, and, obviously, the color of the plant.

There is no other industry that focuses heavily on a single color. Even US banks have branched out from the standard patriotic color scheme of red, white, and blue to include orange, green, silver and gold.

Hopping off the green train and exploring new colors for your brand isn’t just good for your brand, but for the industry as a whole. We constantly preach to avoid stereotypes in your social media campaign to promote your cannabis brand and the industry in a positive way.

You’ve heard a lot about why color is important and why green is not the new black. So what colors should you consider for your cannabis brand besides green? Excellent thought. Here are a few of our recommendations, with meanings behind the colors and why they would be great in the cannabis industry.

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RED: It is a primary color and is a complementary color of green. Red is often associated with feelings of power, energy, and has been shown to arouse the senses. It creates a sense of urgency like a stop sign, or a sale sign does to grab the attention out of space. It is a bold color connected with strong emotions. Red is great for a cannabis brand because it shows strength, solidity, and passion.

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BLUE: It is a primary color and in the cool tones. Blue is often linked to water and cold temperatures but has been shown to produce feelings of trust, calmness, and serenity. Blue symbolizes loyalty, confidence, and certainty. Blue is a calming color with stillness and purity, yet a strong symbol of a faithful and reliable brand. Blue in cannabis can represent the tranquility and peacefulness that cannabis can provide to patients, a trustworthy and capable brand, and exudes a confident character.

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Purple: It is a secondary color and in the cool tones. Purple is frequently connected to royalty, wealth, and success. It has been known to produce feelings of spirituality, mystery, and calmness. Many kings wore purple robes to signify their nobility, but the color is also known to symbolize spiritual life, transcendence, and ambition. Purple is the combination of red and blue, creating a soothing yet powerful color. It combines the reliability and stability of blue with the power and ambition of red. Purple expresses a creative cannabis brand that can be bold, confident and in connection with pure consciousness.

Multicolored: The use of two or more colors in your branding indicates a playful and spirited business. It signifies creativity, fun nature, and artistry. It combines the symbolic emphasis of individual colors to create a dynamic and multi-leveled representation of your business. Together, they unify the different aspects of your brand identity to create a unique and powerful symbol. For cannabis brands, the multicolored option can express your creativity and work as an accurate symbol of your business. We highly recommend contacting professionals before deciding on several color choices because making one wrong color choice is bad, but making several wrong color choices is disastrous (we’re looking at you neon family). When used appropriately they can convey a beautiful message to your customers.

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Let’s ditch the green! We gave you several possibilities to create a unique brand for your business that will distinguish you from your competitors. The cannabis industry needs to move past the cliché green logos and sketched cannabis leaves and into a new era of business.

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