Walk up to a psychologist or an interior designer and ask them about the color yellow. Go ahead. I dare you. 9 times out of 10 they’re going to tell you that an abundance of yellow is over-stimulating. It should be used as a secondary color at best.
Are they right? Yes…and no. How much yellow you should incorporate when printing your marketing materials is going to depend heavily on your company, your logo and the shade of yellow you decide to use, but when you’re going months without seeing the sun it would be incredibly foolish to give up a great opportunity to bring a little light and laughter to your clientele.
And get yourself noticed while you’re at it. Because it takes a better man than me to not at least stop and take a look at something that’s bright and sunny when it’s grey and cold outside.
The Real Meaning of Yellow
Before you decide to use yellow in your marketing campaign, make sure yellow is going to say the things you need it to say. On one hand, yellow is the color of hope and happiness. It’s bright and cheerful. It can do wonderful things to help chase away your blues. (We painted our living room bright yellow to help keep the winter doldrums away from our door.)
On the other hand, you’re not usually trying to make someone feel hopeful or happy when you call them a yellow-bellied snake. It’s also associated with cowardice and deceit and, in other countries, is worn during mourning.
A quick aside: If you’re printing marketing materials to be distributed in other countries, research color meanings in that country first. To give you an idea, Blue is a symbol of tradition and trust in the US, but it’s the color associated with trouble among the Cherokee nation.
How Much is too Much?
Yellow’s real value lies in its versatility. A strong or buttery yellow goes very well with the blues, greens and reds that you’re going to want when printing your winter marketing materials, adding a spot of sunshine to an otherwise dull palette.
When used as a background it’s particularly noticeable, making it extremely valuable from a marketing perspective; however, too much yellow can over-stimulate the eyes of your viewers to the point of becoming obnoxious. If you’re using yellow as a background color, be sure you have a good-sized graphic to go with it.
And that’s yellow in a nutshell! Questions? Comments? Suggestions? Toss them in below, and tune in tomorrow to find out how you can use brown in your winter marketing campaign without inspiring your customers to throw your work straight into the trash.