What do Salesforce, Optimizely and Acquia all have in common? Aside from the fact they are all customer experience and marketing technology companies, they all also use the color blue as part of their logo and website design. And they’re not the only ones – IBM, Chase, HP, GM, Intel, LinkedIn, Twitter, Goldman Sachs and many other well-known companies have blue logos.

Why blue? Blue signifies trust and safety, making it the go-to color for those in the financial and tech sector according to research from the International Journal of Innovative Science and Research Technology (IJISRT) and its study on Psychology of Colors in Marketing.

Its research shows that a consistent use of color can contribute to the maintenance of positive brand equity, and each color sends a message. This means CX and marketing leaders need to be aware of the message they’re sending as they incorporate color along the CX journey.

Here at CMSWire, we use an orange logo. According to the research, “orange is considered the color of energy. It captures attention, is fun and entertaining, and makes consumers feel they are dealing with a pioneering company, product or service.”

Daphne Hermans, senior consultant of customer transformation for Capgemini Invent who’s conducted research on the interface between marketing and psychology and in a recent blog, shared a list of psychological constructs she said can drive a competitive edge and “supercharge your business’ customer experience.”

First on her list — color psychology.

The Psychology of Color in Marketing

Colors impact the way we speak, feel and see the world — often subconsciously — so it goes to reason they also have a significant influence on CX and marketing.

“We associate certain colors with whimsy, others with trust and others with sensuality,” Hermans said. “Depending on what you’re selling, be aware of your use of color. It is important to send a consistent message on all fronts. Appeal to the subconscious mind first, and logic later.”

On Dec. 1, Pantone, a color trend forecasting and brand color development company, announced its 2023 color of the year as “Viva Magenta” describing it as “expressive of a new signal of strength…brave and fearless, and a pulsating color whose exuberance promotes a joyous and optimistic celebration, writing a new narrative.”

In May, Pantone and sLabs announced they’d formed a strategic partnership to create omnichannel color tools for creators and brands in the metaverse with sLabs incorporating Pantone’s SkinTone guide and color systems into their metaverse ecosystem.

“Color defines our world, both digital and physical,” Pantone officials said in a statement accounting the partnership. “In the metaverse, just as in the physical world, representation will matter. Color is powerful. It has been used to bring us together as well as divide us.”

Related Article: Psychology and Science Behind Modern Customer Experience

Companies Claiming Color Ownership

For some companies, a specific color is so intertwined with their CX and brand identity, they copyrighted it. Like Tiffany Blue. In 1998, the jewelry company Tiffany, registered it as a color trademark. And in 2001, Pantone standardized it as a custom color for Tiffany that is not available to the public.

In a statement on their website, company officials said, “The power of the instantly recognizable color — whether the Tiffany Blue Box® or on jewelry and Home & Accessories designs — cannot be overstated.”

Other companies with a trademarked color include Owens-Corning pink, UPS brown, 3M canary yellow, Target red and Cadbury purple — just to name a few.

In 2019, NPR reported on the case of Daniel Schreiber, CEO of a company called Lemonade. Schreiber received a letter from Deutsche Telekom (the parent company of T-Mobile) accusing Lemonade of stealing the T-Mobile trademark, but not the tagline or logo. Instead, this dispute was over a color — Pantone Rhodamine Red U, also known as magenta, which Deutsche Telekom claimed as their property. A German court agreed, issuing a court order requiring Lemonade to remove the color from its German branding. But Lemonade fought back with a #freethepink campaign and in 2020, a French court found in their favor.

How to Use Color Psychology for Better CX

Jill Morton, author of the Color Voodoo series of books about color theory and the creator of Color Matters, said retailers can choose the right colors for their ecommerce marketing by evaluating their products, services and their target market — and then ensuring the colors they incorporate have some relationship to those things (either symbolic or literal).

In a blog post, Morton said color must successfully work on several levels:

  • The colors must be as accurate as the existing technology will allow
  • The colors must succeed in conveying appropriate information
  • Colors must function competently as the primary structural element in the store’s design — the web page layout. In this capacity, color must create appropriate spatial and navigational effects on the page and the site as a whole
  • As the primary aesthetic tool, colors must create a sense of visual harmony, thus sustaining and enhancing the customers interest in the shopping experience

"In order to influence a response and reaction in your audience, colors can be an extremely powerful tool. Various colors trigger different emotions and moods in people — a certain color may evoke urgency and alertness, while another may evoke calm or even nostalgia," said Carlos Barros, Director of Marketing at Epos. “The color of a product is also one of the primary reasons why consumers buy it. In the case of affordability, a consumer's decision is largely influenced by an item's visual appeal.”

Dustin Ray, chief growth officer at Incfile, said when marketing internationally, brands should remember to be cognizant of cultural differences.

“What colors may work in the USA, may not work in Japan," Ray said. "So first and foremost, you should be using color combinations for customers that are in a specific region, and you’re aware of specific colors being perceived in a specific way. Ideally, the content or vital information you want your customers should interact with should pop out more and entice your visitors to take action. Making sure that your color marketing strategy is creating a seamless experience for visitors should be key as color distraction with funky headlines and sub-heads might strain their eyes.”

Related Article: Can Low-Code, No-Code Tech Help Marketers With Emotion-Led CX Design?

The Many Colors of Marketing and CX

While some may just be discovering the marketing and CX implications of color, color psychology has been around for some time. In the 19th century, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (often credited as the pioneer of color psychology) studied the human reaction to color and created a system in which colors corresponded to certain aspects of the human brain.

Today, graphic designers are familiar with emotional color wheels and refer to them in brand design. According to the IJISRT study, 90% of instantaneous consumer decisions are based on colors, while 80% believe that color increases brand awareness. And while the way color affects one’s psychology depends on many factors, such as environment, gender and age, researchers have been able to connect general emotions to each color.


Energetic, attentive, exciting — and could also be perceived as aggressive.

Brands that use it:

Coca-Cola, Target, Netflix


Happy, friendly, positive and energetic

Brands that use it:

Nikon, Ikea, DHL


Fun, playful, happy, energetic, modern

Brands that use it:

Home Depot, Amazon, CMSWire


Learning Opportunities

Reliable, refreshing, restful, soothing

Brands that use it:

Spotify, John Deere, Home Goods


Stable, safe, durable

Brands that use it:

UPS, Cracker Barrel


Romantic, soft, tender

Brands that use it:

Johnson & Johnson, Mary Kay, Victoria's Secret


Mysterious, sensual, royal

Brands that use it:

FedEx, Cadbury, Yahoo


Innocent, simple, clean, sterile

Brands that use it:

Apple, the ‘A’ in Adobe (many brands incorporate black and white together)


Elegant, serious, bold, powerful

Brands that use it:

Gucci, Chanel, Michael Kors, Coach

Conclusion: Creating a Strong, Consistent Message in CX, Marketing

Brenton Thomas, founder of the digital marketing agency Twibi, said color plays a crucial role in consumer psychology and can be a powerful tool for branding, marketing and customer experience.

“By carefully selecting the colors used in branding, marketing and customer experiences, businesses can create a strong and consistent message that resonates with their target audience,” Thomas said. “Additionally using color effectively in CX design can help to guide customers through the purchasing journey and improve their overall experience. Ultimately, understanding the role of color in consumer psychology can be a valuable asset for businesses looking to create a successful CX strategy in a crowded marketplace.”