By Daniel Hunter

Research from Samsung UK Print Division has found that nearly two thirds (62%) of British consumers are unaware that colour influences their behaviour.

However, in the same poll of over 1,000 UK adults, an average of 23% of respondents correctly identified certain business characteristics with colours, reflecting connections that have been proven through years of expert research.

Across themes such as creativity, customer service and economic success, those who were able attribute a colour to key business attributes within the workplace, did so with a knowledge that chimes with colour experts.

For example, when asked which colour they most associated with creativity, yellow attracted the highest proportion (22.5%) of respondents, which correlates with the collective wisdom of colour psychologists. The findings show that, even at a subconscious level, businesses can use colour to successfully change perception.

Renowned colour Psychologist and founder of the consultancy, Colour Affects, Angela Wright, has backed the findings, saying, “This new research reiterates that most people are unaware that their everyday decisions, whether it be shopping or simply crossing the road are influenced by the colours around them. Businesses should take note, that even subconsciously, people are putting their trust in a brand based on colour.

“We know through decades of scientific research that around 80% of colour influence is based on instinct. The subconscious part of the brain responds to the colours that we see which goes back to primal instincts of flight or fight. Colours can’t be fully interpreted in isolation, because their effect can be altered by the way they are put together – the combination of colours is key. Nevertheless, knowledge of the influence certain colours have is good business practice.”

Graham Long, Vice President Corporate Sales & IT Solutions, Samsung UK said: “Through this research, we wanted to help businesses to understand how colour affects consumer behaviour. We found that businesses need to be savvy with the colours they use to keep up with a largely well informed public — from printed documents to the colours of the paint in their offices; the use of colour has an effect which will ultimately impact on a company’s prosperity. For example, if consumers react negatively to a brand, the other design elements must work twice as hard to overcome the powerful negative effect of the colours on the crucial first impression.”

Other findings from the research include:

· Show me the reddies. Red is the colour most consumers associate with economic success, prosperity and successful businesses (29%)
· Blue is best. Blue is the favourite colour, with 28% of respondents choosing it. It’s also seen as the most stimulating colour for a working environment (13%) and the most associated with corporate organisations (20%)
· Black is back in business. Black was seen as the most professional colour (17% said so)
· Minty green. Green was chosen as the ‘freshest’ colour (25%) and the colour most associated with good customer service (19%).

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