Developing a brand that clicks with consumers

Technology companies all want to be the next big thing. Their products often seek to meet needs that consumers don’t yet know they have. But a great idea is only the starting place: to stand out from the competition, they also have to show they're competent, and capable of running a sustainable business.
How do you choose a color for your logo that’s seen as modern and innovative, but also conveys your sophistication and business acumen? We’ve analyzed the color palettes of over 1,000 tech company logos, evaluated the brand personality traits that technology entrepreneurs want, and consulted color psychology experts in order to help you decide.  

Pixel by pixel: running the data on technology colors

  • Technology industry popular logo color choices
Scene from The Social Netowrk
There’s only one constant in Silicon Valley and other tech centers, and that’s change. That being said, there are four general, bold colors that industry leading technology companies seems to rely on: blue, white, black and red; no other color appears in more than 12% of logos.
Logo color requests in 99designs contests are decidedly more diverse, with the above colors being augmented by gray, green, orange, and red. Technology is the only industry in which contest-holders have a more colorful palette than industry leaders. Does that mean they’re thinking too outside of the box?
In a fast-changing industry with many new players, reliability is key. So it’s no wonder that blue—requested in 59% of technology logo design contests on 99designs and appearing in 61% of logos from the top technology companies— is chosen as a staple color. What is compatible with cool blue? Clean white. It appears in over 40% of industry-leading logos. Red is also a fiery hit with industry leaders, making an appearance over one third of the time. 

Remaining offline are brown and pink, each appearing in less than 2% of all technology logos. The earthy and childish associations of these two colors likely do not alight with the sleek, modern aesthetic of most tech companies.

When we look at the logos from the world’s top four tech companies, however, we see a wide number of hex codes represented, with only a limited selection of blue:
  • Apple logo
  • Samsung logo
  • Microsoft logo
  • Google logo
Google and Microsoft use a bright combination of blue, red, green and yellow. This mix represents their wide variety of product offerings while communicating action (red), freshness (green), fun (yellow) and security (blue).
At one point, the famous apple baked in a number of colors as well. But today, the highly-lauded brand sticks with a luxurious black. And like Apple, Samsung uses just one color: a strong, dependable navy blue.
The colors you select for your logo have a huge effect on how consumers view your brand. How might a startup emulate the success of trendsetting industry leaders before they get their A-round of funding?
Once you know what you want your brand personality to be, it’s easy to translate those traits into colors.

Check your profile: colors of brand personality in technology

When you complete a 99designs design brief, you are asked to rate your business on twelve personality traits.
  • 99designs' brand personality traits
Our data shows that tech entrepreneurs have the following preferences:
  • Technology industry preferred brand personality traits
From this we infer that people in technology want to appear modern, masculine and luxurious.  These align with the following colors:
  • Technology industry brand personality-color combinations
Based on these traits, we’d expect to see many red, blue and brown technology logos, and very few that are yellow.
In reality, we do see a lot of blue and red, but very little brown.
The combination of black, white, red, and blue make up the majority of colors used in technology logos. Blue stresses the qualities of reliability and competence, while red connotes excitement and brings attention to the innovative nature of the products.
So where did brown’s code break down? What’s not taken into account here is another color association: dirt. Quite the opposite of stark white tech offices with sleek furniture and silver hardware.

The next big thing: what colors should tech entrepreneurs consider?

Though the industry leaders have a limited palette, technology is all about innovation. When it comes to colors, entrepreneurs shouldn’t be afraid to think outside the blue and white box. There are several color choices outside of the standards that will ensure your company is still perceived as modern, masculine and luxurious.
  • Psychology of color meanings
Orange is a dynamic, modern color. If your company is high energy, with a focus on fun, play up those traits with an orange logo. If you want to show your competence but don’t want to get the blues, consider purple: the color is very luxurious and also has cultural connotations of wisdom. Take a look at how a few industry leaders have chosen to play up other brand personality traits in their logo color choices.
  • Yahoo! logo
  • Pinterest logo
  • Snapchat logo
As you seek to design your technology logo, you’ll want to take your brand personality into account, and think about the traits you most want to convey. Color is a personal choice, but knowing its psychology can help you make an informed decision for your small business.
Have we confirmed your choice for blue? Or are you ready to take a byte out of orange? Either way, when you design your logo you’ll know it’ll be one that clicks.

Blue collar, white collar, purple collar: what are the colors of other industries?

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