Why is color important on Instagram?
The importance of color on Instagram Posts
Estimated reading time: 6 minutes
As far as written communication goes, color is the most instantaneous method of conveying messages and meanings. That is why color is important in your Instagram feed.
Color recognition is important to people and animals alike—warning of danger, enticing to a delicious treat. In the animal kingdom, bird plumage and fish fins display all the shades of the rainbow. Similarly, most creatures, including us, are drawn to strong visual cues. We are programmed to interpret visual information more quickly than any other format. When it comes to drawing attention to your posts on Instagram, the same principles apply.
In other words, the psychology of color is the science of how this affect our day-to-day behaviors. You may not give much thought to the colors you choose for your Instagram content, but how do your followers respond to your choices? Therefore, whether it’s evoking a nostalgic memory from childhood or instilling an overall tone for the reader (warm or cold), it plays a huge role in influencing the actions of your audience. [Leatrice Eiseman, Pantone’s Guide to Communicating with Colour, United Kingdom: F+W Media, 2000]
Furthermore, knowledge of color is key if you want to increase engagement with your “peeps.” This depends more on your creativity than it does on analyzing the color wheel, but to get those creative juices flowing let’s take a quick look at that wheel.
The traditional wheel has three primary colors: yellow, red, and blue. The three colors from which all other colors are made, and they cannot be made from any others. The secondary colors are orange, green, and purple and they are created when two primary colors are mixed together. In addition, intermediate or tertiary colors are red-orange, yellow-orange, yellow-green, blue-green, blue-violet, and red-violet. In other words, this occurs when primary and secondary colors (the ones next to each other on the wheel) are mixed.
Therefore, each color has a subliminal, underlying meaning that leads to a different emotional response:
- Yellow is optimistic and clear, and is an example of sunny days and happiness ‒ luminous, sunny, warming, it influences imagination and enlightenment.
- Red is bold and powerful, and representing energy and excitement ‒ exciting, sexy, dynamic, it displays authority and is attention-grabbing.
- Blue assumes a position of trust, dependability, and strength ‒ constant, dependable, cool, trustworthy, committed, it inspires confidence.
- Orange usually is cheerful and confident, bringing to mind bright, happy, sunny days ‒ energizing, friendly, inviting, hot, with high emotional arousal and value.
- Green is used to instill peace, growth, and health ‒ evoking springtime, freshness, restfulness, relaxation, it is soothing, refreshing, healing, and links us to nature.
- Purple (violet) has historically been regaled for the royals ‒ bravery, creativity, spirituality, it is regal, sensual, elegant, contemplative.
Black and White
- Black is dark and adds an element of being both mysterious and sophisticated ‒ powerful, strong, stylized, it lends sophistication and hints at mysteries of the night.
- White gives off an innocent and clean vibe and is frequently used for backgrounds on websites to reduce distraction.
“Color Psychology and Social Media Marketing,” Hyperchat Social, December 2, 2018
In conclusion, notice the colors used in the logos of your favorite retail stores and consider how they convey the responses above. For instance, a few examples are: Walmart, Facebook, and Lowes use blue; McDonalds, red and yellow; Target and Coca Cola, red; Amazon uses black and orange; Home Depot, orange; and Google and eBay incorporate multiple colors.
Insider Tip: Above all else, photographers know that warm images sell!
Social Media is a visual medium, so the photographs must speak for themselves. You don’t need to be a professional photographer (phone cameras work just fine), but your photos and videos should abide by the photography basics in order to be post-worthy: they need to be sharp, well lit, well composed, and in focus, at the very minimum.
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