Color Psychology in Billboard Advertising

Color Psychology in Billboard Advertising

Watchfire Signs

Verde Capital Ad 1


We are very visual creatures, so visual, in fact, that color plays a much larger role in influencing our decisions than we may think. Let’s explore the ways color psychology plays a role in billboard advertising, with some tips and suggestions along the way.

When creating billboard ads for a current or potential customer, the first thought is to use the same colors in their logo or branding as the colors for the ad. This is technically the safest way to go, but don’t be afraid to experiment with complementary colors or colors that get the message of your ad across more effectively than their brand colors.

Check out the chart below for the corresponding colors vs. feelings

Color Psychology in Billboard Advertising Chart

When designing ads for billboards, it’s a good practice, when you can, to use a bright color to draw the driver’s eye to the ad. Getting their attention is half the battle, once you do this your ad needs to clearly convey your message in a short amount of time. These bright colors include red, orange, yellow, pink, bright green, etc.

“A sign without red is dead.” -Dave Roland

Case study: Let’s say you’re creating a billboard ad for an attorney. They want to feature their “Auto Accident” area of practice. Their logo is very minimal, black and white, with very little color used in their branding. For the ad we may break their branding rules and use red to draw the eye to the ad and also convey a sense of danger and urgency.

On the other hand, if the ad was simply for branding purposes (to get their name out there), we may use only their brand colors (black and white).

Interesting video about color (not advertising related):

See also “Color Theory – a foolproof way of selecting ad colors”


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