So perhaps you’re starting out in self-storage or plan to, tasked with creating your business brand identity. This will undoubtedly mean choosing colours including your self storage doors and frames. So where do you start? Keep things simple, take a chance and pick your favourite colour(s), delegate to someone else or do some research on colour and end up in a myriad of theories and suggestions around colour psychology? Are you Blue for Trust or Red for Passion? Perhaps you don’t go for that approach and just do what feels right? Surely, however you choose your branding and your door colours the important thing is that you like it, it establishes your brand and you believe it will work for your potential customers. Looking around the self storage industry it would seem that all the primary colours have been used in a combination of ways successfully and whilst other retail sectors colour choices impact us (think high street, fast food, & supermarkets for example) the self-storage operator also knows that their location is priority over what colour the self-storage doors are but that their brand identity beyond location also needs to be seen and recognised. So to answer some of these questions let’s look at how you can choose your colour. Here are 3 reasons why there isn’t one right way….
1 IT DEPENDS WHAT YOU ARE SELLING AND WHO TO
Many studies and articles have been carried out on what drives people when it comes to product selection including the power of persuasion that colour can have. Colour tests have been used to assess personality types however research suggests that colour appeal is more down to the persons actual life experiences and how they translate colour into meaning and their feelings about it. This leaves the theory of traditional colour psychology and the meaning of the colour alone just a little too restrictive. Yellow in one person may evoke positivity and confidence where in others it may emit fear or anxiety! The other key consideration is what product the customer is buying. Colour choice for a new car or new coat is very subjective however when it comes to choosing a place to store stuff any snap decision is unlikely to be because they didn’t like your self-storage door colour and studies have shown that quick decisions based on colour are product dependant. So when choosing your branding where do you start? You could research colour psychology when branding and read various findings to know that there is no “right” answer.
2 BRAND IDENTITY & THE “RIGHT” COLOUR IS A MATTER OF CONTEXT
Specific colour marketing research suggests almost 90% of consumer quick decisions whilst based on colour, the product and the consumer perception of that colour for that specific product are very relative. Other research considers colour and product and how a brand may be perceived appropriate or not. Clearly brand recognition matters as it is something people connect with as familiar therefore colour is certainly has its place when you are creating your own unique brand. The question still then remains, if colour matters for brand identification but that colour also depends on the product and environment in which it is perceived by the customer, how do you know what colour to choose for your brand identity in your self-storage environment? To answer this let’s look at it from a third angle.
3 IT’S ALL ABOUT YOU!
Perhaps the most logical method for business branding a self-storage retail product rather than basing any choice on traditional colour psychology, or brand recognition alone, which has its limitations, is more about setting aside traditional interpretations of how to use and interpret colour. Instead focus on anticipating how your customers might respond to how appropriate your colours are in your environment, which can be far more valuable. To substantiate, one particular study considered 5 dimensions of brand personality. (Figure 1 extract below )
The emphasis being on the colour you choose for your brand is relative to how it might be perceived in its context and fit with the business image and message you want to convey to your clients. A study by Psychologist and Stanford professor Jennifer Aaker titled “Dimensions of Brand Personality” highlights the five core dimensions that contribute to a brand’s personality and illustrated above in Figure 1
As for self-storage this latter point seems to be a far more helpful and practical approach to deciding on your branding colours than purely through interpretation of colour meaning. (Unless it fits your branding message too of course!) Selecting colours that are authentic to your own brand personality, portraying what truly reflects your business has to offer and the brand styling you do it in seems to be the way to go.
On a side note and going even deeper consider colour preferences between genders and colour influenced by location and culture on the wider scale where other research shows cultural awareness is relative to a person’s environment which dictates gender colour suitability and thus influencing choices.
Can you believe that once upon a time pink was associated with boys and blue for girls so colour perceptions can change and are very subjective with different variants of time, place, product, context, environment.
The good news is it seems there is no one right answer to getting the “right” colours. You are free to trust yourself, follow your gut and colour your self storage business including your doors and frames in colour(s) that uniquely reflect your brand personality; the image and mood you want to convey to your clients in the context and practical environment of self-storage. Whatever and however you choose your colours in life and in self-storage we hope they are congruent to you and help you stand out alongside the fundamental service you provide.
Self Storage Side Note: When you’ve decided how you will choose your brand colour ideas remember you can have your doors & frames in a wide choice of colours or even contrast them too! Hit the button to contact us for a chat about developing your self storage plan.
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