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Colour in event production

12th May 2015

We all know event planners aspire to give guests the best possible experience, continually yearning for guests to leave with butterflies in their stomach and a smile on their faces. Event production plays a key role in the execution of a project; it can mean the transformation from another mundane presentation to a real experience that leaves us with a lasting message (Perception, 2015).(1) With the current digital age and technology capabilities, the opportunities really are endless.

A highly positive way of engaging and communicating with audiences is through the connection of live experiences. The selection of aspects within event production can account for this, including colour, lighting, audio, video, set and staging, design and styling and also entertainment.

So, do you need help getting that extra edge to connect with your customers on a personal level? According to Haller (2) , colour is the answer, with the absolute power to make or break your brand. This applied colour psychology expert considers this particularly misunderstood marketing tool that has the potential to trigger emotional reactions, the ultimate craving for an events business.

KISSmetrics (2015) (3), a customer intelligence program, state that 85% of shoppers place colour as the predominant reason in buying a certain product or service, proving the significance of colour in a buyer’s journey, whilst also quietly making those sought-after emotive connections with brands. Thus, colour is more than just a visual experience; colour is a very potent phenomenon that influences us every day of our lives. Colour is effective in influencing our feelings, our behaviour and our moods, capable of making us feel more relaxed, while also encouraging us to spend more or eat more, for example. Hence, colour can guide purchasing behaviour.

So when asked to identify the colours of highly renowned brands such as Coca Cola and Facebook, the majority of our population will most likely answer without hesitation: red and blue. Hence, while colour forms such a significant impact at an event, it is necessary to mention the different associations that come with them. An online Event Magazine article (Carter, 2015) (4) talks of Robert Dunsmore, Director of live events at GMS EMEA, and his view on the hidden meanings behind brand colour. For example, red is a colour that grabs attention and is high energy, while green is associated with authenticity and spring. Pink suggests romance and femininity, while the colour yellow creates positivity and joyfulness. In a study of 18 brands within the financial services sector, Dunsmore concluded that 52.5% have blue branding, while 28% choose red. Selecting a particular colour or combination for brand identity will allow attendees to take away these associations.

While colours can each have a meaning, it can also dramatically influence certain physiological reactions and evoke feelings both personally and culturally (Stoltz, 2012) (5). When creating an event and forming an appropriate colour scheme, it is essential to consider cultural traditions and life experiences to add to the overall experience. This requires time and preparation in establishing who is giving the event, what type of event it is and the guest profile. Gaining knowledge in what colours are ‘hot’ can assist you in the instant impact and lasting memory of your event.

Colour is a major foundation of the look and feel of an event. Brands can no longer afford to undervalue the use and impacts of colour on overall sales and customer experiences. Branding an event to the pantone of the client has become fundamental.

(1) Perception (2015) ‘The Importance of Lighting Design Colours in Event Branding’, Click here...

(2) Haller, K. (2015) ‘Colour theory: why colour could make or break your brand’, Click here...

(3) KISSmetrics (2015) Click here...

(4) Carter, B. (2015) ‘ISES Talks: Behind the brand – how colours carry different meanings’, Click here...

(5) Stoltz, N. (2012) ‘Events in colour: choosing ideal colour schemes to create memorable special events’, Click here...

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