Direct Mail Campaigns using Color Psychology Marketing

What are you trying to get your customers to do when you send them direct mail?

Did you know that color can play a significant role in getting them to move forward?

Research has proven that it takes a potential customer around 90 seconds to form an opinion about a product or service based on what they see in a direct mail piece. That same research found that one of the biggest components of the piece which influenced their opinion was how it made them feel. The good news is that you have the ability to control those emotions through the use of color!

Study after study has shown how color can affect people in different ways so making sure that you are utilizing color in the right way will allow you to control the emotion of your potential customer as well as move that customer to action.

Colors That Increase Direct Mail Conversion Rates

One of the most common actions customers are hoping to achieve is to increase the conversion rate from your direct mail campaigns. This could be a phone call, making a purchase, signing up for an event or something similar. This can be achieved by utilizing the psychology of color.

We break down the specifics for each color below.

  • Yellow – This color is perfect if you want people to feel happy when they read your promotional materials. Yellow is a good color to use for direct mail items if you want to spread happiness and positivity, but it can be tiring to read for lengthy periods of time. Instead of utilizing yellow as your primary color, consider using it as an accent color.


  • Red – Because this color is connected with passion and love, using it in an advertisement for a romantic restaurant or a product made for two people to use together makes sense. Red is commonly associated with excitement, boldness, and risk. It can also be interpreted as romantic or amorous, as in roses and wine. Red attracts the eye more than any other color, and it stimulates appetites, particularly when coupled with yellow (think of every fast food logo ever). Because it is so appealing, red may not be the ideal choice for a primary color. Use this one sparingly, only for accents and emphasis.


  • Orange – This color is created by combining red and yellow, representing a wide spectrum of emotions. The color golden orange is frequently used in advertisements promoting wisdom or prosperity. Orange is widely described as America’s least favorite hue, probably because it conveys conflicting messages – dark orange can indicate a lack of trustworthiness, while a more golden orange can indicate wealth or knowledge. An orange that is closer to the center can express vitality, warmth, and passion. If you’re considering utilizing orange in your direct mail campaign, think about the many colors and tints of orange. Avoid using dark orange in your advertising campaigns since it can provoke thoughts of suspicion.


  • Green – Aqua and olive green are calming colors that frequently elicit sentiments of tranquility, protection, or emotional healing. Dark green is associated with envy and greed; use it sparingly if you wish to elicit good sentiments. Green is good for direct mail promoting healthy eating or the safety of medical products. Green has shown to be quite beneficial for direct mail relating to growth, health, or safety. Traditionally, it has represented abundance, money, and healing, but it has since been expanded to include recycling and ecology as well. It is often a tranquil, calming color that relaxes individuals, which may add to its efficacy in direct mail.


  • White – This color is often linked with purity or innocence, making it an excellent choice for charitable organizations. Because many people identify white with the medical industry, it’s a fantastic hue to use when promoting medical facilities, medical services, or healthy meals. White is frequently linked with purity, yet it can also appear sterile or chilly.


  • Blue – With this color you find it is frequently used in direct mail campaigns and commercials. Because blue lowers hunger, it should be avoided while promoting culinary products, foods, or beverages. Blue is the most prevalent hue used in direct mail and marketing. Not surprisingly, blue is associated with trustworthiness and professionalism in color psychology. But there’s more to its popularity than that; more than half of Americans say blue is their favorite hue, and males respond strongly to it, albeit women don’t. The disadvantage is that blue reduces appetites, so if you’re marketing a food product or restaurant, this might not be the ideal choice. Blue is a hue that men seem to respond well to, so use it generously if you’re addressing a man.


  • Black – This is typically associated with negativity. Although the color black is linked with strength and mystery, many people regard it as a symbol of death. Avoid using black backgrounds in your direct mail design; black backgrounds make it difficult for prospects to view your information in many cases. Despite its popularity as a strong color, black may also conjure up images of evil.

While what we’ve shared is a guide based on research conducted around color you may still find that you can play with different colors and combinations to generate the emotions and produce the results that you’re looking for.  If you have a design idea that you want to address color specifically then contact us today to talk in more detail

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