Color and Branding for Bloggers
As a blogger myself, I understand how much of our own feelings, thoughts, and daily adventures are shared out there on our blogs. We usually talk about the things we love, that inspire us and we want to express with the spice and uniqueness that our own personality and style brings to the table. That is what makes us different from others and what makes our readers identify with us.
When a company chooses colors for their brand, they usually think in the color palette that expresses the nature of the products or services they are selling. An example: a makeup company might go for a pink, black or maybe a silver color palette, these colors are popular in that industry and they speak to their clients.
Bloggers are a bit different because they don’t have a physical product. Their business profile is more like a service, a service that is their content and their voice!
I struggled with this a lot at the beginning, I didn’t understand that I was my own brand. Imagine that you put your content, images, social media, business cards, including some pictures of the outfits that you wear when you go out to events in a bubble, all of these should have some kind of consistency and structure, just like a color palette. When I started building my brand I used a neutral and simple design, which although it could have been perfect for others, it just wasn’t me and didn’t match the name of my blog which was really important for me.
Some of the questions you can ask yourself when you are looking for the perfect color palette for your blog:
WHAT ARE MY FAVORITE COLORS?
Look around your closet, your home, your Pinterest boards. What colors are predominate throughout your content? Choosing your favorite colors for your blog is great because you feel comfortable around them and they also match your lifestyle and personality, which is often reflected in the content of your site.
My friend Sara from Sincerely Sara, used her favorite colors as inspiration for her blog.
“I chose purple, blue, and pink for my blog, Sincerely, Sara, for two reasons: The first reason is because those are my favorite colors and I think they go very well together. The second reason I chose them is because I want my blog to be a happy, open, and fun place, and I think those colors speak to that. “
And Rekita from Her and Nicole used a pink and gold color palette. The red touches express her cheerful and energetic personality and the gold details added the perfect amount of style and glamour. It is so her!
WHAT IS MY BLOG’S MAIN TOPIC?
Is it fashion, decor, do it yourself, food? If you don’t talk a lot about your personal life but you focus more on a specific topic, you could use some color psychology to choose a color palette that matches the industry you blog about. I believe that pink is great for fashion blogs, blue, green and the timeless combo black & white for decor sites, orange and brown for blogs about food and almost any bright and fun color palette can go well for a blog about crafting and do it yourself.
When you talk about a specific topic with a specific style, that never changes, you can create an original website design with colors that, instead of fighting with the content, are a complement to it. For example, the amazing Justina Blakeney whose site is a reflexion of the topic and style of her brand.
And there is the other side, the blogger that prefers to keep things simple so the background doesn’t fight with the content and images. My friend Maru from Fashiony Fab said:
“I wanted something very clean and fresh but with and a touch of color here and there so that the posts could be on the spotlight without any distractions. That’s why the background is mostly white. The second color that came to mind was gold, something fresh and glamorous that goes well with the fashion and beauty posts. And finally, for the touch of color, pink, since that’s my favorite color and it’s something that really catches the eye. What my designer and I did to help with this was to make a Pinterest board and pin all the inspiration there, which made the branding so much easier. “
WHAT INSPIRED ME?
An interesting example about the way bloggers work is my friend Carmen from Shugar Love. She choose the look of her blog, including the topic and font because of a personal experience, her own wedding theme.
“The initial inspiration for my blog was our wedding. We had a Beatles-themed wedding we called “All You Need is ShuGar Love.” “ShuGar” is the nickname my hubs and I created, which combines the first three letters of our last names. Working with our amazing wedding planner, we came up with a “love” concept and colors that would exude this emotion. The Beatles are the perfect representation of love for us since we are both huge Beatles fans. We decided to choose warm colors with teal and blue and pops of red and yellow. We felt this represented the happiness which filled our hearts as we were celebrating our “I do’s.”
When I decided to create my blog, I was thinking what has inspired me to finally make my writing public. I immediately thought of Mr. ShuGar’s love and our marriage. Because of his support, I felt the confidence to write from my heart. Therefore, I decided to use the similar colors, fonts, and theme from our wedding. My blog uses my favorite color, which is teal, as the primary color and pops of different shades of red as the pop of color used mainly with the hearts scattered throughout my blog. I also used some other bright accent colors like yellow, green, and purple in the social media buttons to add even more brightness to my blog. Grey and white are used as the neutral tones since they are my favorite softer colors.
The font I used is the Beatles “bootle” font that was made famous by The Beatles. It was a slight nod to the music that brought Mr.ShuGar and I together. Probably only Beatles fans will notice this font used, but I didn’t want to be overtly obvious when it came to Beatles references.
Ultimately, the colors, fonts, and imagery had to exude love and happiness because that is what I write about and what inspired my blog. Everything had to feel like my heart and who I am because my blog is a snapshot of what I love.”
HOW MANY COLORS SHOULD I USE?
It all depend of you! I am the worst example, because I wanted all the colors! But since my blog is about living colorfully, I guess I can go a little bit crazier than most. But I definitely recommend trying to use no more than 3 to 4 colors in your design including your text color. Too many colors can get confusing, and distract from your content, I know I’m breaking my own rule on my blog, but limiting colors can be as important as using the right colors to represent your blog.
HOW CAN I PUT TOGETHER THE RIGHT COLORS?
There are many tools to play with and choose color palettes out there. Let’s say that you decide to use your favorite color but don’t know with what others colors to complement it. You can use tools like these and play around until you find something you like.
Or you could also create an inspiration board with images and color combinations that inspire you like my friend Melissa did for her old site. Her inspiration was really interesting. She is also a strategic brand developer so, she know what she is doing! She is in the process of updating her business structure so her site is getting a facelift. I can’t wait to see the new one!
“The color palette all started with the gold color that I knew I wanted on the site. I’ve been playing around with so many colors on my blog with previous branding, and I knew I wanted the new branding to be sophisticated and memorable. Emerald was a natural choice just because I love how the deep green sort of represents money aka I want this branding to be successful haha! I added the neutral of a gray just to balance the emerald and gold colors. And voila – how I chose my branding! Moodboards and pins like this and this really helped me solidify the look as well!”
I love the way Angel from Studio-404 designed her site. The orange splashes make me want to jump and continue reading her articles with a smile in my face. She is also a talented graphic designer, so her blog is full on inspiration and great tips!
Opening and looking through the whole design should give the first impression of your personality to a new visitor. It is true that content is the most important thing but also, the way people feel inside a space has a lot to be with the topics you want to talk about in the way you want people to feel, and makes everything feel organized and fluid.
The thing with bloggers is that you can’t go wrong with color and branding if what you want is to show your own personality and style!
Other helpful links that can help you: