branding colour – how paint companies personalities shines through their paint colour names

Karen Haller 01
Karen Haller

Branding colour - paint names - Dulux range.

Paint companies are all about selling colour.  So how do they make sure their colours attract the right customer target market and ultimately make those all important sales.

By being clear on their brand personality, they are able to appeal to their target market, using emotive names they will resonate with, and ultimately purchase.

Here are examples of three very different paint companies with very different personalities and their paint colour names that match their brand personalities.


Branding colour - paint names - Dulux.

Their ready-mixed colour names strongly evoke nature. This fits the inspirational nature of the brand personality and its dominance of the ‘Natural Hints’ sector.  Dulux has a heritage of using natural-based colour names that appeal through a mix of description and evocation.  Randomly opening the Dulux colour card to see First Dawn, Cornflower White and Sea Blue.

lawrence llewelyn-bowen

Branding colour - paint names - Laurence Llewelyn Bowen.

By contrast Lawrence Llewelyn-Bowen paint colours have fun and irreverent names that match both his outgoing personality and a smaller more saturated colour palette – Up Pompeii, Bloody Mary and Pinch of Posh sit alongside Exceedingly Kipling Pink and Fluffy Bunny.

farrow & ball

Branding colour - paint names - Farrow & Ball.

Their colour names evoke an era of Town and Country life, grand houses and fine living. Names like Dove Tale, Cook’s Blue and Charleston Gray again fit both the colour palette and the brand’s positioning. Adding Elephant’s Breath and Dead Salmon, names which have become real talking points.

Do you have a favourite paint colour name? What emotions, feelings, memories does it conjure up for you?

If you would like to know the process of what goes into selecting a paint name check out colour & design surgery…how are paint colour names chosen?

Source: Individual paint company information supplied by Lynne Stainthorpe, Director Big Idea, an expert on colour marketing, having worked on paint ranges in Europe and Asia.

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  1. Tanya Rennick on October 2, 2011 at 12:31 pm

    I must admit to being totally led by the wonderful mode evoking paint colour names by Farrow and Ball. I have always found their paints to be so wonderfully pigment rich that they really do deserve their place in the hall of fame. That said, I am very entertained by Lawrence Llewelyn-Bowen’s “Choco Chick Lit” and wonder if it would satisfy my constant craving for the stuff if it was actually painted on the walls…

    • admin on October 3, 2011 at 4:40 pm

      Hi Tanya,

      I think at some level we are all enticed by the feelings and emotions paint colour names evoke. It’s usually attached to an association or a memory. Just reading the name ‘Choco Chick Lit’ definitely releases the feel good endorphins for me!

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