colour branding – australia’s proposed brand colour ban for cigarette giants

Karen Haller 01
Karen Haller

Proposed change to Australian cigarette packets - mock up of olive green packaging.

Australia’s health minister Nicola Roxon has unveiled the world’s toughest anti-tobacco bill which prevents companies from displaying their distinctive brand colours, along with their design and logo on cigarette packets with the aim to discourage the young from smoking.

If the legislation is passed cigarettes would have to be sold in olive green packaging as  research has shown this to be the least attractive colour for smokers, Ms Roxon has said.

colour psychology
Looking at the colour green, it represents growth, life, balance.  But it’s not just any green, olive green is a greeny/yellow colour mixed with black making it a muddy, murky colour, losing its clarity.  The research has tapped into the negative psychological qualities of green which are to do with stagnation, decay, drab. Its purpose is to elicit the negative feelings and associations.

what does colour do for a brand
* It grabs attention. Colour sends your brand’s message quicker to the brain than words or   shapes.
* Colour makes up for 80% of our buying decision.
* Colour works directly on your feelings and emotions.
* Colour differentiates your brand from your competitors.

The correct use of colour could increase brand recognition by up to 85%. These major brands would have spent a lot of time researching the right colour to reflect their brand and product.  Having this taking away from them, the major cigarette companies have said the government’s proposal would infringe international trademark and intellectual property laws.

Other countries have considered introducing a similar policy, so no doubt they will be watching to see if the Australian government succeed.

Source: The Australian

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  1. Tamsin Fox-Davies on July 25, 2011 at 4:08 pm

    This is brilliant! I love that they’re doing this, and it will be really interesting to see what it does to cigarette sales in Australia.

    • admin on July 29, 2011 at 8:22 am

      Hi Tamsin, I’ll be watching this with interest. The Australian government will no doubt have a battle on their hands with the cigarette giants.

  2. Tanya Rennick on July 31, 2011 at 10:01 pm

    Anything that might put people off the dreaded weed is a good thing. I stubbed my last cigarette out about 15 years ago and have not missed them one tiny bit. I was however, rather fond of Sobranie Cocktail cigarettes because of their pretty colours…

    • admin on August 1, 2011 at 8:40 am

      Isn’t that interesting how you were attracted to the colours of the cocktail cigarettes. That’s the colour having an effect on your subconscious….

  3. Michelle Weir on August 1, 2011 at 8:23 am

    What an unique proposition! Will be interesting to see the effect on both the Aussies, and if it also has a flow-on effect across the Tasmine in NZ. Watch this space I think!

    • admin on August 1, 2011 at 8:44 am

      Yes, it certainly is. I’m quite interested to see how this plays out. At one stage the UK were thinking of using all white for cigarette packaging. I think if this gets passed in Australia, the UK may review this again.

  4. Laura on August 1, 2011 at 8:38 pm

    What a great idea! Love it!
    Subtle and clever. 🙂

    • admin on August 3, 2011 at 7:49 pm

      So true it’s subtle… colour has a reaction on the subconscious.

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