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What's on your walls?

The marketing value of art.

By Elliot J. Nitkin

Do you know why large companies spend millions perfecting their logo?

Colour and image matters.  

I have read that as much as 80% of the value of a company's logo, that is 80% of the information we process about the company, is based on it's colour scheme alone.  Entire industries choose one colour over others because their clientele associate their industry with that colour.

How important can colour be to your client's experience?

What colour do you associate with the tech industry? IBM, Facebook and Nokia, for example, all use blue because it is thought to make it easier for clients to use their products.  But since everyone is using it, new tech companies use blue to reassure their clientele of product value, because their competition uses it.  

An interesting catch 22.


Fast food restaurants use red, a lot because it stimulates appetite.  There is also a very real reason they use yellow and white as accent colours: they soften the look of the logo so that it does not suggest "sale" to clients (think Red Tag sale).  

Of course they also use more cartoonish logos to appeal to families.  

Why am I pointing this out?  Colour and imagery are important to every type of business, not just those driven by graphic logos and packaging.

So here is the question I am going to pose to professionals and designers who consult with them: Does the art on your walls stimulate positive client action?

Do not under-estimate the value of your decor as marketing.  The style AND the imagery you choose says something about your company.  How do you want your client to feel so that he or she will respond with a purchase?

Is the tone of your business conservative?  Are they more likely to respond to landscapes?  

What is the age range of your clientele?  Are they looking to be stimulated with visceral reactions to emotional stimuli, like brightly coloured abstract work?

Is the value of your service going to be realized shortly, in the next few months or a year or over the next 20 or 30 years?  Should they be viewing imagery with long pathways into an ostensibly rosey future?

Even if you are a doctor, you may not need to think in strictly revenue generating terms.  But bed side manner is as important as technical knowledge and the feeling your patient has in your office creates or destroys trust.

For other professions, unless your client base is long standing, loyal to a fault and you have no outside economic worries, it is highly likely you must, in some manner, prospect for clients.  

Why would you risk all of that effort to loose that perspective client when they enter your office?

So where to begin?  First, think about your colours and what you are trying to convey.  According to Julien Bath, in an online posting for "Business Insider" (2017-04-05), these are the reasons that prominent companies chose their colours


1)  "McDonald's uses red because it's seen as energizing and stands out easily. It's even thought the color stimulates hunger, which may be why a number of other fast food brands use the color."
2)  "With the use of green, which is often used to signal health and restoration, Subway looks to convey the values of freshness which it has put at the core of its brand."
3)  "(For) Baskin Robbins (b)lue and pink are often combined to promote sugary products since pink signals sweetness and playfulness."
4)  "British Airways keeps the values of trustworthiness and reliability brands can get from using blue, but adds in red, signaling warmth and comfort."
5)  "Like many other airlines, Lufthansa uses blue but it's one of the few to add yellow, which stands for happiness and optimism."
6)  "The color blue is often used by telecoms companies because it conveys clarity and security.  The current Nokia logo has been in place ever since it moved to telecommunications equipment - before that it was a paper mill company."
7)  "Chanel was the pioneer of the famous "little black dress" so it's only natural for the color black to be a core part of the brand's identity."
8)  "(For) Hermes, (o)range is thought to exude extroversion and confidence, which Hermes has every right to as the world's second most valuable luxury brand."
9)  "The different shades of silver often used in the automobile industry stand for quality and workmanship."
10)  "The red Audi script in the logo is meant to stand for masculinity of the brand and a love for driving."
11)   "The Home Depot('s) (o)range is considered a youthful color, which evokes a feeling of excitement and fun."
12)  "When it comes to brand recognition through color it's hard to pass on the UK's postal service, Royal Mail (Red)."

These are just some of the choices made by businesses that are known the world over.  

So (to borrow a phrase) what's on your walls?

For a free consultation, you can email me at or better yet, post a picture of your space along with a description of your needs at and we will post it to the arts community saving you time and fuel.