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Sensory Branding Video

Table tent uses

In honor of National Beer Drinking Day…

Establish consistency with a brand handbook

Going green? Font matters

Wine Tasting- A sensory experience

Creative QR codes

Sensory Branding Video

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Sensory Brand: The W Hotel

The W Hotel uses purple as a design element as a subtle gesture that adds to the guest experience. In a previous post, we mentioned that purple symbolizes a lifestyle of luxury, royalty, and class – all of which perfectly align with the W Hotel brand. When a guest stays at a W Hotel, they are treated like royalty – the staff anticipates guests’ needs, requests, and strives to achieve perfect guest satisfaction. The W uses purple and other exotic colors to ensure that design elements within every hotel communicate the service guests should expect when staying at the W.

The W prides itself on being an innovative, contemporary, design-led lifestyle brand. The hotels are “a world of sensory experiences,” and the W uses these experiences to create loyal guests and a recognized and established upscale brand. In addition to consistent color schemes, the W Hotel has created a brand language, and offers guests a guide to the terms it uses to describe seemingly ordinary things, like the pool (Wet), restrooms (WC), and elevator (lift). This use of insider language gives people the feeling that they are a   part of the exclusive club of W Hotel guests. Just by taking part in separating ordinary things from the general vocabulary of people, the W lets guests in, and forms a community.

Color Psychology: Purple

Purple is heavily associated with royalty, wealth, prosperity and sophistication. This is because the cost of purple dye was expensive, and only the very wealthy could afford to have purple clothing. Today, purple is seen as uplifting and calming to the mind and nerves.  At the same time, it offers a sense of spirituality and encourages creativity by expanding our awareness.

While viewing the color purple stimulates brain activity used in problem solving, too much of the color purple can promote or aggravate depression in some. It is one color that should be used extremely carefully and in small amounts by those who are vulnerable to these depressed states. Purple also supports the practice of meditation, promoting harmony of the mind and emotions, contributing to mental balance and stability.

Purple combines the stability of blue and the energy of red, and according to surveys, almost 75% of pre-adolescent children prefer purple to all other colors. For that reason, bright purple is a good choice when promoting childrens’ products. Using purple can also lend an air of mystery or magic. Light purple shades like lavender, can be viewed as feminine or romantic. Dark shades of purple can be considered a wealthy color.  Adolescent girls are most likely to select nearly all shades of purple as their favorite color.

Restaurants and Orange

We started this week with an overview of orange color psychology. Today, we want to dive in to how orange can be used in restaurants.

The menu

Orange is a common color for seasonal fruits and vegetables, and signals to  the consumer that the food is fresh. Many orange foods are in season in the summer or fall, especially through the holiday season. The brighter the orange, the more likely the food is in season in summer – like oranges. Around Halloween, pumpkins and sweet potatoes become more popular.

The Design

In restaurants, orange stimulates appetites and encourages sales. Orange is less harsh than red but has many of the same characteristics, so orange is very popular in restaurants looking to create a cheerful, social, energizing space.

Olive and Ivy, a Fox Restaurant Concepts restaurant located in Scottsdale, Arizona, features an orange theme. The restaurant is beautiful, and the rich orange theme mirrors the menu of Mediterranean cuisine mixed with California chic to create a crave-able experience.

Orange may also be used as a prominent color in the menu design, like this fine dining menu from Josephine’s Other restaurants that use orange in their menu design include Hooters and Dave and Busters.

Would you like to incorporate orange into your new menus, brand, or promotional materials? Please, contact us!

Orange Color Psychology

The color orange is warm, inviting, and stimulates two-way conversations because it is both physically and mentally energizing. Orange also inspires motivation and positive outlook in life. Many sports teams use the color orange in their uniforms and mascots, including the San Francisco Giants and Cincinnati Bengals, as orange has been shown to stimulate physical activity, competition, and confidence

Incorporating orange into designs targets a younger audience who are more accepting of the color. Some people see orange as a “cheap” color, so caution must be used when incorporating it into designs.

Orange around the world:

  • Native Americans associate orange with kinship
  • In Japan and China, orange symbolizes happiness and love
  • Christianity associates orange with gluttony
  • Favorite color of the Netherlands, where the country’s monarchy is called the “House of Orange”

Do you have more questions regarding orange and design? Contact us, we’d be happy to answer them!

Let’s face it, people don’t like blue food

If you’re designing a restaurant there are certain colors to stay away from, and blue is one of them. Blue and purple are associated subconsciously with toxins and spoiled food. Why? Blue foods are not commonly found in nature, with the exception of blueberries and a few other rare foods. Our ancestors regarded blue as a warning color, indicating the food was poisonous.

Sight is the first sense evoked by food. If the color of the food is unappetizing, a food can be immediately rejected. Studies have shown that blue food makes people lose their appetite completely, and in some cases become sick. Just imagine eating a blue steak. Gross!

Quick sensory design tip: using blue in your menu design or restaurant’s interior may not be such a good idea! Restaurants that use blue in their theme may be more focused on the environment their guests are in than the actual quality of food. Modern Steak, which has a blue logo and blue tables is a trendy place to be seen in Scottsdale, Arizona. It’s reputation for food however, is not stellar. While many reviews focus on the “great ambiance” and “beautiful décor,” few elaborate on the quality of food. A well-known food blogger in Scottsdale wrote a review complete with pictures of Modern Steak. We have included some of his photos in this post, let us know what you think of how the food looks!

Some diet plans use the reaction to blue to their advantage. Put a blue light in the refrigerator or eating off blue plates.

When was the last time you ate something blue?


Useful Link: Rating Diet Plans

All about the color green

The color green is one of the most familiar colors to the human eye; which isn’t surprising because it occupies the more space than any other color in the visible spectrum.  Psychologically, green has soothing and calming effects, has been shown to alleviate depression, anxiety, and nervousness, and can physically improve readability.

Although green is sometimes associated with negative things, such as being “green with envy” and evil witches being green, across cultures, the color has mostly positive connotations.  In Portugal for example, it signifies spring.  In Scotland green symbolizes honor, and in China, it is emblematic of virtue and beauty. The deployment of the environmental movement further increased its use in public space and has positioned green as an excellent color to embrace for its revitalizing and modern qualities.  When using green to convey a message, be aware of its’ characteristics.  If applied incorrectly it may become bland.  To convey your message, use this kind and tranquil color with due respect of its characteristics, because if applied incorrectly it may become bland or communicate boredom.


  • Green is used in night vision goggles, because the human eye can discern the most shades of this color.
  • Green is popular in recreational clothing and interior design
  • Green’s complementary color on the RGB color wheel is magenta.
  • Green is increasingly used in web design, and when used correctly can draw attention to a call-to-action on a webpage.

Brand Sense

Brand Sense by Martin Lindstrom is a must read for the progressive marketer. Lindstrom focuses on the immense power the five senses have in influencing how consumers feel about brands. He analyzes how the most successful brands today, like Apple and Coca-Cola use sensory branding to entice consumers and create a community of raving fans.

Lindstrom delves into the psychology behind consumer preferences and translates the science into something readable, giving examples of brands that incorporate scent, sound, touch, taste, and sight into their brand experience. This multi-sensory encounter makes the brand more memorable, and increases brand loyalty.

Lindstrom’s other works include Buyology, Brand Child, Brand Building, and Clicks, Bricks & Brands.

If you’re interested in reading Brand Sense, click here to order!