It?s a Colourful Planet: The Indicating of Shade Across Borders

As children, we have been often asked ?what?s your selected color?? We thought that our color choice says a great deal about who we're, and that the questioner will immediately understand its meaning.

But colors, like words, don't carry universal meaning. We all have different reactions to various tones and shades depending on how and where we were raised, our past experiences with it, and our pair of preferences ? which, like children, can alter inexplicably.

The simple truth is colors carry a whole lot of meaning ? but that meaning varies drastically across languages, cultures, and national borders. If you are mindful of some of these differences, you will be able to stop embarrassing cultural mistakes when referring to and utilizing colors among colleagues, friends, and clients ? and this will assist you to promote your product effectively in global markets.

Below, a simple guide to colors around the world.


In Western cultures, black is a member of death, evil, and eternity. In some Eastern cultures, however, issues carries the other meaning; in China, black is the signature color for young children, and is also found in celebrations and joyous events.

White, conversely, symbolizes age, death, and misfortune in China along with many Hindu cultures. Across both East and West, however, white typically represents purity, holiness, and peace.


Red is one of the most effective colors, and its particular meanings generally in most cultures run deep:

China - Celebration, courage, loyalty, success, and luck, and the like. Used often in ceremonies, then when along with white, signifies joy.

Japan - The traditional color for the heroic figure.

Russia - Representative with the Communist era. For this reason, experts recommend to get extremely careful when you use this in Eastern European countries.

India - Purity, so wedding costumes will often be red. Also the color for married women.

United States - Danger (think "red light!") and used in combination with other colors for holidays, such as Christmas (green) and Valentine's Day (pink).

Central Africa - Red can be a colour of life and health. But in other areas of Africa, red is really a color of mourning and death. To honor this, the Red Cross changed its colors to green and white in South Africa and other regions of the continent.


Blue can often be considered to become the "safest" global color, as it may represent anything from immortality and freedom (the sky) to cleanliness (in Colombia, blue is equated with soap). In Western countries, blue can often be known as the conservative, "corporate" color.

However, be mindful when using blue to address highly pious audiences: along with has significance in almost every major world religion. For Hindus, it could be the colour of Krishna, and several of the gods are depicted with blue-colored skin. For Christians, blue invokes images of Catholicism, especially the Virgin Mary. Jewish religious texts and rabbinic sages have noted blue to become a holy color, while the Islamic Qur'an identifies evildoers whose eyes are glazed with fear as زرق zurq, which may be the plural of azraq, or blue.


Until natural foods companies started marketing green beverages as healthy and good-tasting, many Western people thought green food was poisonous. Today, green is recognized as a more positive color. American retailers are leveraging the environmental movement to offer eco-friendly goods, often using green-themed packaging or ad campaigns to indicate a product's compliance with "green" standards. Not so in China and France, where reports have indicated that green is not a good option for packaging.


If the Dutch have anything to say about it, the World Cup will likely be flooded with many different orange come early july. (Orange may be the national color of the Netherlands and the uniform hue of the country's famous football team.)

On lack of with check here the world, however, orange features a slightly more sober meaning: within Hinduism, orange carries religious significance as the color for Hindu swamis. Throughout Southeast Asia, Theravada Buddhist monks also wear orange robes.

So before your inner child enthusiastically talks about your color preference to foreign friends or colleagues, you might want to discover more about that color and its cultural significance. Also, be alert to color choices as they relate with your organization?s campaign copy and graphics ? whether printed collateral, an internet site, or marketing campaign. Know your audience and their respective color conventions so you don?t inadvertently send an unacceptable message. We recommend this useful visual representation by Information is Beautiful.

Oh oh and, our absolute favorite colors at Acclaro are blue and orange.

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