It?s a Vibrant Globe: The Meaning of Coloration Across Borders

As children, we are often asked ?what?s your chosen color?? We believed that our color choice says a whole lot about who were, which the questioner will immediately understand its meaning.

But colors, like words, usually do not carry universal meaning. We all have different reactions to several tones and shades depending on how and where i was raised, our past experiences from it, and our list of preferences ? which, like children, can change inexplicably.

The fact is colors carry a great deal of meaning ? but that meaning varies drastically across languages, cultures, and national borders. If you are mindful of some of these differences, it will be possible to avoid embarrassing cultural mistakes when talking about and utilizing colors among colleagues, friends, and clients ? and it will help you to market your product effectively in global markets.

Below, a simple guide to 5 colors around the globe.


In Western cultures, black is associated with death, evil, and eternity. In some Eastern cultures, however, many times, it carries the contrary meaning; in China, black could be the signature color for young kids, and is used in celebrations and joyous events.

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


Red is probably the strongest colors, as well as meanings for most cultures run deep:

China - Celebration, courage, loyalty, success, and luck, among others. Used often in ceremonies, so when coupled with white, signifies joy.

Japan - The traditional color to get a heroic figure.

Russia - Representative in the Communist era. For this reason, it is suggested to become extremely careful when utilizing this in Eastern European countries.

India - Purity, so wedding costumes in many cases are red. Also the colour for married women.

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

Central Africa - Red is really a color of life and health. But in other parts of Africa, red is 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 get the "safest" global color, as it may represent anything from immortality and freedom (the sun) to cleanliness (in Colombia, blue is equated with soap). In Western countries, blue is frequently known as the conservative, "corporate" color.

However, be cautious when using blue to handle highly pious audiences: along with has significance in nearly every major world religion. For Hindus, it may be the color of Krishna, and a lot of of the gods are depicted with blue-colored skin. For Christians, blue invokes images of Catholicism, particularly the Virgin Mary. Jewish religious texts and rabbinic sages have noted blue to get a holy color, whilst the Islamic Qur'an identifies evildoers whose eyes are glazed with fear as زرق zurq, which will 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. here American retailers are leveraging the environmental movement to sell eco-friendly goods, often using green-themed packaging or ad campaigns to suggest a product's compliance with "green" standards. Not so in China and France, where numerous studies 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 hue of the Netherlands as well as the uniform color of the country's famous football team.)

On lack of of the world, however, orange has a better sober meaning: within Hinduism, orange carries religious significance as the colour 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 discover more about that color and it is cultural significance. Also, be aware of color choices since they connect with your business?s campaign copy and graphics ? whether printed collateral, a web site, or advertising campaign. Know your audience in addition to 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 favorite colors at Acclaro are blue and orange.

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