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

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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