Font Psychology: How to Pick the Right Typeface for Your Brand

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font psychologyUndoubtedly, content is of utmost importance in marketing copy. However, aside from the quality of writing, visual aspects also have a huge impact on how an audience perceives marketing messages.

Typefaces, in particular, can influence how readers interpret ads, products, and even websites. These graphical representations of text come in a wide range of fonts, point sizes, weights, colors, and styles. As design elements, they can trigger different emotions; hence, you can use them to cleverly instill a mindset that supports your company’s branding.

It’s not simple to make or finalize a choice that’s exactly right for your brand. In fact, it can take continual experimentation and even minor design changes to select a typeface that best matches your brand’s identity.

Let’s take a closer look at how typeface and font psychology works and how to choose the most suitable for your marketing efforts…

Font Psychology: What is it?

Font psychology is the study of how different fonts influence ideas, feelings, and behaviors. It involves the intentional use of specific character styles and sizes in content to elicit a desired effect in the viewer.

In addition, font psychology is often applied in marketing for various goals, such as increasing sales, promoting trust, providing pleasant customer experiences, and building brand loyalty. The principles can even be used to enhance information assimilation for educational purposes.

Fonts vs Typefaces

Although the two are frequently used interchangeably, they are not synonymous. The distinction between a typeface and a font can be perplexing to many, as both terms are used to refer to sets of displayable text characters in certain styles.

Fonts and typefaces have always played major roles in design and branding. This being said, understanding the historical connotations of these terms, as well as their modern applications, can help you accurately explain what you’re looking for in a design.

Classifying Typefaces

A typeface includes visual elements for characters, such as the presence or absence of a serif, the weight and balance of the letters, spacing, and the height difference between upper and lowercase letters.

They are classified according to their particular style. Below are some of the most frequently used types:

  1. Serif Typefaces: As the name implies, these typefaces include fonts whose symbols and letters have serifs. Serifs are small strokes or lines attached to the end of bigger strokes in certain characters. Common examples include Garamond, Bodoni, and Didot, which are popular for their posh, classic vibe.
  2. Sans Serif Typefaces: In contrast to the former, characters written in sans serif typefaces do not have serifs—hence the word sans. They tend to give a more relaxed and easygoing tone. Examples include Helvetica, Verdana, and Futura, to name a few.
  3. Decorative Typefaces: Decorative typefaces are lively, eye-catching text that feels a little more niche than regular serif and sans serif fonts. Common choices include Outlaw and Morris.

These typefaces are often unsuitable for body text because they can be distracting and difficult to read. This is particularly true in smaller sizes, as they can be strenuous for the eyes. While an elaborate decorative typeface may work well for your headline or outdoor sign, it can be a turn-off for readers when used on a menu, brochure, or landing page.

  1. Script Typefaces: These typefaces are known for their semblance to cursive handwriting. They are terrific for conveying the uniqueness of your brand. Some great examples are Kuenstler Script, Kauffmann, and Brush Script.

Script typefaces, like decorative typefaces, can be tough to decipher at smaller sizes. Limit your use of them for your logo, headlines, and signage. A good rule of thumb is if your material includes heavier text, it’s best to use a serif or sans serif font.

Difference Between Typefaces and Fonts

As previously defined, a typeface is a set of design features for letters and other characters. In comparison, a font is its variation in weight, style, and size. Moreover, a typeface family is formed by the variations of a specific design type. A font family, on the other hand, is a collection of fonts that are related in some way.

To explain it more simply, Helvetica is considered a typeface family, Helvetica italic is an example of a typeface, and Helvetica italic 10-point falls under the font category. Additional identifying features of fonts include roman, bold, italic, condensed, and similar variables.

Still confused? Here’s a simple way to distinguish between typefaces and fonts. Hover your mouse over the drop-down font menu in Google Docs. Notice how several selections have a small arrow to the right? Hover over this arrow to view several options such as light, semi bold, and bold. The main choices are the typefaces, while fonts are the sub-options.

If you already understand the difference between the two, let us dive more deeply into how you can choose the right typeface and font for your business.

Which Fonts are Appropriate for Which Business?

It’s helpful to be aware of the many typeface types, but how can you choose between them? Selecting fonts follows the same procedures as picking a color palette for your business. They should match your brand’s identity and reflect the emotions you want your viewers to feel.

Your target demography, products and services, industry, and overall brand identity of your company are all important things to consider. To begin, decide which of the following categories your organization belongs in:

  • Formal or informal
  • Modern or classic
  • Light or dramatic

Use a thin script or serif font as your main font and a sans serif with variable line weight as your secondary font if your brand is more serious and classic yet with a lighter presence. A bold display and sans serif typeface, on the other hand, can be a good match if your brand is more informal and modern but with a dramatic tone.

Here are other examples of how certain typefaces can be used:

  • Serif: Because this typeface is traditional and timeless, it evokes a professional impression and may be used for both dramatic and light branding.
  • Sans Serif: Since this is the most modern and legible style, it’s appropriate for lengthy body text and blog posts.
  • Script: Although it appears conventional and has a historic aesthetic, it can also be employed in modern Moreover, it can induce feelings of luxury and sophistication, which makes it a suitable font for product labels, especially for goods that target a female market.
  • Display: This typeface is best used at a larger size. It also has the most diverse design among the typefaces discussed. Furthermore, it can evoke a wide range of sentiments and emotions but is best utilized in dramatic branding.

Does Color Also Matter in Branding?

Colors may be considered simple, yet they play an important function in marketing. Branding is where the first impressions of potential customers are formed, so it’s important to make sure the colors you select represent your business well. Additionally, a good color scheme is key to creating a good corporate identity.

Colors express emotions, feelings, and experiences, so they are more than just visual assistance. There are meanings behind certain colors, and it is beneficial for businesses to be aware of this because picking a color scheme can impact how consumers perceive a brand.

What is the Significance of Font Color?

Color psychology focuses on studying the effects of colors on human behavior. It emerged many years ago when Egyptians researched the effect of colors on mood and used them to support holistic development.

Renowned Swiss psychiatrist, Carl Jung, thought that colors and people have a special relationship, stating that humans “have a universal, bodily response to color stimulus.” He also remarked that “colors are the mother tongue of the subconscious.”

Overall, color psychology has demonstrated that hues can influence human behavior and perception. Thus, it’s a must to strategically choose the best colors for your fonts.

Aside from understanding the meaning of different colors, business owners should take the following factors into account when selecting a color scheme:

Appropriateness

Business owners must be aware of the message they send out, making sure the color complements the company’s core values.

Type of Copy

Ensure that the color suits the type of copy and marketing materials you intend to create. For example, it’s best to avoid bright and vivid colors for blog posts, and instead, choose calmer hues that are easy on the eyes. Also, muted colors may not work well for signage since the goal is to attract attention.

Target Market

It is also critical for business owners to understand their target market and to who they offer their services or products. The color must be appropriate for a specific demographic’s preferences for effective targeted marketing.

Also, the colors should suit the type of action you want your prospects to take. For example, if you want leads to make a purchase or sign up for a subscription, use an eye-catching color for the call-to-action.

Consistency

Keeping your brand’s color scheme consistent can help you build recognition over time. It also fosters trust, loyalty, and familiarity in your customers. Furthermore, consistency can help make your brand stand out among your competitors.

Font Psychology: Something to Ponder on

Before potential customers read your marketing copy, they are more likely to notice the aesthetics. Therefore, it’s important to carefully select visual elements like typeface, font type or size, and color so you can grab and retain their attention. This way, there’s a higher chance that prospects would take the time to read and engage with your content.

How helpful did you find this article on font psychology? Feel free to let us know or add anything extra in the comments section below. 🙂

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