Pink and blue are two colors that have highly gendered connotations. While it has not always been the case, today, blue is considered a masculine colour and pink is considered a feminine colour. This is used extensively in branding to make it clear who a product is aimed at.
Take, for example, Barbie. This iconic doll is aimed at young girls and pink is used extensively in the branding – from the logo to the packaging. Barbie has had several makeovers in her time, getting new “jobs”, new dolls of different ethnicities, new friends and new pets, but she has always loved pink and little girls love her.
Pink Grows With Girls
Girls grow up seeing pink as “their colour” and that is something which stays in their minds as they get older. Cosmopolitan is one of the main “grown up” magazines that adult women read and even they have embraced pink. They choose a less over the top and more luxurious way of using the colour than Barbie does. Instead of saccharine, overpowering pink they opt for a paler and more understated way of using the colour. The message is clear though. The Pink Parcel is a “period-inspired” subscription box with beauty products, chocolate, pads and tampons, herbal teas and little gifts. It’s a feminine gift box designed to make you feel good at that time of the month, and the pink is used to say ‘soft’.
Pink isn’t always ‘soft, though. Victoria’s Secret has the PINK collection which aims to be cute and empowering. They’ve owned the word PINK in a way that some subcultures own words that are slurs when used by outsiders. To those who wear Victoria’s Secret, the PINK brand is theirs and it means fun, passion and confidence. Interestingly, not all of the items in the PINK brand are even pink. It’s not the colour that matters here, it’s the word, the brand, and what it means to the wearer.
A Part of Your Identity
Marketing is a powerful tool, and the messages that brands put out can quickly become a part of a person’s identity. This is something that shows in everything from smartphones to websites. Take a look at how a woman customises her smartphone, then how a man does. There are often significant differences in the colours, images, and fonts used.
Even online casino makers have picked up on this. Pink Casino is an online casino with a range of bingo, slots and table games and a pink theme. Many of the games are the same as the ones found on other casinos, but the pink theme makes it seem more accessible to women who sometimes find the blacks, blues and dark greens of more traditional online casinos off putting and less easy to identify with.
Consumer electronics maker LG has taken a similar approach to branding. Their logo uses a strong pink. Not too feminine, and not too bold, but still a departure from the silver, white or black used by other tech brands. LG’s philosophy is based on Humanity, their logo reflects that, and their sales figures do too since LG has a universal appeal.