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Best Colors to Use in Business Presentations

Best Colors to Use in Business Presentations

This year’s hot color may be radiant orchid, but does that mean it would look great in your sales presentation? Probably not, but you should know what colors are most effective to use in sales presentations—especially if you’re trying to make a good impression on a new client. The key is knowing what message you’re trying to get across and which colors will accomplish that goal.

If you’re trying to tie the presentation to the branding of your company, it makes sense to stick with your brand colors, those on your logo and marketing materials. If you are trying to sell a new product, use the colors that are in the packaging. You want the presentation’s colors to create an association in the client’s mind.

If you’re trying to convey to the client that you understand “get” them, think about incorporating some of their company’s colors in your presentation.

Other tips to remember about color choices:

  • Bright, vibrant colors can sometimes make people squint and cause headaches if used over too large an area or too frequently. Use these shades sparingly and combine them with neutrals.
  • Remember to use high-contrast colors for easy visiblity from a distance when the presentation is going to be shown on a large screen.
  • Strictly black and white is too boring for presentations—period.
  • Don’t forget about the emotion and meaning behind color. Red can connote anger or power depending on how much of it is used and how it is combined with other colors. It's important to pick the right shade of red, too. Light red can represent love and sensitivity, while dark red represents leadership.
  • Use your presentation program's pre-set color schemes if you’re not sure what color combinations work well together.
  • Search the web for presentations you like and think work well. Try to incorporate some of the colors that are used together.
  • You can’t miss with blues and greens, the colors which have the most wide-ranging appeal.
  • Don’t use complementary colors together (colors that are across from one another on the color wheel like red and green).
  • Do use analogous colors (colors that appear next to one another on the color wheel, like blue, green, and yellow).
  • Don’t use too many special effects like shadows and bright highlights; it will “cheapen” your presentation.
  • Try dark backgrounds with light colors for better contrast.
  • When putting different shades right next to each other, as in a list, don’t jump from dark to light. Using a gradient effect (gradually lightening or darkening) works best.
  • If you use some kind of graphic or picture in the background of the page, make sure it is light enough that it doesn’t interfere with the words and charts.

Knowing that you have a beautiful presentation can ensure that you are able to focus on giving the best presentation possible. Don't let your sales presentation fail simply because you used the wrong colors.


Photo Credit: Wavebreakmedia Ltd/iStock/Thinkstock

Posted: 5/15/2014 3:24:56 PM by | with 0 comments