The logo colors of accounting

Harness the psychology of color to build your brand.
Accounting illustration by Pinch Studio

What’s the real color of money?

Accountants are privy to some of the most private parts of ourselves: our finances. Therefore, to be successful, they need to be seen as trustworthy and competent, and to offer us a sense of security. Unfortunately, they are also sometimes stereotyped as lacking in creativity and originality.
How do you choose a color for your logo that represents your accounting firm’s reliability and also helps you stand out from the crowd? We’ve analyzed the color palettes of over 500 accounting logos, evaluated the brand personality traits that accountants want, and consulted color psychology experts in order to help you decide. 

Every color counts (as long as it's blue): running the accounting color numbers

  • Accounting industry popular logo color choices
Accountants love blue. They love it so much that they request it in approximately 2 out of every 3 logo design contests on 99designs. And they’re not alone; blue also appears in approximately 55% of industry leading accounting logos. And what gets added to blue? Most often, black or white. Or, maybe if you’re feeling adventurous, a fractional amount of green or gray.
The misfits: purple, yellow, brown, and pink. Highly regulated, number-driven accountants seem to steer-clear of soft colors with nurturing or earthy associations.

Accountants don’t stray far from the norm across industries, either. Like their Hollywood selves, they are exceedingly pragmatic: they analyze what works and they stick to it.

That being said, the logos from the top four accounting firms tell a slightly different story:
  • Deloitte logo
  • PwC logo
  • Earnst & Young logo
  • KPMG logo
Yes, two of them are blue. But two of them pull their color palettes from some of the least popular accounting colors: yellow, red, and orange. These companies have clearly had success by bucking trends.
The colors you select for your logo have a huge effect on how consumers view your brand. How might a small business emulate the success of trendsetting industry leaders without the multi-million dollar marketing budget?
Once you know what you want your brand personality to be, it’s easy to translate those traits into colors.

It’s accrual world: colors of brand personality in accounting

Start determining your brand personality by asking yourself these six questions:

  • Gender: Is my brand traditionally masculine or feminine?
  • Tone: Is my brand playful or serious?
  • Value: Is my brand luxurious or affordable?
  • Time: Is my brand modern or classic?
  • Age: Is my brand youthful or mature?
  • Energy: Is my brand loud or subdued?
We'll use your answers to see what logo color works best for you.
Your primary logo color is red, the universal sign of excitement, passion, anger and stimulated appetites. Think stop signs, agitated bulls and fast food joints. Looking for loud, playful, youthful or modern? Red’s your go-to.

If you’re going the red route, Pantone recommends using Cherry Tomato to stay on-trend with this year’s palette. Cherry Tomato is a powerful shade of red that packs an energetic punch sure to leave a lasting impact on your audience.
Your primary logo color is orange. Orange is an invigorating, playful color, the love child of red (warmth) and yellow (joy). Go orange to stand out from the crowd. It’s used less often than red, but still packs an energetic punch.

Pantone recommends Flame Orange in this year’s palette. If you decide to make Flame Orange the focal color of your designs, make sure to balance it out with plenty of neutrals to avoid making the end design visually overwhelming.
Your primary logo color is yellow, which is all about accessible, sunshiney friendliness. Yellow exudes cheer (think sunflowers and smiley faces). Choose yellow and your brand will radiate an affordable, youthful energy.

This year, Blazing Yellow made the cut in Pantone’s palette of the year. Use this hue in your design to stay ahead of trend and evoke warmth in your audience.
Your primary logo color is green, the ultimate in versatility. Green isn’t linked with specific personality traits, but it has strong cultural associations. It’s connected to nature, growth, rebirth and in the US … money and prosperity. So, whether you’re in finance or gardening, green may be for you.

This year’s Pantone shade of Lime Green is a little bit different. The vibrant lime hue is a little bolder, a little brighter, and a little more vibrant than more traditional shades of green—which adds a fun, youthful spin you won’t find in more subdued variations.
Your primary logo color is blue, the king of colors. Blue appears in over half of all logos because it represents intelligence, trustworthiness and maturity. Technology companies and large corporations lean towards blue’s steadfastness and security. True blue will make sure you’re taken seriously.

Pantone chose not one but two shades of blue for this year’s palette. Dazzling Blue is a classic dark blue that you can work into any design in any industry. Meanwhile, its sibling hue, Hawaiian Ocean, is a brilliant turquoise that evokes images of the ocean and is thus best for brands that want to be associated with calm, peace and tranquility.
Your primary logo color is purple, a warm and cool combination that blends the passion of red with the serenity of blue. Go with purple to appear luxurious, cutting-edge or wise. There’s just a hint of femininity in there, too.

Pantone lists Fuschia Purple in their palette of the year. It’s more of a pink than a purple, but because this shade is so vibrant, it can inspire feelings of excitement and passion like its parent color, red. Use Fuschia Purple in your design to blend the boundaries of purple, pink and red.
Your primary logo color is pink, which represents romance and femininity, but is also incredibly versatile. From millennial pink to neon magenta, pick pink for a modern, youthful, luxurious look.

Pantone lists Fuschia Purple in their palette of the year, though the hue is more like a reddish pink. Because this pink is so bright and close to red, the bold color choice would be just as effective for any kind of retail design. Use Fuschia Purple in your design to blend the boundaries of purple, pink and red.
Make your brand appear rugged, masculine or serious. Brown is very underutilized, so you’ll stand out from the competition.
Black is the new black. Want to look slick, modern and luxurious? Time to go black. Rather be economical and affordable? Stay away from the dark side.
The absence of color. White is youthful and economical, but can work for almost any brand. As a neutral color, consider white as a secondary accent.
Not quite dark, not quite light. Gray is the middleground of mature, classic and serious. Go darker to add mystery. Go lighter to be more accessible.
Here's how accounting businesses on 99designs define their brand personalities:
  • Accounting industry preferred brand personality traits
From this, we infer that most accountants want to project an image that is serious, subdued and appeals to more mature consumers. These align with the following colors:
  • Accounting industry brand personality-color combinations
Accountants are as consistent in their brand personalities as they are in their calculations!
Based on this, we would expect to see a lot of blue, pink, purple, gray and black accounting logos, and very few that are orange, red and yellow.
In reality, we see a whole lot of blue, with a little bit of white, black, and green. Blue has high associations with being perceived as both serious and mature, and black is both subdued and mature, so it seems right on the money that these two colors enjoyed high levels of popularity with accounting firms.
At first glance, the popularity of green is confounding: it doesn’t rank high with being serious, subdued, or mature. What’s not taken into account, however, is its cultural color association, at least in the United States: money. Cold, hard, reliable American greenbacks are, well, green.  While, on the face of it, green might not inherently inspire competence and sophistication, it has a deeper meaning within our culture, and therefore finds its ways into the logos of financial industries.

Be audit you can be: what colors should accountants explore?

Considering their overwhelming preference for blue, it seems that most accountants make smart, if safe, bets when selecting logo colors.
But what if you want to make a bit of a riskier investment and stand out from the crowd? If you’re willing to stray from the tried-and-true, blue-and-black standards of accounting logo colors, there are several that ensure that you visually stand out, but still maintain a brand personality that’s high in competence and sophistication.
  • Psychology of color meanings
Both pink and purple are perceived as serious, subdued, and mature, yet appear in less than 6% of all accounting industry logos. If you want to play up your intelligence, consider the wisdom of purple. If you’d like to attract a new customer base, nurture them with a pink logo.
You could also follow in the footsteps of these trailblazing accounting brands who have chosen to play up other brand personality traits in their logo color choices.
  • Red Rock Wealth Management logo
  • YZSIDE logo
  • Orza logo
As you seek to design your accounting logo, you’ll want to take your brand personality into account, and think about the traits you most want to convey. Color is a personal choice, but but understanding color psychology in marketing can help you make an informed decision for your small business.
Have we confirmed your choice for blue? Or made you think pink? Either way, find a designer with expertise in your industry to help you bring your idea to life.

Blue collar, white collar, purple collar: what are the logo colors of other industries?

Accounting    |    Agriculture    |    Healthcare    |    Legal    |    Marketing & PR    |    Real Estate    |    Retail    |    Technology

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