The Marketers’ Prismatic Palette: A Review of Color Research and Future Directions


Correspondence regarding this article should be sent to: Lauren I. Labrecque, Loyola University Chicago, Quinlan School of Business, 1 E Pearson Ave, Chicago, IL 60611.


Color carries meaning and can influence consumers’ thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. Many disciplines, such as neuroscience, psychophysics, visual cognition, and biology have used new technologies to gain insights in understanding the complexities of color perception, yet there exists relatively little research in the field of marketing. This paper aims to reestablish the importance of color research in marketing, draw attention to the complex nature of this research, and to fuel further investigation and the development of new insights about color as it relates to marketing. The authors offer an integrated conceptual framework centered on the embodied and referential meanings of color and highlight the complexities and nuances that researchers must consider in order to develop this area. Insights from and gaps in the extant literature are highlighted to present a set of questions and propositions for future research in this area of investigation.