Red is the color of love because it is perceived to be the color of the heart where emotions emanate. And it is a fitting perception because we think of the heart as in the middle of our being where the inner depths of our soul can be found.
Yet if you look closer, the heart is not physically in the center of our body. Sure, the heart may be near the center of our chest horizontally. But, the heart is nowhere near the center of our body vertically. More importantly, emotions really reside in the brain, which is at the top of our body. We just feel the rush of emotions from the area around our heart. All the brain does is give us a headache.
Seriously though, this color association is what marketers study very well and take advantage of in peddling their wares, so to speak. And because we have associated love with the color red, February 14 transforms our surroundings into a sea of red.
Just drive down Katipunan Avenue in Quezon City on Valentine’s Day and you will see bundles and bundles of red balloons being sold by street vendors up and down the road. And why along Katipunan Avenue of all places? Because balloons are within the budget of students at major schools and universities in the area.
Yet, red is not only associated with love. With green, it is used to raise the festive atmosphere of Christmas. The color red is also known to promote better appetite and power through clothing. When used with orange, red encourages people to eat and leave quickly, hence the proliferation of the two colors in fast food restaurants. Red becomes sexy when used with black in clothing. Red represents anger and conflicts, which is why the Philippine flag is inverted in times of war. And red makes people lose track of time when in dimly lit places like casinos and bars.
Red, like all other primary colors, is very powerful in helping to get people to take action with their money in particular situations. And if you think you are being taken for a ride because of the use of red, try to counter it with the other primary colors.
If you are presented with a juicy red and expensive steak, try thinking of the blue sky because blue suppresses appetite. And if you are getting all fired up and figuratively seeing red, imagine yellow flowers as we associate yellow with happiness. But many times, the best strategy is to just get out of the place where color is being used to tempt you or to simply avoid such places altogether.
The battle for our money has long been waged on the psychological level. Historically, the consumer has always been on the losing end because of his lack of awareness of such warfare.
It is about time we take back control of our wealth by battling the forces of commercialism.
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(Originally written by Efren Ll. Cruz, RFP at http://www.savingstips.com.ph)
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