How (And Why) to Consistently Use Brand Colors In Videos

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Branding covers a whole gamut of theories and criteria.  For this article, we will focus on how to create color palettes to consistently use your brand colors in videos.

Developing a color brand helps with consistency and identification of your business services or products.  When people see consistency in the colors and fonts used in your videos, it starts to subconsciously establish a connection, a feeling of trust.  It helps build on the know, like, and trust factors for your brand.

Types of Color Brands

More than likely, you’ll be handling one of three types of color brands, or maybe all three:

  • Company Branding: This will be consistent for your company, YouTube channel, and across all platforms of social media, print, and videos.
  • Project Branding: This is usually for a specific one-time-only video project but not necessarily for other videos you may be producing.
  • Client Branding: If you create videos for clients, as I do in my business, clients will have their own company-specific branding. (If they don’t have company specific branding, do them a favor and help them develop a color brand.) You’ll want to consistently use their brand colors in videos so that its clear the content represents their brand identity.

Tools to Help Incorporate Brand Colors In Videos

While there are a number of tools available to help incorporate brand colors in videos, I’m going to highlight a couple of my favorites.

The first is Adobe Color CC. I love this tool as it is automatic and gives a big picture view of what colors look like next to each other in a palette.

TechSmith Camtasia’s Theme Manager also has a preview section with an annotation sample and a lower-third sample. However, I tend not to use too many Camtasia library items in my workflow, so I find my Adobe Color CC palette more useful for determining how colors will work with each other. If you use the Camtasia library assets extensively, you may want to try the preview instead.

Although there are many video editing and screen recording tools available, my preferred choice has always been TechSmith Camtasia.

The Camtasia 2018 Themes features lets you easily set, manage, and work with color palettes and fonts during your video editing workflow.

This makes it very easy to incorporate brand colors into videos quickly. No more creating an image file of my color palette, or my clients’ color palettes, to call up from the library every time I needed to select branding colors for each video. No more having to scroll through a huge list of fonts each time to select the font I always use for my videos. Camtasia 2018 allows me to include these elements easily.

Watch the full accompanying training video here or watch sections as we cover the topics below.

Or watch on YouTube- Camtasia 2018 Themes and Adobe Color CC – Create Brand color Palettes for Videos 

Adobe Color CC

I’ll briefly cover Adobe Color CC, as our focus will be the Camtasia 2018 Themes feature. However, if you wish, you can watch this section of the accompany training video, in which I take a deep dive into how to use this free tool to help keep consistent brand colors in my videos. You can find the Adobe Color CC tool here.

Pick Your Base Color

Under the Color Wheel link, you can set a base color to work from, either from the wheel itself or if you already have a base color RGB or HEX code, enter it.

Screenshot of Adobe CC Color Wheel feature

From the Change Color Harmony drop down on the left, you have a variety of possible color palette combinations. These combinations are calculated by the hue you chose as your base color.

Color Harmonies

  • Analogous: Colors that are usually close to each other.
  • Monochromatic: Colors that are different tints and shades of a specific hue.
  • Triads: Three main colors equally spaced around the color wheel.
  • Complementary: Colors that sit directly opposite of each other on the color wheel.
  • Compound: Also known as a split-complementary, are colors that are opposite each other and on the side of a specific hue.
  • Shades: The amount of black that is added to the color.
  • Custom: Create and adjust the palette colors as you see fit.

Use of Color

As you work with setting your color palette, keep in mind how you might use these colors.  What will the color of the font be? Your main base color? What will the background colors be in comparison to your font color?  Colors to use for accents? Looking at the five colors in the palette boxes, how pleasing are they to the eye?

Once you have a palette you like, take a screenshot of it with Snagit and save it to your computer. You’ll use this snapshot to guide you while setting up your Theme in Camtasia 2018.

color palette example

Note:  My favorite way of using Adobe Color CC is with an image and the color wheel. You can learn how to use an image in combination with the color wheel at this section of the training video.

Camtasia 2018 Themes

Okay! Time to set up our first Theme.  If you wish, you can watch this section of the accompanying training video, in which I cover the full scope of setting up, managing, and working with Themes.

Manage Themes

First, click on Import Media, and import the image of your saved Adobe Color CC palette to the Media Bin and place it on the canvas. Then go to File> Manage Themes. Assuming this is your first time setting up a Theme, you will see Camtasia’s Default Theme. You can keep the name Default, or Rename it by clicking on the Theme dropdown, Rename Theme, and type in the new name.

Let’s look at the Theme Manager setup and how I tend to think of each color choice and font choice.  Remember, the Theme represents the colors you will most often use for your branding, your company, a specific project, or a client’s branding.

Camtasia screen shot of Theme Manager feature1. Foreground: This is the text color I most often use.

2. Background 1:  This is the background color I most often use for annotations

3. Background 2:  This is the second background color I use most often.

4. Accent 1: This color is most often used for drawing annotations, borders, lines, and arrows.

5. Accent 2: This is the second most used color for drawing annotations, borders, lines, and arrows.

Annotation Background: I keep things simple and use Background 1 for this as well.

Setting Colors

To set the colors for each section, simply click on the dropdown beside the color.  Click the eye dropper, then select the appropriate color from the screenshot of the Adobe Color CC palette you created.

Since the Foreground will always be your font color, you may want to select white or black, instead of a color from your palette, if this is appropriate for your workflow.

Once you have set your colors, click on the Font tab and select two fonts. Font 1 will be the font you always use, and Font 2 should be distinctly different from Font 1.  You never want to use two fonts that are similar to each other. By making Font 2 distinctly different from Font 1, it can be used to add interest or draw more attention to a specific word.

Click OK once you have set your Theme colors and fonts.

Working with Themes

Camtasia screenshot of theme feature

Using the Theme feature to ensure consistent brand colors in videos is relatively straight forward. Put an annotation on the canvas and in your Properties Panel, at the top, select your Theme to make automatic changes. The color palette you had set up in the Theme Manager — the font for text and foreground color, and the background color — will automatically be assigned to the annotation.

What if you want to use a different color? Simply go to the dropdown arrows for each color section, select a Theme, and a different color from the Theme palette.

The Theme selection at the top of the Annotations panel contains the automatic Theme presets, while the individual dropdowns are manual Theme settings.  If you have more than one Theme — for example a Main Theme, then a Light Theme palette and a Dark Theme palette — you can select any Theme in the dropdown to mix and match as you wish.

A few annotations that do not have the automatic Theme color selection are lines, arrows, and drawing annotations.  Those are usually your Accent colors, which you can select directly from the dropdown Theme menu palette selection.

Of course, at any time, you can also select a color from the slider or color window for specialized occasions, when a color you want is not in a palette.

One of the great things about using Themes is you can have several call-outs on a track.  You can change the colors all at once by highlighting all callouts, then selecting the Theme.

Pro tip: For annotations you commonly use, which have a little more oomph and complexity to them (such as drop shadows, borders, behaviors, and transitions), save those to your library. That way, you never have to create them again, they are always at your fingertips. The most you may have to change is the text within an annotation.

Once you have your Theme / Themes set up, I believe you will find the speed of your workflow increases significantly.

Guest Author: Naomi Skarzinski

As an Online Business Manager/ Virtual Assistant, Naomi helps solopreneurs and small business owners run their online businesses by handling their administrative headaches, so they can concentrate on what they do best, bringing in revenue.

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