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Think Pink (and Gold and Purple and White): A Helpful Colour Guide to Cancer Support

24 January, 2018

Cervical cancer prevention week is this week. As you’ve probably noticed, it’s just one of the many times during the year in which you’ll see a specific colour tied to building awareness for cancer prevention. Colour is a highly effective way for cancer foundations to raise awareness and build involvement in their campaigns.

Colour is a powerful way to make an impression, in general; one source suggests that colour can increase brand recognition by up to 80 percent! For your charity, this could translate into greater impact in extending your visibility, building your community or driving donations. This post will look at some of the different colours used to build awareness for cancer foundations and highlight some creative ways that organisations use colour for their cause. Read on for inspiration and ideas for your own charitable efforts!

Pink: Generate Leads with Coloured Materials

While pink is associated with cervical cancer prevention week, it’s most commonly associated with breast cancer awareness, in October. You’ll see pink used in a variety of ways – from awareness ribbons and 5K running vests for cancer walks to charity merchandise such as nail polish and hats. In recent years, people have even been encouraged to hold “Big Pink” parties to drive donations. On its website, Breast Cancer Care offers easy downloads of branded fundraising materials, like posters, invitations and games as well as a complete kit to make it easy for people to participate. The kit is behind a “download gate” which helps the charity generate contact information (lead generation) for future campaign outreach. A win-win!

Gold: Tap into a Prominent Colour

The colour gold represents children’s cancer awareness and takes place in September. Many different charities connect to this colour, including the Children’s Cancer and Leukaemia Group’s “Go Gold” campaign as well as a “Gold in September” organisation in the US. Interestingly, Gold in September was started by an 11-year-old girl’s reaction to the “turn pink” October movement for breast cancer!

Each September, the Children’s Cancer and Leukaemia Group asks supporters to “Be Bold. Go Gold.” The campaign encourages people to host events at schools, home or work to help the organisation “fill its pot of gold.” CLIC Sargent also does a great job tapping in this momentum by encouraging its supporters to wear a gold ribbon to show their support for young cancer patients. Supporters can purchase gold ribbons via the CLIC Sargent online shop, charity shops, and a variety of retailers, including JD Wetherspoon pubs, H Samuel and Wallis.

For your charity, consider ways that you could align with existing, established colours to leverage this established awareness. Be sure to consider timing and align your merchandise and campaign activity for the appropriate month(s).

Purple: Plan Something for Everyone

Purple represents pancreatic cancer awareness, and can be seen in abundance in November. The Pancreatic Cancer Action has a “Shop Purple” store with branded purple merchandise available for purchase featuring seasonal clothing and accessories. It’s all tied to a “Turn it Purple” campaign, a creative way to use colour to gain involvement and build awareness. What’s particularly clever and effective is that the charity provides something for everyone, in a central and easy-to-access place, from instructions for planting purple pansy flowers to purple recipes to photo competitions for individuals or businesses.

White: Let the Numbers Talk

The colour white represents lung cancer awareness, which takes place in November and uses survivor awareness ribbons to promote awareness and share cancer survival stories as a main facet of campaign. The charity offers branded merchandise such as t-shirts, fabric bracelets and lapel pins to help raise money. Another creative and effective idea for your own campaign is to use numbers to demonstrate the magnitude of your cause. Lung Cancer Awareness asks supporters to share stories of hope for the nearly 225,000 people who would be diagnosed with lung cancer in 2016.

Lavender: Support it All

Lavender brings awareness to all cancers. The colour is a nice way of showing year-round support for cancer awareness and survivors. Lavender is a great colour choice for your charity if you’re seeking a cause to support, generally. Consider adding your charity logo on lavender-coloured wristbands, ribbons, bags, bracelets and badges to showcase your support.

Lastly, don’t feel tied to a singular colour. A strong colour scheme can be just as effective. The Teenage Cancer Trust, for example, consistently uses three strong and vibrant colours in its branding and charitable merchandise.

And don’t forget to add some sparkle some to your colour! While cancer awareness is a real and somber cause, a little something special can help engage and inspire your dedicated supporters! Many charitable merchandise items will dazzle with the use of glitter enamel colours. Here’s an example of a special edition glitter pansy badge (on custom backing) that we did for the Pancreatic Cancer Action.

Colour is key for many critical cancer awareness and support charities.  Consistent colour in campaigns and materials can help you make a strong impression that results in greater impact and more donations. Get in touch with us today to talk about how we can help you tap into the many different cancer colours to advance your own important goals!

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