You are ready to WOW your clients with a sparkly new brochure, and you are primed to take the industry by storm. Now you just need to show all your potential clients why they should choose you over your competitors. Easier said than done. Spend all the money in the world on fancy papers and gold-foiled emblems, but the content is what gets results and sells your services.
Where to Start
Keep it short and to the point.
Create Engaging Body Copy
Target your content to your specific audience. Mistakes are often made by trying to paint with too broad of a brush. You only have a limited time to catch their interest, so you need to create content that is direct and on point.
Write from a reader’s point of view, not a business owner. Think of questions that your current clients ask you on a regular basis, and answer them in your text. Also, when listing bullet points, think of them more as customer benefits instead of listing a bunch of services that may not be clear to the end user.
A good balance of words and images is preferred and keeps the reader from skipping large blocks of type.
Great photography is not only beautiful and engaging, but it can tell your story, make a great impression, or push a potential client in your direction or to a competitor.
Infographics are another great way to create impact by breaking up long blocks of text and statistical numbers with something colorful, beautiful, and engaging. According to Forbes Magazine, “visual information—when presented clearly—trumped textual information by tenfold, and the study revealed that 90 percent of all information we remember was based on visual impact.” Provide your designer with statistics, sales numbers, production timelines, etc. and let them create something beautiful and eye-catching.
Think about utilizing whitespace (negative space). There is no better way to draw attention to something than the minimalist approach of using whitespace. It’s better than bolding, adding a drop shadow, or the ever-popular starburst! Your eyes are naturally drawn to the singled out area of the page, and it’s easier on the eyes when whitespace is used in body copy vs. forcing large amounts of text into tight areas. The following examples show text at the same size, but Sample 1 has a nice, readable laid-back feel, while Sample 2 has more of a hurried, frantic style.
Map Out Your Content
We will use the good old, tried and true, trifold brochure as an example, but the same principles apply to most layouts.
Panel 1 (cover of brochure when folded) The cover should have impact, and be an attention grabber. It should never be laden with text and information. The most effective designs will simply include a company logo, some imagery, possibly a tagline, and if so inclined, minimal contact info (website and phone).
Panel 2 (the first page seen when opening the brochure) Panel 2 is maybe the second most important panel of the brochure. It usually includes a summary of your business, a snapshot if you will of what you have to offer to the client.
Panels 3–5 (inside panels) This is where the meat and potatoes of your information usually goes. Oftentimes photos, graphics, or varying backgrounds are used to divide the space and keep it interesting.
Panel 6 (back of brochure when folded) Panel 6 is most often used for contact information and a call to action. End your message with a purpose (schedule an appointment, sign up for, act quickly to take advantage of…). A call to action could also work well at the bottom of panel 5, a natural ending point to the information on the inside.
Brochures can be an important part of your marketing strategy. Think of them as a portable sales rep, something to convey your message, or a representation of your company after an introductory meeting with a client.
Your information in the right hands can be a powerful tool for your success!