How to design an effective brochure

How to design effective brochure

September 19, 2013 | By: Cintia Stela
Category: Graphic Design, How to | Tags: , , , ,

A well-designed brochure can be an effective marketing tool. Similar to a sales presentation, your brochure must:

  • have a compelling introduction (cover),
  • inform the reader of the key benefits,
  • highlight a valuable offer, and
  • close with a strong call-to-action.

Otherwise, it just won’t get read. Remember: the more attention your brochure gets, the more people will read it – and respond to it!

A brochure is also judged by its cover.

The cover of your brochure is the first thing your readers will see. Make sure to get them exited about what’s inside:

  • Write and design the brochure with the target market in mind.
  • Include a headline with a strong selling message (call attention to a problem) and a captivating graphic.
  • Position your product or service as the solution to that problem.
  • Experiment with different design, format, cuts and folds – but don’t discount simplicity.

Engage the reader

Take the reader’s point of view. Engage him/her with captivating elements that support the presentation of the key messages.

  • Create a powerful opening: identify a potential problem, offer a solution, position your company as the best provider of that solution, and present three key benefits.
  • Enhance the presentation using rational support: charts, diagrams, maps and samples.
  • Also use emotional support: photos, illustrations, examples, and stories.
  • Add some trust with testimonials, statistics, awards and endorsements.
  • Address any anticipated questions (enclose a Q&A or a special text box).
  • Increase the reader’s interest by emphasizing how they are falling behind without your service, and follow it up with your solution.
  • Provide the reader with all the information he or she needs to take the next step in the buying process.

Keep the skimmers in mind

Even with all the work you’ve put into your brochure, many readers will only skim through it. So we need to create both a short and a complete version of the content.

  • Start writing only the headlines, subheadings and calls-to-action – for skimmers.
  • Once these are in place, fill in the details of each topic – for those who read it all.

Include a valuable offer

The offer will entice the reader to act and respond to you. It can be as simple as more information about your product or service—or it can be a premium, such as free samples or free reports. Just make sure that your offer will be of interest to your target audience.

  • Choose an offer that will lead into your sales process.
  • Clearly indicate which steps your reader should take.
  • Substitute vague calls to action with something more compelling.
  • Create a logical next step for after the reader receives the offer.

Make it easy for them to respond

The process for your reader to respond to your offer must be simple and convenient. 

  • Make the offer easy to find – highlight it.
  • Create easy-to-follow instructions.
  • Give the reader multiple ways of contacting you.

Check if you’ve covered all the musts

  • Ensure that design and content are consistent with the target audience.
  • Don’t complicate the design at the expense of clarity.
  • Remember to inform, persuade, and close.
  • Always motivate the reader to do something.

It applies to more than just a brochure

The strategies above can be used for the development and design of other marketing pieces, not only brochures. Make sure you covered the musts, and you’ll have a much better chance of achieving your goals.

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This blog offers marketing, advertising and design best-practices for small business owners and entrepreneurs looking to be more effective and successful with their businesses, online and offline.


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