A Complete Guide to Brochure Printing
The internet has opened many new doors with regards to marketing techniques, and its impact on marketing strategies in recent years certainly can’t be ignored. However, it has failed to force print marketing media – brochures in particular – into the pages of history. The reason for this is simple; print is memorable.
The downside to electronic marketing, ironically, lies in its immense popularity. With so many companies choosing to market themselves digitally, it becomes hard to stand out. And, similarly, consumers become so bombarded by electronic media that they tend to find it forgettable, purely as a result of the amount of media they encounter in a single day.
Brochures, on the other hand, represent a less disposable form of marketing. The impact created by a beautifully designed brochure, and produced by leading brochure printers, is second to none and can be responsible for a lasting impression that goes on to create sales.
So, if you want to have your business stand out and be equated with the quality and craftsmanship of your print marketing media, brochures are certainly the right choice for your next campaign. But, before we explore the ingredients of an expertly designed brochure, let us first look at why brochures are still important marketing media.
Why Brochures Are Still Relevant in the Digital Age
Online marketing has become popular because of its immense reach, which certainly counts towards its strengths. But brochures have strengths of their own which online media simply can’t match. The following factors are responsible for keeping brochures at the forefront of relevancy in terms of marketing media:
1. Brochures are More Memorable
Unfortunately, statistics are a little on the shy side when it comes to the effectiveness of print media campaigns. But this is probably only as a result of the fact that online analytics are far easier to access and are thus the stars of the statistics game. However, it is well-known that print media finding their way into the hands of consumers works well for marketing.
When compared to digital media, brochures have a better chance of being kept. Deleting an email is all-too-easy, but the act of throwing away a brochure requires more effort, making the brochure that much more memorable, and that much more effective.
Because they’re harder to dispose of, brochures tend to be kept by their recipients. And, as such, each time the holder sees the brochure – stuck to their fridge, lying on their desk or possibly in that desk’s drawer – they are reminded of your company. This visibility is crucial for top-of-mind marketing. In essence, a brochure is like an ongoing email marketing campaign, yet is far more refined in its subtlety.
3. Brochures Automatically Target Audiences
Speaking of ongoing email marketing campaigns, many internet users are starting to explore the benefits of ad-blockers and the like, simply to get away from the onslaught of marketing material that awaits them every time they open a web browser or log into their email inbox.
Brochures completely avoid being seen as irritating marketing material by existing in the physical world – separated from their competition. If a brochure is picked up, it is usually by someone who is interested in its contents. This means that brochures effectively take care of their own audience targeting and save your company money that would be wasted on impressions that lead to dead-ends.
4. Brochures Better Represent a Brand
Digital media isn’t limited in terms of design elements, but its output is always through a display – be it a smartphone, tablet, or desktop display. This does place certain restrictions on the design of the marketing material, understanding that the final product will usually be seen in rectangular form.
With brochures, on the other hand, there are no limitations on the ultimate shape. This allows a company to explore different options in terms of paper shape and size – customising its brochures to suit its brand ethos perfectly.
5. Touch Makes a Big Difference
Studies have shown that tangible media is more easily retained in a person’s memory. With this in mind, media that can be picked up and carried around (like brochures) stands a very good chance of being an influence on the person making contact with it. Unlike the hundreds of hyperlinks with which online users make contact each day, the physical feeling of a brochure creates a unique experience.
How to Design the Perfect Brochure from Scratch
Now that you have a better idea of the benefits of brochures as marketing media, you’ll no doubt be wondering how to design a brochure that can effectively meet all of your marketing goals and still suit your budget. Well, the truth is that this is a relatively simple task if you pay attention to a few fundamental design techniques.
Since the design process is different for everyone, we don’t think giving you a step-by-step guide would be in your best interest. Instead, we would like to supply you with some design tips to be incorporated into your overall design when you need them.
So, to ensure that you create a visually pleasing brochure that has the ability to convert readers into customers, remember the following:
1. Printers Make a Huge Difference
There is no point designing a stunning and unique brochure if the printers are going to ruin its entire effect. This is why it is important to decide on the best brochure printers for your project before you get started.
We promised we wouldn’t give you a step-by-step but, if we were to do that, this would be step 1. It is important to find some high quality printers and chat with them about the possibilities of your brochure. This way you’ll start off with a clear idea of what you can accomplish and what won’t be possible.
You’ll also have a good idea of the types of materials available to you. A choice between many different materials, printing processes, and laminations for the cover and inner pages of your brochure might inspire fresh ideas for your design.
Deciding on the right brochure printers before starting the design process is a bit like looking at a plot of land before designing a house. The elevation changes and undulation of the land determines whether the house needs split levels or perhaps stilts. Similarly, knowing which materials are available to you before designing a brochure will help channel your creativity.
2. Keep it Simple
There is a lot to be said for simplicity, especially in an era where minimalism is equated with wealth and success. Gone are the days of regency-style décor – if you walk into the house of a high-level businessman nowadays, you’re likely to be greeted by modern geometric simplicity. This is because clutter has no focal point and people respond well to focal points.
With this in mind, a simple brochure design can radiate these same qualities on behalf of your business. A tastefully designed brochure cover featuring monochromatic colours and perhaps a slightly embossed logo can have a bigger impact on a prospective customer than a bright and cluttered cover, as difficult as that might be to believe.
In essence, the style of the brochure speaks volumes about your brand before the reader even picks up your brochure. It all depends on the light in which you want your business to be viewed.
3. Use Shapes to Create Individuality
The traditional tri-fold brochure design can be effective if paired with some interesting visual elements. However, there is room to carve out a completely unique feel for your brochure through the addition of interesting shapes.
Geometric cut-outs that break away from traditionalism are sure to get your brochure noticed. But, in addition to uniqueness, these design elements create eye-catching areas of the brochure, which are excellent locations for important information and CTAs (call-to-action).
Shapes can also be used as physical representations of design elements. So, if you’re using geometric shapes as graphics for your brochure, you could add a few matching shapes to its pages. Triangles, for example, are easy to create with folds and can be extremely effective as visual elements.
4. Think in Three Dimensions
If you really want to get creative with shapes, you could ditch the traditional approach to brochures altogether and create a brochure that uses folds to become a three-dimensional object. With the recent 3D film trend (not to mention Virtual Reality) proving that people aren’t as satisfied with two-dimensional media as they once were, creating a three-dimensional brochure is certain to catch their attention.
It may take a lot of extra planning and the application of some mind-bending visualisation (not to mention a few tutorials), but creating 3D folding brochures is completely possible. For inspiration you needn’t look any further than a few origami tutorial videos on YouTube.
5. Create Inspired Inserts
You might find that you have more to tell people about your company than your brochure can effectively accommodate. After all, you don’t want to bog your readers down in heavy text that they will likely skip anyway, and simultaneously ruin the visual effect of your brochure.
The obvious choice here is to include a CD or DVD containing additional information, videos, and other promotional media. But, simply inserting a disc into a sleeve at the back of your brochure has been done so often that many people might not go the effort of ever using it. Instead, find a way to include this additional information that urges people to view it. Use those children’s pop-up books for inspiration on this front.
Before You Begin: How to Create Functionality without Compromising Creativity
The above tips should have your creative juices flowing, which is a great thing. However, before you grab the bull by the horns and start putting ideas down, remember the fact that your brochure is marketing material first, and art second. Don’t get so carried away with the design elements that you forget about the parts of the brochure that will actually create sales.
With this in mind, consider the following:
1: Planning before Execution
After speaking to your brochure printers, decide on the elements you would like to include in your brochure. Next, create a rough draft on a piece of paper, being sure to include notes on all of the different design elements you intend to use. This is very important for the graphic design process. It will ensure that you don’t paint yourself into any corners with regards to the design and that you approach each step logically.
2. Writing Great Copy
Once your brochure has used its visual elements to get itself in the hands of your target audience, it is up your written copy to convince your readers to buy your products or services. So, even though it might be seen after the visuals of the brochure, it plays an extremely important role in the overall effectiveness of the brochure.
Write your copy and then (http://quickcreative.com/5-things-to-leave-out-of-your-brochure-design/) remove textual clutter, whittling it down until it is precise, concise, and completely engaging. This will allow you to see how much copy you need to include in your brochure and help you choose the right visual elements to compliment it.
3. Drive Your Readers Online
While brochures might connect your brand with a fresh audience, don’t neglect digital marketing altogether. It is still important to have a sense of consistency across all of your marketing channels, so use your brochures to drive your readers online through the addition of social icons and your website address.
4. Remember Your Purpose
As stated earlier, it is easy to get so carried away with your design elements that you lose sight of your overall purpose; which is the creation of sales. Don’t let this happen.
Put yourself in your readers’ shoes and think about what would most inspire them to learn more about your products. What would they want to see, feel, and read about? Once you answer these questions you’ll be designing for your target audience, which is exactly where you want to be.
Reach a New Audience with Brochures
Brochures represent a fantastic opportunity for your company to market itself, given that their physical presence goes further towards embedding your company’s name and ethos in the minds of your target audience. But, to truly capitalise on this, you need to explore unique design tips and, of course, make use of the best brochure printers in the industry.