KEEPING YOUR BROCHURE OUT
OF THE TRASH
by Cathy Kessler © 2002
Brochures are one of the most popular marketing tools. They have the
potential to be highly effective. However, let me share a startling piece of
information with you. It is estimated that over half of all brochures end up
in the trash without ever being read. Considering the cost involved with
printing brochures, it is important that every effort is made to gain the
attention of the reader immediately and to provide information that will
cause them to act.
There are several key elements to consider when planning your brochure. You
may choose to use the following list of "do(s)" and "don't(s)" as a
checklist during your next printing.
1) Create an innovative, interesting, and applicable cover for your
brochure. If your business centers around allergy-relief products, you might
consider placing a photo of a mother comforting her daughter as the child
sneezes, or a man slumped over his desk with watery eyes in place of your
2) Use photos on your cover if at all possible. Photographs can be
costly, but they are huge attention-getters. Visit "stock" photo sites such
as www.photospin.com to find
professionally taken pictures costing between $9.95 - $75.00. These types of
sites offer a wide selection of photos for use at very reasonable prices.
3) Use full color on your cover. Why all the attention on the cover?
It is the key to having your brochure read. If the cover does not catch the
eye of your prospective client, the rest of the material will go unread. For
this reason, spend the additional money and have your printer use full-color
4) Use your copy space wisely. Most tri-fold brochures offer limited
space for copy (text), so be sure to use that space wisely. Focus on
benefits to the customer, use definitive calls-to-action, and leave at least
one key piece of information out of the copy (such as the price or the size)
so that the reader will be more likely to contact you.
1) Print "homemade" brochures. Brochures that do not portray a highly
professional image are received with a bit of skepticism. The low
quality presentation of a homemade brochure immediately gives the impression
that your business is of low quality, too.
2) Skimp on proofreading. This is without a doubt one of the most
common errors novice marketers make. Typos, the misuse of words, and blatant
grammatical errors are very damaging to your reputation. While most programs
now offer a spell-check feature, these tools can't differentiate between
words like your and you're, no and know, or peek and peak. Not to mention,
their ability to check for mistakes in grammar is inadequate.
3) Try to close the sale from your brochure. Most brochures are
simply not designed to take the customer through the buying process and to
the point-of-purchase. That's not their purpose at all. Brochures are
designed to give enough information to spark the interest of the readers and
to cause them to ask questions and want further details. If you attempt to
include every ounce of information about your product or service in your
brochure, most likely it will be too crowded and overbearing to bring about
Concentrate on creating a brochure designed to do its job and present your
company attractively. By enticing your prospects, and then providing
excellent contact information, you will soon find that your brochure will
open the door to many more sales.
Cathy Kessler is a Certified Professional Virtual Assistant specializing in
proofreading, copyediting, and research. Do you have books, ebooks,
brochures, websites, articles, newsletters, or other documents that need to
be proofread or researched? Visit
http://www.kesslerva.com today for additional information, or
contact Cathy directly at