Hot tips for your brochures

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Clients often ask if it’s necessary to have a printed brochure if they already have a web site.  Our response? Definitely!  After all, your web site can never take the place of a stylish, well-written brochure that your customers can take away and read at leisure.

The good news is that you no longer need to order thousands of brochures to make them cost-effective. Today’s digital printing processes enable you to order your glossy brochure in small numbers if your budget is tight or you have a limited target audience. 

Why go the brochure route?

  • Brochures are versatile.  They can be handed out, used at trade shows, left in reception, included in media or tender packs and mailed to your customers.  Try doing all that with a web site!
  • Brochures are often much more cost-effective than other forms of advertising, such as magazine, television and radio advertising.  
  • There is a large segment of customers for whom the printed word will always be preferable to electronic media.  Many still prefer to read a printed brochure than online information (which they print out to read anyway!).  There’s something delightfully sensual about handling a well-designed brochure – similar to the difference between reading a ‘real’ book as opposed to an electronic one.  A brochure also allows your company to target those with no, or limited, access to the internet.
  • Brochures allow for face-to-face dealings. As Alysha Dominico of Tangible Words puts it, when we’re face-to-face with a prospect, it’s nice to be able to pass something physical between you. “Even better, with a brochure you don’t have to ‘send someone away’ to go and look at your website. You can discuss what’s right in front of you together, without the distractions of an electronic device.” (
  • Brochures are also quick to produce relative to many other marketing tools. 

 Going ahead?  Things to think about

  • Unless you have an in-house marketing and design department, don’t try to go it alone.  Clients are usually far too close to their own businesses to be able to design their own brochures.  “In most cases, those that do it themselves end up with a brochure that is something between a business plan and a marketing plan,” says Caren Laubscher, managing director of leading design company, Catgraphics.  “They simply cannot put themselves in their customer’s shoes to understand what should be included.”  
  • In line with major design trends today, brochures should be sophisticated but simple and easy to use.  Don’t be tempted to crowd your brochure with irrelevant information or illustrations. Often, the best brochures are those that give prospective customers an appetising taste of the services you can provide – and tempt them to call your company to find out more. As communications company Quiet Storm proclaims: “Your brochure should leave your prospect with a lasting positive impression of your product and a desire to know more about it.” 
  • Spend time identifying exactly what the purpose of your brochure is and then include only the information that will help you achieve that objective.  Your purpose may be to sell a product or service, increase customer awareness of your company, build your brand or inform customers about something of value to them.  
  • The content should speak to the correct audience and it’s therefore vital you understand exactly who your audience is.  The tone as well as the look and feel of your brochure will differ dramatically depending on who you are trying to reach.  
  • Your brochure (s) and your website should share the same look and feel.  Ensure your copywriters, print designers and web developers all work together to create a cohesive image for your company.  (Here at Catgraphics we offer all these services under one roof.  We often develop all the marketing tools for our clients, including brochures, annual reports and web sites, thus ensuring brand consistency and professionalism.)
  • Finally, cross reference.  Ensure your web site address (along with all other contact details) is prominently displayed in your brochure and that your brochure is available for download on your site.