Brochures are highly important marketing tools — especially when illustrating a technical development, explaining a step-by-step procedure, or showing a beautiful object. Yet brochures take big bucks to produce, thanks mainly to escalating paper costs. So you had better make them as productive as possible. Consultant Darrell Zahorsky advises:
Pack your brochure with emotional clout
Most people — including even hardheaded executives — buy with their hearts. Then they make up logical reasons to justify their purchases. That is why color brochures ring customer bells. But, Zahorsky urges, make sure that your copy connects with your prospects’ hot buttons.
Make your brochure look substantial
Trying to save money by using clip art and other low-cost graphics in a folder is a good way to shoot yourself in the foot. Use high-quality graphics. Cheap-looking art downgrades the perceived value of your brochure, its information, and its sales effectiveness. Use a weight of page that feels slightly too heavy, as compared to being too light. First impressions are made based on how people feel.
Skip brag and boast
You and your associates may be nature’s noblemen. But prospective buyers want to know what you can do for them, not how great you are. They will not waste time on ego trips.
Make your message easy to read
Keep your design clear and logical. Avoid sans-serif body copy, flyspeck type, reverses, and such. A good rule of thumb: if any visual element in your brochure design draws more attention to itself than to your message, drop it.
Use simple language
Whenever a customer sees a hifalutin word, he skips over it or goes to his dictionary. Either way, you have blown a selling opportunity.
Stress benefits, not features
“Customers don’t care if your Series 700 widget has a multi-function control panel,” Zahorsky writes. They want to know how your product makes life easier and more profitable for them. They are not in the market for a whoop-de-doo drill. They want the holes it bores.
Deliver a single message
Avoid packing your business brochure with everything but the kitchen sink. Zero in on what Rosser Reeves named a Unique Selling Proposition. Your folder is not a catalog. It should not be a customer confusing grab-bag.
Tell your customer what to do next
If your brochure does not close with a pointed call to action, it will not sell.
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