There’s something about an awesome brochure. It’s intimate. It’s timeless. It’s tactile. Brochures still pack a punch when it comes to establishing credibility among leads. There are enough boring and poorly-designed brochures out there, but you can drive your message home by connecting with your audience in unexpected ways through great design and sharp writing. Hit your brochure design out of the park with the power to educate, increase awareness among your target audience, and inspire action. Here’s how.

Establish the Purpose of Your Brochure

What is the objective of the brochure? Maybe it’s for advertising purposes, highlighting industry news, or making a product announcement. It’s important to know the purpose of the brochure so you can have something to guide your design, as well as your brochure marketing strategy. Identify your target market and method of distribution - will you be delivering them by hand or direct mail? Think about the desired benefits that you would like the brochure to provide. An effective brochure design begins with knowing and understanding the purpose of the brochure.

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Define Your Customers

Who is reading your brochure? What do they like or dislike? In which stage of their buying journey (awareness, consideration or decision) might they be when they’re reading it? You need to identify and understand your audience before you spend money designing brochures. If your brochure is describing a service, what problems might they be experiencing which leads them to needing your service? Make a concerted effort to know your customers and fill in any gaps before you proceed with your design. Consult with your sales department to better understand your customers, their problems, and what questions they ask. Take advantage of their expertise, which could help with your brochure design choices.

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Consider Paper Stock Types

Your choice in paper stock can be as impactful as the images and words printed on your brochure. You may not give much thought to it, but the paper type, including the coating, can influence how customers perceive your business or product. For example, a company may be perceived as more upscale if the brochure is of thicker paper stock and features glossy or matte coating. The thicker stock brochure creates a more professional look and feel, and the coating helps to enhance the visual appeal of the brochure as well. You want your brochure to be eye-catching and perhaps reveal a little about your business standard through its presentation. Paper stock prices vary, and if budget is a concern, you may want to consider the economic options that can still allow you to achieve your objective.

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Pagination Is Important

The layout of any print piece, including a brochure, is crucial during design. You have to consider how the brochure will look when printing is completed. Brochure pagination is essential when trying to achieve the ideal print piece. You can go about tackling your brochure pagination by creating a print layout in a design system, like Adobe InDesign, where you can work with different formats until you find the one that is best for your project. Pagination provides a degree of finesse to your brochure design.

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Don’t Forget to Include a Call-to-Action

A brochure without a call-to-action is unlikely to have a powerful impact on customers. A call-to-action answers the question: "What do we want our readers to do after reading this?" Don’t make them think too hard. Do the thinking for them, and make it super clear, so it’s easy for them to take the action you want them to take. 

The effort you put into designing your brochure equals the gains you’ll get out of it. Think about who your reader is, what they want, what feeling you want to evoke in your readers, what you want to communicate, and what action you’d like them to take. You can hit your brochure design out of the park with a visually appealing print piece that can communicate your message and create an impact. 

Is all this too much for your team to handle? Ironmark’s got you covered. Get in touch with our creative and print experts and see what we can do for your company’s brochures.


Written by Lynne Kingsley

Lynne Kingsley oversees the digital marketing client services team as well as the marketing strategy division for the company. Since joining the company in 2016, she has increased Ironmark’s digital presence by over 700%, establishing a new lead generation mechanism for the sales team. A certified inbound marketing professional and HubSpot agency partner, Kingsley has been helping companies transform their marketing function into fully diverse and streamlined growth engines since 2003. With agency and client-side work under her belt, Kingsley’s strategic experience spans both the B2B and B2C sectors. Prior to joining the Ironmark team, she served as in-house marketing director for several non-profit organizations. Kingsley is an honors graduate of the S. I. Newhouse School of Public Communication at Syracuse University.
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