Brochures for Your Business

Do you have effective brochures for your business, products and services? If you don't, you should add brochures to your marketing toolbox!

Brochures should be considered "throwaways" because most people generally don't keep them. Hopefully, people do read the brochure, but most often it ends up in the garbage. As a result, be careful not to spend too much money on developing and printing them.

So why should you even bother having brochures? A brochure supports the information on your business card and increases its effectiveness. In addition, it is a professional way to put testimonials in the hands of all prospective customers.

The goal is to create a throwaway that is attractive and interesting enough to read, but not too expensive. You do not want to spend a lot of money on something that will ultimately become trash.

Here are some tips on creating an effective brochure:

1. Your brochure should be an expansion of your business card. Keep it short and concise, and ensure that it builds credibility. You must choose carefully what information is important to your customers. Most companies put so much material into their brochure that readers become overwhelmed and lose interest.

Size does matter! A small, compact, concisely-written brochure can be a strong marketing tool. It is more apt to be read because it is easy and quick to digest. The function of a throwaway is not to divulge every detail about your product or service, but to stimulate interest and encourage customers to contact you for more information.

2. Always include testimonials. People are skeptical — use solid, legitimate testimonials that prospects can easily check.

3. Give a brief overview of your products and services. Highlight the benefits before you talk about features. For example, this product will save you valuable time and money by reducing accidents and waste.

4. Include information that shows you are a reputable and reliable company. This includes such things as number of years in business, awards, endorsements, education, partial client list, money-back guarantees and memberships such as Better Business Bureau, Chamber of Commerce and professional associations.

5. Do not make exaggerated claims or you will set your customers up for disappointment. Use honest facts and figures to back up your claims. Remember, the number one reason people buy from you is trust. Earn it!

6. The word "free" is one of the strongest words in the English language. Try to use it in your business card and brochure. For example, some variations include free initial consultation, free sample, free trial, free with purchase, etc.

7. Make it easy for customers to contact you. Provide your full address, website, fax, e-mail, 1-800 number, cell phone and even directions if necessary. Accommodate your customers' preferred method of communication.

8. Get your brochures out! Having brochures sitting in boxes in your basement or storage room does NOT do much for your marketing. Make your brochures easily available at your work location, include them in your mailings, distribute them at dog and trade shows, and drop them off in prospects' mailboxes.

Throwaways like brochures should get customers interested in your products and services when they see that the benefits match their needs and wants. The features are impressive and your company's image or philosophy appeals to the customer's thinking. An effective brochure should educate your clients and entice them to do business with you.