7 Must Know Design Techniques for Publication Success
Written on the 7 January 2019 by VB Designs
1. Understand your target market.
The first thing to do before you spend any time planning your publication is to make sure you understand your target market. Possibly one of the worst things you can do is not tailoring your publication to your target market.
If you're struggling to work out who your target audience is, then ask yourself;
If you don't know the answers then you need to find out and perhaps conduct a little market research. Don't be afraid to ask people, even ask your sales team as they will be dealing with your customer on a day-to-day level.
2. Be Relevant and Direct.
Your customer wants to know what you can do for them! Don't use your brochure to brag about you and your business, it will turn customers off straight away. Instead, use the publication strategically, to convince people how your products and services will help them. A reader will spend, on average, 5 seconds looking at the cover of a brochure. These 5 seconds are the crucial deciding factor as to whether they continue reading or not and whether you catalogue is working or not. Peoples' first impression is important. Often it will form the basis of whether they buy from you. Make sure that your publication hooks them in straight away.
3. Make it visually appealing.
People's impressions of your business are formed quickly, so make your brochure looks appealing. It is as simple as this; if your publication doesn't look professional, why should people assume anything different of your business?
4. Use a strong call to action.
At the end of the catalogue give your customer a 'call to action'. That means ask them to do something like 'call now!', 'drop in', 'email us', or 'check our website'. Giving them an action will initiate the sales process. Having a timeframe to do it in may create a sense of urgency and prompt action. You have interested the reader in your product, so now you tell them how to get what they want. If you don't urge your reader to take action then all the time, money and effort that has gone into making this publication has been wasted. Don't assume people will take the initiative and find your number themselves, give it to them, so they have access to it easily.
5. Use eye-catching images to grab attention!
Make sure you use images that appeal to your customers, and that are appropriate to the brochure's content. Use strong images with the message behind them to help your clients see that your business is the best one for them. Always ensure you use high resolution, quality images. Fuzzy/pixelated images don't portray your business in a professional light. Even though a picture is "worth a thousand words", a bad quality photo can say all the wrong ones about your product.
6. Consistent design theme.
Keep a consistent design theme and appearance throughout your publication to create a cohesive publication, reinforcing your corporate branding. Repetition builds brand recognition, and your customers will begin to feel more comfortable with your company. Every brochure or catalogue you hand to a client will leave a lasting impression. If you create the wrong impression, you run a high risk of losing sales. Ultimately, when designing your publication make sure you keep the end purpose in mind - and that is making sales.
7. Limit use of fonts and colours.
Contrast is an important, powerful design rule. We're wired to notice differences, and contrast adds focal points and prevents things from looking boring. You can use different colors, typefaces, textures, size, and shapes, especially if you want to emphasize an idea, but don't overdo it. The last thing you want on your publication is a chaotic mess of excessive fonts and colours. Not only does it look disruptive and distracting, but our eyes have a hard time scanning multiple typefaces. Limit fonts to 2-3 at the most (e.g. heading, subheading and body font.) and 2-4 colours and make sure they are cohesive with your branding, and colour of fonts and background complement each other.