Tips - Before You Start
Sure you go to a design agency because you are not an expert, or perhaps you don’t have the time or the resources to develop in-house, but without some preparation you can have problems. Here are a few things to conider before you begin.
Define your audience
You need to make sure you have identified who your target audience is. What services are they looking for, what are their problems, and what benefits does your company provide.
Find samples of what you like
Many customers begin their project and have no idea what their brochure should look like. They wait for the designer to come up with concepts and then say, “oh-no this isn’t what we like at all”. Without a good general direction to give your desginer, you are wasting time, and more importantly your money. The best way to get started is to find a few different samples of materials that you like. If you go to a Trade Show pick up a few pieces that you think would work well for your business. Be sure to send your designer any past Brochure Samples or Catalogs that you have done. Why did these work, or not work for your business.
Know your competition
A little bit of research can give a great deal of insight into what other companies are doing. Look online and search out other competitors, perhaps outside of your local area. If your doing your search online, try various search engines to get different results.
Gather your raw materials
Unless you are a start-up company, you probably have a bank of graphics that you use, logos, Product Photos, perhaps descriptions of your business. By gathering some of this raw materials you can send these to your design company up-front so that they can see what they are working with. The most common problem is the lack of Hi-res Images for product shots. We often receive lo-res images from the web, which will not work in a printed brochure.
Many companies come to us and say they have their writing completed, yet when we get it, it becomes evident that it needs a work. Get a second opinion on your Written Marketing Materials to see if it is ready to go.
Here is a Checklist
- What are your objectives for this brochure?
- Who are your competitors?
- Do you have a clear benefits statement?
- Do you have a Standard Size in mind, or Custom Size?
- How do you plan on distributing?
- What quantity do you plan on Printing?
- Do you have corporate standards that you need to follow?
- What Files will you provide that you need included?
- Do you have a realistic deadline?
- Do you have design samples that you like, or do not like?
Remember, a little bit of time upfront will save you time and money!