Designing Your Own Leaflet
Deciding you want to promote your business or product with a leaflet can often be a daunting experience. This guide points out some of the key factors you need to consider in designing your own leaflet.
Firstly look at your target audience, who is your leaflet aimed at? Consider the gender and age group of your audience perhaps do some market research on them first. You need to appeal to these people without loosing your corporate identity ensure that your logo and business ethic fits within the design you are looking for. If you are targeting young people then you may want to consider a more modern design.
Next decide what you want the people to do with the leaflet. What are you trying to achieve with the leaflet? A valuable exercise is to include incentives such as exclusive discounts and special offers make people know why they should pick you over the competition.
Remember if you have a limitation on how many people can redeem your offer or how many of the products you have available to make this clear on your leaflet, whilst this can form part of your key message – ‘hurry limited stock’ or ‘ for a limited time only’ it is often best to specify an end date in the small print.
Keep your message simple, don’t confuse your audience with business jargon but remember to keep your leaflet informative and engaging by using headings that get straight to the point. Remember what you want people to do your call to action – buy now, call today, order online. Most importantly don’t forget to include your contact information such as store location, phone number, email address or web site.
One of the most important things is to perform a spelling, grammar and punctuation check on your leaflet. It is recommended that this is done at each stage of your design process and especially before it goes to print, get other members of staff to check this too as it can often be difficult to spot your own mistakes.
Once you have gathered all this information you can start on the design of your leaflet.
Ensure you are using bright colours to attract peoples attention, remember the printing process is made up of 4 colours cyan, magenta, yellow and black (also known as CYMK). This does not mean you can only use these 4 colours in your design, these are simply the colours that will be mixed together to create the colours you desire.
When you supply your file to the printing company they will want the file supplied in this format to ensure that when the leaflets are printed you will see the colours you were expecting to get. If you have designed your leaflet using RGB then you should convert the file to CYMK as often RGB colours do not appear as vibrant when printed.
When deciding on the size of your leaflet whether it be A6, DL, A5, A4 or A3 you will need to allow for the bleed, whilst your design can be resized it is better than you take this into consideration especially if you require a folded leaflet to ensure that each folded panel sits perfectly within the folded area. The bleed is can be a 2-5mm space around the edge of your artwork, this is trimmed off to prevent any unsightly white edges. Check what bleed your printer requires on their web site before you submit your artwork.
You should also allow a 3mm safe area around the edge of your leaflet to ensure that any text or images are not too close to the trimming area as this may result in part of your design being trimmed off in the completion stages of the leaflet printing process. Some printers will also require you to have crop marks on your artwork, you should check their web site for more information.
You should ensure that any images you are using in the artwork for your leaflets are of a high resolution aim for 300dpi you will usually find the dots per inch requirements for images on your printers web site. Using a low resolution image such as those you may find on web sites will result in a pixelated or blurred look even though they may look okay on your computer screen. Also ensure that your images remain in perspective, incorrectly stretched and skewed images do not make for good printing.
Ensure that in the final exportation of your file it is saved into a file format that the printer can work with also make sure that all layers of the leaflet are flattened. Most printers prefer PDF, JPG or EPS. If you are unsure about file formats then check on the printers web site.
If using PDF or EPS files ensure when you export the artwork that fonts are exported as outlines or curves to prevent replacement of type face should your printer not have the font you have used installed on their computers.
Your final check list before sending your artwork to be printed:
- Size – Ensure your design sits well on your chosen leaflet size
- File Format – Check the printer supports the file format your artwork is saved in
- Crop Marks – Does the printer require crop marks around the edges of your design?
- Fonts – Export as outlines or curves
- Images – High resolution and good perspective
- Colours – File needs to be CMYK
- Bleed – Check how much bleed the printer requires
- Safe Area – Don’t place images or text too close to the edge
- Proof Read – Triple check your spelling grammar and punctuation
Don’t forget you will need to decide how many leaflets you want printing, how are they going to be given out will you stand in the street or post them through peoples letter box? How long is your promotion running for? Remember not everyone who receives a leaflet will take part in your promotion but it isn’t possible to tell at the time of handing them out who will and wont make a purchase. Once you have answered these questions you will be able to make a more informed decision about how many you will need.
Once you have sent your leaflet design off to the printers they will send you a final proof to sign off to make sure you are 100% happy with your leaflet. Once you have approved this the printing process will start and it wont be long until you receive your leaflets and can continue promoting your business.
For more information on printing in the UK visit ecolourprint.
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