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Marketing Series: Maximizing your Print – Brochures (part 2 of 2): Design Your Brochure for Maximum Impact

maximizing your print - brochures

Get the Most of your Print Marketing Series – Brochures (part 2): Design Your Brochure for Maximum Impact

In Part 1 (read it here), we covered the many ways a printed brochure can optimize your exposure in ways digital tactics cannot. Additionally, we covered some of the best ways a brochure or flyer can be utilized – such as a postcard-sized leave-behind, a co-branding initiative, a mailer and more. Below, we cover how to design your brochure to maximize its potential.

Lay it Out Carefully

How you design your brochure must be thought out carefully. There are plenty of half-fold, tri-fold, full-page templates available on the Internet to help you design your brochures with perfect print-ready precision. It’s a good idea to utilize a half-fold brochure template to ensure that your brochures are printed perfectly. Simply download a PDF. Then, place it in a separate layer in your preferred design platform so you can easily follow the bleed, fold, and margin guidelines. Once designed, you can delete the template layer.

Choose the Right Size When You Design Your Brochure

When choosing the right size for your brochure, you need to take into consideration what you’re going to use it for. Are you hand delivering them? Will they be sitting in a brochure holder or on a reception desk? You need to choose the right size for message as you design your brochure. If you are planning on including a good amount of detail, a smaller brochure size, like a 5.5” x 8.5” or 8.5” x 11” half-fold or tri-fold brochure, may not have enough room for your information and you risk making your brochure come across as overwhelming and cluttered. However, if you are promoting a big sale, or new product, an 8.5” x 11” half-fold brochure could be perfect!

If you design your brochure for a direct mail campaign, there are certain Canada Post specifications you need to know (or you can of course get the highly knowledgeable Minuteman Press Calgary Shepard team to do it for you). The advantage of knowing these measurement or “quiet zone” specs up front can save you hundreds of dollars as you go to print and mail it. The difference of a ½” too tall or too long could bump you from standard “short and long” postage rates into oversize increasing your postage costs dramatically. Similarly, a slight tweak in your print file – as small as ¼” could mean your printer can get more on a page and possibly save you money or print  costs.

Choose the Correct Paper and Thickness

Too thick, it might not fold correctly. Too thin and its longevity and durability could be challenged. After you design your brochure so masterfully, it would be a shame to let the paper choice take away from the artistry. The paper you choose for your brochure needs to be thin enough to easily fold (and to fold cleanly without cracking the paper or the ink), but also thick enough to feel substantial. A non-folded brochure or a half-folded brochure – because it is only folded once – can be a bit thicker than tri-fold comparatives. if you plan on mailing your brochures, you should likely stick to thicknesses at or above 100# Text for durability and integrity in transit.

[Hint: Request a sample of various paper stocks and thicknesses from your local printer. Want one from us, click here and we will happily mail you one out today (or stop by and ask for one).]

Design Your Brochure Using Eye-Catching Images and Colors

Whatever the purpose and campaign you are designing for, you will want to design your brochure so it stands out. To accomplish this, include a color pallet that directs the eye to your brochure while also successfully reflecting your branding. Don’t forget to include contrasting text from that of the background. Make it easy for your recipient to read your message. If your brochure has lifestyle photographs or imagery, ensure the print quality is a minimum 300 DPI or higher. You want those pictures of people, food, animals, nature, etc. to “pop” off the page.

Provide a Call-To-Action and Give Them an Offer

This is a no-brainer but we shed a small tear every time we see a marketing piece with no clear purpose. Make sure you include appropriate offer and call-to-action. An irresistible call to action is key for every type of marketing material. Design the content of your brochure so it gives your audience something to act upon and that this action’s purpose is to drive responses.

Also, you want to include an offer. It doesn’t have to be flashy. It just has to help in breaking through the inertia of non-action. Solve a problem. For example, don’t just say, “visit us today” in your brochure. Make them want to know more. Do more. You want to give your audience a reason to visit you perhaps using timeliness language such as, “don’t miss out on our Fall into Savings Event.” Then, as an additional incentive, possibly include a coupon or a promo code. These further incentivize them to take action. And, as a silver bullet in your marketing strategy, they assist you in tracking the success of the print investment.

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At Minuteman Press Calgary Shepard, we offer favourable prices on high-quality brochure printing. Want help to design your brochures? We are also experts in designing for Canada Post guidelines in targeting, size and quality specifics and mail preparation.  We offer marketing solutions to fit any of your local marketing goals! Click here to contact us to get started on your multi-faceted brochure campaign toda

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Marketing Series: Maximizing your Print – Brochures (part 1 of 2)

blog - brochures

Positioning Your Brochure for Optimized Exposure

Brochures are designed for instant and tangible delivery of your marketing communications. Brochures are ideally positioned to assist your building of a strong customer base. This begins with a locally focused marketing strategy. Depending on your business, going bigger and extending your brand across several communities (or nationally) can be beneficial. However, this isn’t always a possibility if you own a smaller sized business with a local focus. If you forget to market to your community, your community can’t help you spread the word. This is where brochures can come in handy as part of your overall marketing mix.

While online marketing is becoming increasingly popular, the best way to reach your local audience is with marketing materials you can touch, hold, and hand-out. Materials like an interactive, detailed, and professionally designed half-fold or trifold brochure. But before you even begin creating your brochure you will need to choose an effective local marketing strategy.

Face-to-Face and Leave Behind

Creating long-lasting relationships with your neighboring businesses can be a key to your success. Take the time to get to know the businesses in your area. When you make a connection with them see if they would be interested in leaving some of their business cards or brochures on your front desk or entrance area. Then, in exchange if you can leave the same in their location. Be sure to find a complementing – or even opposite non-competing – type of business. Making connections like these with a local business is a great way to boost your brand’s exposure and credibility.

The stronger your company’s presence is locally, the better chance your brand will become recognizable on a community level. Of course, building a local presence and a memorable brand can be successfully accomplished using direct mail. But, because you’re in the neighbourhood, don’t forget about local events or the customers walking in your doors. You can leverage brochures in your lobby, at special events, neighbouring businesses, and even prospects that pass by? You interact with people and businesses every day, so why not let them get to know you and your business a bit better. Hand out your brochures and share your brand. Chances are they will remember their experience and your company. And, now they have a tangible reminder which also solidifies the imprint in their minds bout your business. Knowing you and your business is a start and it moves down the funnel increasing the likelihood of them becoming customers.

Target Your Perfect Customers

As technology advances every day, so do the options to target certain audiences. One of the tried-and-true ways to market locally is by creating a list (possibly to be mailed, called, digitally targeted or otherwise) consisting of people or businesses who matter the most to your business. And are geographically positioned near your business. Give everyone within a certain radius news about who you are and what you offer. For example, say you are looking to promote your restaurant grand opening, you could send out a brochure highlighting key information about menu and location.

Mail them

We’ve mentioned above that direct mail is a perfect tactic to get your brochures out there. You can leverage Canada Post to reach every home or business in a certain radius. Neighbourhood Mail (Unaddressed) allows your printed brochure to be in the hands of your closest potential clients or customers. Did you know the average consumer won’t travel more than 20 minutes to eat out, shop, or visit a place? In fact, the closer they are to a place, the more likely they are to visit it.

People receive over 150 emails or digital messages daily while only receiving on average 15-20 mail pieces each week. You can use this exclusivity to cut through the digital noise and get your message across economically.  Direct mailing your brochures is an affordable way to reach a large audience, easily and efficiently making it the perfect tactic, particularly if your company is just starting out. To make this happen, simply choose the size and prepare your design for your brochure mailers in accordance with Canada Post guidelines and then choose your letter carrier routes or postal codes. Canada Post has tools allowing you to can also target certain demographics within your chosen carrier routes.

Mine Your Business

We mentioned reaching out to a targeted audience near your business’ location. Depending on your business, reaching individuals who surround their ideal customers can be a gold mine for your business. Mining your own customer addresses and reaching out to their neighbours via hand-delivered or mailed brochures is made easier due to the credibility of them physically being able to see the merits of your work. This is particularly successful for visible outdoor service companies such as painters and landscapers. If you already have customers that live or do business at 123 Any Street, then the likelihood is that those living or doing business at neighbouring 125 and 121 might also have need for your goods or services. Choose a certain radius that surround your existing customer address and target accordingly. Send them a brochure marketing that you just did business at their neighbour’s home and you have a special offer for them!

Post Press

At Minuteman Press Calgary Shepard, we offer favourable prices on high-quality brochure printing. We are also experts in designing for Canada Post guidelines in targeting, size and quality specifics and mail preparation. We offer marketing solutions to fit any of your local marketing goals! Click here to contact us to get started on your multi-faceted brochure campaign today!

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7 Print Office Essentials That Will Make Your Return to Work Smoother

Office Essentials

So, you and your team have received the green light to go back to work – that’s awesome! After over a year of the work-from-home grind many of us are itching to slip back into our business casual attire and enjoy a change of scenery from the four walls of our home office set-ups. To help make the transition back to work go as smoothly as possible, we’ve compiled a list of all the office essentials you’ll need to get ready to head back. Got everything you need yet? Keep reading to find out!

Office Essential #1: Calendars

Whether hung up on your wall or displayed on your desk, calendars are an absolute must in the workplace. With the benefits of improving productivity, communication, efficiency, and accountability, the incentive to make sure everyone in your office has one is huge! Add important company dates and promotional photos to your calendars to maximize their value and enjoy the display. Physical calendars have the added bonus of being able to write on them and circle significant dates.

Office Essential #2: Business Cards

A work desk without a stack of business cards on display is like a pencil without an eraser – massively inconvenient. It’s a no-brainer to have a stack within easy reach at work to provide your clients with an easy way to contact you again, plus it makes you look professional. Need help revamping your current design? We’ve covered all the business card basics in our recent blog post Business Cards 101.

Office Essential #3 Letterheads & Envelopes

Writing on customized stationery is SO much better than using any old scrap piece of blank paper or unassuming sticky note. Give yourself some peace of mind during the transition back to working in office by knowing all your paper needs are taken care of. With custom letterheads and envelopes, your communications will radiate professionalism and leave a great impression on your clients.

Office Essential #4: Presentation Folders

Keep all those papers organized and tucked away in style. We can help you print crisp, professionally designed and printed presentation folders to will keep your office in check. After all, they say that the best way to stay organized is by having a place for everything and keeping everything in its place!

Office Essential #5: Ink Stamps

Make paperwork a breeze with the use of a fully customizable stamp! Think of how much time you’ll save by using a stamp to date and sign the papers that come across your desk. No more time tediously wasted filling things out letter by letter or scribbled out spelling mistakes. With the purchase of a stamp, you’ll be able to date documents with a satisfying thump!

Office Essential #6: Mugs

Because let’s be real, your morning coffee or tea ritual is essential. Stock your office with a collection of custom branded mugs to bolster a sense of community and keep the caffeine flowing. Not only will it be a lifesaver to perk you up those early mornings, but it will look fantastic on your desk while you blaze through your to-do list.

Office Essential #7: Business Builder Bundles

We make it easy for you by combining all the office essentials in an easy to order bundle starting as low as $349. Check out our Business Builder Bundles for your office, your mobile office, brick and mortar or manufacturing office space.

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And there you have it! 7 Office essentials that will give you some peace of mind while you transition back to your workplace. Even if you are still working from home, touches like a desk calendar, folders, and business cards will always be useful.

The difference is in the details! Let us help you make your transition to the office that much smoother. Contact the team at Minuteman Press Calgary Shepard today.

We Design. We Print. You Profit!

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6 Inexpensive Ways You Should Use Print to Bolster Your Word-Of-Mouth Marketing

Word of Mouth

Your customers who have an extreme experience when using your products or services can and will share their stories with fellow consumers. This word-of-mouth exchange happens when the experience was very good or very bad – seldom in the middle. When good, they will even recommend the company over other competitors. When not as good, it can really be valuable for you to listen to complaints and determine if there is room for improvement. Interestingly, businesses can use design and print partners like Minuteman Press Calgary Shepard to capitalize on the word-of-mouth advertising they receive – even for those non-extreme customers.

Why is word-of-mouth marketing important in 2021?

In one word: Trust. Word-of-mouth is the primary factor of over half of all purchasing decisions in the past year. If you want to influence people to buy from you, you need to make word-of-mouth considerations as part of your marketing strategy. Trust comes in three ways: noise, skepticism and connectivity.

People face an overwhelming amount of ad noise every day. To avoid being overwhelmed by it, people seek out the opinions and impressions of others in their networks. This allows them to properly decide what’s worth paying attention to.

People want products from trusted companies, but they are often skeptical of marketing ads. But they are far less skeptical of their friends and family and their opinions. They also prefer to consider recommendations and reviews from your existing customers and your brand advocates/ambassadors.

Consumers are connected to each other now more than ever. Word-of-mouth existed long before the internet and social media was ever conceived. But, with so many people connected through social media platforms and online communities, any news has the potential for virality. Experiences – good and bad – travels at an unprecedented pace and scale.

Brand Awareness Spreads Through Word-of-Mouth

Word-of-mouth marketing doesn’t stop after a single interaction between friends. Once someone spreads information to a new person, then that individual will spread it in turn—and on and on. Even if these conversations don’t lead to purchases, they bring brands into awareness. When a company or product is widely discussed, then their reputation builds as they are exposed to more channels where referral marketing is present.

How can you use print to help your company’s word-of-mouth experiences?

Below are 6 inexpensive ways you can use print to foster positive word-of-mouth marketing for your business can include such things as:

  1. Testimonials                
    Companies can gather testimonials from clients with positive reviews to incorporate into their advertising campaigns. These printed or digital word-of-mouth reviews can be printed on various stationery or used as social media posts. Using consumer testimonials can amplify past client opinions to prospects and new clients – particularly those that support the business. This activity can increase the number of people who are influenced by their review.
  2. Flyers/Brochures
    Printed advertisements, such as professionally printed flyers or brochures, can display printed or digital word-of-mouth testimonials to reinforce the features and benefits of a product or service. Adding testimonials written by satisfied customers can help build a favorable reputation for the business to those who are handed the ads.
  3. Customized forms       
    Marketers can use print shops to make customized forms that their clients can complete when visiting your company. Much of this activity has moved online but if you have a business with in-person clients, having success story forms available to be filled in, can allow valuable testimonials to be hand-delivered directly to your business. And, in turn can be printed and distributed to future clients.
  4. Coupons                       
    We can help design your forms to include coupons offering exclusive promotions like discounts as incentives. This in-hand solution can sway the perception of your company to submit reviews of your company.
  5. Direct Mail                   
    Whether it is coupons or flyers or a handwritten postcard, these can also be mailed.
  6. Promotional Gifts        
    You can send personalized corporate gifts to clients with positive testimonials to maintain their perception of the company. Showing appreciation for the kind word-of-mouth reviews may influence customers to continue recommending the business to other people while promoting continued loyalty towards the brand.


Ready to get the word-of-mouth marketing ball rolling for your business? Minuteman Press Calgary Shepard is your one stop shop for everything you need to make an impression this summer. Contact us for a quote today!

We Design. We Print. You Profit!