Designing an Effective Leaflet

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The Basics

There are a number of different tutorials and advice for creating a leaflet or flyer, each of them explaining how to design a leaflet what software to use and even what should or shouldn’t be included. However, the majority of these tutorials and guides forget that it isn’t as simple as just the layout, the leaflet or flyer has to be effective or else it won’t serve its purpose, and won’t engage with it’s intended audience.

Know your Audience

One of the first things that you should take into account when designing your leaflet is the target audience, who are you attempting to interest? Is it for a local focus group or a national campaign where the contact is more generic. Take time to think about the layout and in particular the type face as this could put people off. Do not try to over complicate your leaflet by including to much text, white space can also add impact.

Consider your costs, do you really need to have a glossy four colour printed leaflet? If your target audience is less specific a single colour black and white printed leaflet is more cost effective and allows you to target a wider audience. Consider the thickness of paper and whether you use a gloss coated paper or a matt finish.

Keep it Concise

When writing the leaflet’s content, keep points brief, summarise where possible. A leaflet is an advertisement / promotion; you’re looking inform the target audience of your idea or business services not explaining the life full history. Short but detailed sentences are essential in maintaining the interest of the audience whilst promoting your services.

Headlines and Titles

One of the main focuses in your leaflet aside from images is going to be the headlines and titles. Headline and titles must be kept formal and relevant but should also avoid stereotypes or clichés such as “About us” or “FAQs”. You need to intrigue the audience by presenting yourself as professional but unique; if your leaflet appears the same as every other leaflet similar to your industry what’s preventing potential clients from approaching your competitors?

Including power words in your headlines can attract attention, examples of power words include: free, bargain, discount, earn, exclusive, money, fast, profit, learn, save and special. Using these words within your titles or headlines will draw attention almost as effectively as a well-placed picture due to the association that society makes with these words.


An appropriate image can emphasise a point more effectively than power words or succinct sentences, so when used in tandem with these, the outcome should be an efficient leaflet. Although, selecting a suitable picture isn’t as easy as it may appear to be. When choosing an image it must be relevant to the topic that you are discussing, as well as being engaging without detracting too much focus from the text that it is supporting.

Use a simple picture with a clear meaning; a complicated picture will confuse the message and distort what it is that you are trying to portray. As simple as the image may be it should still be attractive, using vibrant colours without being garish often makes an image more attractive.


If you’re looking for expert advice on printing and digital media get in touch with us at Print and Digital, we would be more than happy to help you with your issues or queries.