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For decades, flyers have been a go-to marketing tool for businesses of many stripes. But are flyers still effective in the digital age?
Angela Brown, the “House Cleaning Guru,” says the answer is emphatically YES.
“I am a huge fan of running flyers. My book, ‘How to Start Your Own House Cleaning Company,’ has a huge section on flyers,” Brown said. “Flyers are a great, cheap way of advertising your business, and if you do it the right way, you can have business coming in within a day or two. And lots of people save the flyers. If they are not ready to hire you today, they can hire you when they are ready. And once you have clients, you can work from referrals after that.”
Brown has moved repeatedly, and each time, she’s had to start her business from scratch. Flyers have been a key marketing strategy each time, with similar, conclusive results. “No clients, same business,” said Brown. “New neighborhood, new clientele. Running flyers is an old-fashioned way of doing business, but it’s effective!”
Flyers may seem insignificant, but they get the job done.
Though these simple bits of paper often end up trampled in puddles or buried in a pile of bills, they always grab attention. And, if they’re designed well, they’ll move people to act! (Attend this grand opening; subscribe to our monthly newsletter; visit the new farmer’s market.)
Want to build momentum for your event, promotion, or group? Flyers are a low-cost form of mass communication that can be mailed, personally delivered, or posted in public places. Flyers are fun to create and allow you to experiment with unusual images or layouts.
As you explore the possibilities, here are four strategic areas to sharpen your design:
When you begin your design, clearly identify the theme of your message.
Look for an image or headline that best communicates this, and build your entire design around it. Every flyer should have one thing on the page that is huge, dominant, or captivating. Bright, bold color palettes give flyers punch and attract tons of attention, even from across the room.
After the focal point, your flyer design should have a sensible layout that intentionally leads the reader through the page: left to right, top to bottom, or using visual cues like numbers or a “map” of dashed lines.
Strong subheads should allow viewers to scan the page quickly. And simple, elegant designs bring impact all their own. Keep text to a minimum and space your design elements generously.
Choose one alignment for the entire flyer.
Don’t center the headline, then set the body copy flush left. Don’t center everything on the page, but also squish extra elements in the bottom corners. Be confident in your layouts: try all flush left or flush right. Your design should feel brave and bold!
What should you include in a flyer?
While brochures or foldable flyers come in various formats, a basic rule of thumb is this: the “where” determines the “what.” The delivery of your publication has everything to do with its content. If your piece arrives in the mail to someone on your mailing list, you can include much more on it. If it is for public display, it should be readable at a glance.
Flyers are fun to create because they allow you to abandon restraint. Your flyer will often go head-to-head with dozens of competing pages, so grab their attention and really go wild.
Anything out of the ordinary will make people stop and look, and that’s 90 percent of your goal.