Nonprofit Annual Report Design
Designing your company’s brochure can be a daunting task, but it doesn’t need to be. If you know your main purpose in creating a brochure (beyond “because we need one”), the other items will come easily. One guiding principle that should inform your design is the drive to create a piece that will project confidence and put your organization in a competent light.
When deciding what to include in a brochure, also give thought to what not to include; don’t bombard the reader with too much information. Think of the brochure like a movie trailer for your organization. It serves to highlight the main points, create a reaction or emotional response, and give readers a call to action. That call to action may result in readers eventually donating or otherwise supporting your organization in some way, but the brochure should drive them to call or visit your website to get all their questions answered. Don’t feel like you have to throw everything at them in this one piece.
You might consider highlighting one key part of your organization’s story. This could be in the form of a recent client success you helped facilitate, or maybe a photo essay is the best way to illustrate the story. Find the focal point and build the design around that.
When writing the copy, craft unambiguous headlines so that even a quick skim of the brochure will give readers a firm idea of what you do and exactly what you’re asking of them. Present those headlines in such a way that they stand out by using color and a clean, fresh typeface.
Another way to add interest without clutter is to use blocks of color to visually break up the design. You can do this by adding graphical elements that guide the eye from one point to the next or by putting different segments of copy within colored boxes. Be sure to break up that color by using a decent amount of whitespace, though. Give your readers gentle breaks as your copy travels between subjects.
One of the most popular brochure formats is the trifold brochure, which has six panels that fold up to one-third of a letter-sized sheet. But just because there are six panels doesn’t mean that you have to keep your design segmented into those panels. Try treating the interior panels as one cohesive canvas or at least have elements traverse the dividing lines between the panels. This format also lends itself well to wraparound images, which start on the front panel and reveal themselves on the interior panels as the brochure is opened.
If you’re having the brochures professionally printed, you can ask the printer for cost-effective ideas that will help them stand out a bit. Using a matte paper elevates the quality of the piece without necessarily adding cost. You might also think of unusual treatments for images, such as using black-and-white photos with a color tint applied or creating a full-page collage.
If you’re stuck as to what to include in the brochure copy, use your organization’s FAQs as a jumping-off point. These are the questions people have had, and the brochure is the perfect place to address those issues.
KEEP IT FOCUSED
In a time where everyone has a digital presence, a streamlined brochure becomes an eye-catching tool that points potential donors, clients, and others to your info-packed website. Use design elements that match the image of your organization without overwhelming the reader, and you’ll gently steer them in the direction you want them to go.
If you have publication design needs, please reach out to us for price estimate at 301-933-4062, or fill out our contact form.