Writing For Brochures, with Dr. Glen Thomas
This lecture will help you recognise the purpose of brochures, organise messages, recognise
different message strategies, lay out of brochure text, and examples.
Brochures can be used for a wide range of messages, with a small amount of text. The general idea
of the brochure must be made clear, because the chances are, you only have 400 words. The quality
will vary, from glossy expensive brochures, to the average A4 paper sent through the photocopier
about a million times.
Good brochure text from the client’s perspective, should deliver the content that the client wants,
provides the tone/image you wish to create, get the correct actions and reactions from the reader,
makes sure that the client is easy to contact, clearly identifies the client and will be appropriate for
the intended audience.
From a reader’s point of view, good brochure text will answer their questions, tell them what to do,
be easy to understand, speak directly to their circumstances, provide relevant examples or
guidelines, capture their interest, be credible and concrete, describe the topic clearly (if needed),
and the front will either generate interest or explain the topic.
A good brochure will have good text structure: The hierarchies will be clear, be easy to follow, move
from general to specific information, highlight the most important information, have headings that
are both informative headings, will have an appropriate level of redundancy, and won’t look like
huge blocks of information. Information will be provided in an appropriate order, with a clear and
logical sequence of information, and the text will fit within the design.
Stylistically, you want the brochure to be active, direct, clear, simple, and jargon will only be used
when relevant. Sentences should be kept short and concise, and the structure should be parallel,
and linked to the relevant photographs, which in conjunction with a relevant and interesting design.
It should provide information without too much spin, while keeping the main point of paragraphs
clear. Vagueness should be avoided, and bullet points should be used well.
When organising the message, start with the introduction. How will you grab the attention of the
audience? What will establish a relationship between the brochure and the reader, and what will
make them read? In the main text, consider the order of ideas and how they should be arranged. In
the close, how will you unite the points, and what is your call to action? Remember that the close is