Print Marketing Essentials

Print marketing materials—business cards, direct mail, brochures and more—are a vital element in your business brand. Yes, you need digital marketing too, but for best results, combine both print and digital methods. Consider this: In 2015, response rates for direct mail were significantly higher than response rates through digital channels. According to the CMO Council, 79 percent of customers say they will act on direct mail immediately, and nearly half hold on to direct mail marketing materials for future reference.

Direct mail is not the only print marketing collateral you need to keep in your bag of tricks. Business cards, brochures, promotional flyers, postcards, coasters—they’re all valuable, especially when you connect them to your digital efforts.

Here’s a look at the top three print marketing tools you need in your arsenal: business cards, brochures and flyers.

Business Cards

For all the hoopla about digital business cards, the paper business card is here to stay. It’s more personal than sending someone your digital card and offers a great opportunity to build your brand. Here are some things to consider when designing business cards:Print painting

  • Information to include: Depending on your business, you may not need to include a physical address. (Just make sure the address is easy to find on your website). Do include your name and title, company name, logo and tagline, phone and mobile number, website URL and social media addresses.
  • Size and paper weight: Most business cards are the standard 3 ½ x 2 inches, but that doesn’t mean you can’t be different (especially if your business is in a creative industry). You can also say a lot with the thickness of your paper stock, or use recycled paper to show your commitment to being green.
  • Fonts and design: Your business card is a reflection of your business’s brand and should use the same font and colors. To make your card stand out, you could choose raised, glossy or metallic print.
  • Innovation: If you really want to stand out, create additional formats of your business card for different events and promotions. For example, you could develop business cards on seed packets for an Earth Day event, put your business card on refrigerator magnets or leave space to write a personal note on each one.


Sometimes customers don’t have time to hear your presentation and just want to read about your company on their own time. A brochure allows you to not only share important information about your product or service, but it also brings your brand’s story to life by letting the customer know about your staff, your mission and your goals. Your brochure can be as long or short as you wish, but unless you have a very visual product, you’ll probably want to limit it to a trifold or four-panel size.

Here are some tips to create a successful brochure:

  • Think cover story! What’s going to make your reader open up your brochure? A simple cover image with enticing copy emphasizing the benefits your business offers should do the trick.
  • Once readers open your brochure, they want to be informed but also moved to do more. Make sure you use calls to action throughout your copy.
  • As an extension of your brand, your brochure is a gateway to your website and social media channels, so include that information. Also add phone and email addresses, so customers can follow up with questions or orders.
  • Finally, consider including a coupon as an incentive for the customer to keep the brochure instead of throwing it away.


Flyers are similar to brochures, but a lot less complicated and don’t have to be professionally designed. Remember why you’re creating a flyer in the first place, and use a design that supports that purpose. Flyers are good marketing tools for promoting events, announcing sales and grand openings, offering discounts and more.

When creating your flyers, keep in mind:

  • A flyer is only one page, so simple and brief is key.
  • The whole purpose of the flyer is the call to action, so make it stand out!
  • Be clear about what you want the recipient to do, whether it’s try your service, visit your store or stop by your booth at the local farmers market.
  • A flyer doesn’t have to be 8 ½ by 11. Make it a half or quarter page and save paper.
  • Add an incentive: “Bring in this flyer for 10% off!”

By developing print marketing materials with your brand in mind, you’ll develop an arsenal of marketing tools that all work together to attract customers and spur sales. 

About the Author

Vistaprint logo

Vistaprint provides millions of  business owners with quality, affordable printed and digital marketing products to help them look professional and promote their businesses. Products include business cards, postcards, brochures, signage, apparel, and promotional products.  Vistaprint enables customers to select a professionally designed template to personalize, upload their own finished design to be printed, or integrate their logo or image into a design that’s right for them.