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Creating Effective Flyers - by M. Celeste Chase, AC-BC, ACC, CDP

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Creating Effective Flyers
Why should you invest your time and attention to creating flyers? Consider a flyer as a blank canvas where you can explore your creative abilities while getting the word out about your upcoming event. What could be better? Oh yes, flyers are read, passed along, reproduced, posted up on bulletin boards , mailed or sent electronically to reach the intended audience. Thus, multiplying the success rate of reaching its intended audience.

Flyers can vary in themes from — advertisements, announcements, invitations, updates and welcome notices. Additionally, flyers will promote musical events, fundraiser, craft shows or any other event that has potential to be of public inquisitiveness and enjoyment. What characterizes an effective flyer?

Ingredients of a Good Design
If you’re new to the design process, it can be tough figuring out what kinds of design choices work together to create an attractive yet effective final product. Why do certain fonts go together? How did the great color scheme come into play?

Here are some basic qualities you’ll want to get right on your flyer.
Eye-Catching: If it does not have visual interest no one will be persuaded to investigate what that flyer contains.

Clear Focal Point: Simply put, this is the part of the layout that draws viewers into the design and subsequently into its message. It could be an image or graphic, a headline or promotion, or other text/lettering — but the focal point of a design is usually the thing people notice first.
HINT: make sure your focal point directs viewers to the most important information you have to communicate.

Relevant Imagery: Simple graphics like shapes or icons, a photograph in the background, or something fancier like a custom illustration or hand-drawn typography.
HINT: A visual component that is relevant to the purpose or theme of the flyer will help viewers immediately get a grasp on what the flyer is all about before reading the fine print.

Appropriate Fonts: Typography plays an immensely important role in pretty much any text document, particularly as it relates to flyers. However, in the same way that choosing images requires consideration of a flyer’s purpose, context, and audience, picking fonts calls for just as much care. Because fonts alone can give a design a distinct look or mood, you’ll want to make sure any typeface you choose matches up with the overall style and intent of your design.

Color Considerations
We are visual creatures and nothing’s attracts our attention quite like a splash of color. Colors evoke and engage our feelings and emotions. It creates flyer impact. For instance, warm colors like red and orange are thought to communicate warmth, energy, and excitement, while cool colors like blue and green are considered more calming, nature-inspired, and conservative. Use these qualities to enhance your flyer’s message.
HINT: Colors are known to have tremendous impact and reactive powers and are selectively used to promote mood for those afflicted with Alzheimer’s disease.

Bonus Tip: If color printing isn’t an option, you can still infuse some color into your design by using black ink on colored paper. Being limited to one color ink doesn’t mean your flyer has to look plain. Use imagery in the form of drawings, text fonts, decorative designs, bold borders and pictures to create interest.

Find A Balance
Incorporate strategic use of white or blank space in the layout without text or graphics to direct the eye to the focal point relevant to flyer content. Think of those blank areas as a roadmap that viewers use to navigate visual mapping with ease. Your mission is to lay the intended message out in plain sight without the reader having to take time to decide what the flyer is all about. The more time the reader spends in this way, the lower your success rate will be and the anticipated following.
HINT: The flyer should make its intended communication “crystal clear” at a glance. Too much information crammed onto one page will discourage the reader’s interests.

If creativity is not one of your strong points, you can source your imagery elsewhere rather than creating it yourself, but be selective in this approach as this may likely increase your initial costs. Make sure to search out high-quality options both in terms of form (i.e., no clip art, matches mood/purpose of flyer) and function (high enough resolution for printing, etc.). A quick Google search turned up the following “free” flyer maker sites:


Here are a few basics tips to keep in mind while creating your own successful flyers:
1. Keep your flyer content brief- Look at the overall design and the size of your flyer and the areas where want to leave blank to map the contents out for your readers. Don’t overwhelm your reader by squeezing in a lot of information. Write your content in a concise way. Include only the essentials.

2. Divide your copy into digestible sections- Divide your content into sections with headings to make it pleasing to the eye. At first glance, long paragraphs require more reading time that could turn off your reader.

4. Create a captivating headline- Your headline will always be the first line of text that your recipients will read. Try to make it catchy in order to hook them to read further.

5. Add a call-to-action– Tell your readers what you need. The most important component of your flyer will be to tell your reader what you need them to do after reading the information. “Call Us” or “Order Now” are common examples, but feel free to be creative.

6. Highlight directions & contact information– Make the location and contact information to your event easy to find on your flyer. Directions and contact information needs to be visually bold so as not to get lost in the text nor graphic design of your flyer. The bottom section of your flyer is usually the ideal placement because it is the last text it makes it easier for your reader to reference that information.

7. Proofread your content- Mistakes in your content could be translated as lack of invested time on your part and thus, lack of importance of the information within your flyer. After you proofread ask someone else to review it. The author of the content may easily overlook his/her own mistakes.

8. Limit the font choices- Select no more than two or three different fonts. Using multiple fonts often makes your design visually cluttered. Two to three typefaces are ideal when creating flyers. Additionally, choose fonts that are easy to read, even from a distance.

9. Choose the right paper stock- Flyers may be handled numerous times so choose paper stock that is durable and good quality. When flyers take on a tattered appearance they fail to give the event the feel of “NEW” – “UP AND COMING” attraction that you want to be communicated to your readers.

10. Use high-resolution photos- Low-resolution images equates to unprofessional flyers and lack of attention to details. Additionally, printing multiple copies of the original can take a toll on the quality of the original photo resolution. This is not likely to be a problem, however, when you use professional printing services.

11. Incorporate your logo with the design– If your facility has a particular logo be sure to include that image in your flyer as it represents brand recognition and supports the credibility of your flyer.

1. Think of places where people frequently go and stand idle.
2. Think of your target audience and where you might find them.

Rental car, subway or bus transportation locations– Many of us use public transportation to commute to our destinations throughout the day. Where do they go to pick up a ride?

Local coffee shop- A flyer with a cup of coffee is a perfect match.

School bulletin boards- Ask permission to put flyers in student gathering areas. This is particularly a great location if your target audience are children or parents.

Checkout counters and reception areas- Anyplace where you find a physical counter where people wait is a great place for your flyer.

Community bulletin boards- Chamber of Commerce, town hall, grocery stores, libraries, community organizations

Laundromats- People waiting for laundry will be drawn to read – why not read your flyer?

Show off your creativity and get the word out about your event in a
The Consultants Help Desk is delivered to your Inbox every month. The Newsletter covers a variety of topics all designed for Today's busy Activity Director.   SignUp





Activity Directors Network was founded in 1996 on the idea that we could help create elderly care that dramatically improved the lives of those we all serve. Activity Directors are the key to creating environments that we ourselves would be excited to live in. We envision facilities that feel like homes, not institutions. Facilities that celebrate our resident’s individuality and allows them to live with

dignity, purpose and joy. We believe providing the best education available, with the most talented teachers we can find, is the way to make an impact. Each and every single one of you are the revolution that is changing everything.


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