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Brochure Types

The right brochure for your particular needs depends on several factors:

  • target audience
  • content
  • printing
  • distribution method
  • available budget

Target audience

In general, larger brochures look more corporate, while smaller brochures look more massive. ie. an executive expects a well-done, clear, larger brochure that looks corporate.

Brochures that are meant to be distributed to a wide audience will seek impact. On the contrary, brochures that are very targeted will look for elegance.

If you are targeting elder people, you may want to use a larger font and a more traditional look. Brighter and more saturated colors will have more impact on younger audiences.

There are hundreds of different factors a graphic designer will take into account when creating a brochure for a particular audience.


The lenght of the verbiage is one of the most important factors. Same happens with images and any other graphic elements that are part of the content (and not added for aesthetics). Before choosing the right brochure, you should have an idea on word count and number/dimensions of images/diagrams/tables/other graphic elements you need to include.

3.5" x 8.5" content panel (ie. standard tri-fold) Standard tri-fold (6 panels, 4-5 of them content) 8.5" x 11" content panel (ie. standard bi-fold) Standard bi-fold (4 panels, 2-3 of them content)
Graphics intensive 75 words per content panel 300~600 words total 150 words per content panel 500~1,000 words total
Typical brochure 150~250 words per content panel 600~1,200 words total 250~600 words per content panel 750~1,800 words total
Text heavy 250~400 words per content panel 1,200~2,000 words total 600~900 words per content panel 1,500~2,500 words total
Compressed, text-only up to 600 words per content panel up to 3,000 words total up to 1,500 words per content panel up to 5,000 words total

In the case of wide diagrams or images, brochures with narrow panels are always more difficult to work with. However, they may be the correct choice if the graphics can span several panels.


Brochures with flat open sizes up to 17" x 11" can be printed in both digital and offset (traditional) printers. Digital printing is great for small printing batches (less than 200 copies) quickly and affordably, but it may turn out to be very expensive for large quantities. Digital printing has limitations regarding paper stock and special inks, but most of the standard full-color designs can be printed in minutes.

All other brochures need to be printed in the traditional offset printers. Offset printers have high set up costs, meaning it only makes sense to print at least 1,000 copies.

There are a lot of factors that must be weighted in to choose the correct brochure type for each particular case. Brochure design experience is key to the correct choice, so please ask our representatives and they will be happy to recommend the best brochure format for you!

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