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Make your Charity’s fundraising flyers work harder...

A fundraising event flyer plays an important role in the advertising, publicity or awareness of your charity’s activities. A5 is a traditional leaflet size because it’s handy and can be handled easily in quantities by your distributors. However, generally alternatives range from A6 (148 x 105mm) to A3 folded (420x297mm flat). A flyer sets out to inform, sell and persuade. And this means flyer design, content and graphic layout are paramount. A good fundraising event flyer is simply one which grabs attention, conveys its information clearly and ultimately burns its message into readers’ brains.

Effective fundraiser flyers use words and images to create an image in the recipient’s head. For an event, it’s got to get them excited! For your cause, you must pull the heart-strings and inform the positive impact your non-profit has on your beneficiaries. Anything in between will likely disappoint your readers, and your hopes. Use these NetPrintNFP guidelines for designing flyers and your results will be better than most, irrespective of your design skill. Draw on NetprintNFP’s free flyer designs as you see fit or perhaps commission an exclusive design for your non-profit’s next campaign. Remember NetPrintNFP can be your non-profit’s home for all that is local marketing and brand related. Contact us here.

Hint #1: Think & research.

Determine the purpose of your flyer and its intended audience. Is it advertising an upcoming fundraising event? Is it asking for positive action right now? Does it need a form area? Is it part of a wider awareness campaign? People are so used to having thousands of advertising images thrust at them every day. So much so that ‘flyer numbness’ is a real risk! Poorly conceived flyers and/or campaigns can be ignored by everyone. So locate and observe how other people are doing it in your area. Can you piggyback on other events? For example, distribution at a local match or town fete might hit a profile of willing participants or donors for your event. For a week or two take note of what attracts your own attention. How do people try to reach you at home or as you travel through your town? You will learn a great deal.

Hint #2: Establish your creative concept

The 'creative concept' may already have its roots from a centrally funded campaign by your organization. If not, then you will need to brainstorm some ideas. If your non-profit charity has a set of brand guidelines these will also need to be taken into account. (Remember NetPrintNFP helps any organization deliver brand control into its community).

Good flyer creative catches the eye AND tells the tale. It’s no good having a strong visual if your words are hard to read or work against the picture. For example, if you’re promoting a fundraising dance you have to decide whether to advertise the basic ‘feel good’ factor of the event alone or attempt to include the reasons why your organization is fundraising. In local advertising cryptic flyers are best avoided. You do not have the time and money to ‘build’ a message which grows over time.

Look at other people’s work for inspiration. Don’t copy, but get inspired. And don’t forget to reference your discoveries from Guideline#1.

Hint #3: Flyer Layout 101

Remember you have less than 3 seconds to draw in the attention of your audience. Before they reach for the nearest bin! If you are using a familiar image let it have centre stage. That might be a well-known person, place or activity. You will need permission from whoever owns the images or use to discover thousands of images under creative commons licensing(?).

The eye journey starts at the upper middle position then tracks top left to bottom right.

Balance your space. Don't feel like you need to fill every inch of your flyer with something. Use space around your graphics to help the focus on your key image and headline. Who wants to read a cluttered flyer on the front? The majority of your audience won’t make time to read anything if they don't know what you’re saying in under 3 seconds. You must earn the right for them to read details on either the bottom of the leaflet or on its reverse.

It is not easy to read lines and words that are solely in capital letters,

e.g. HEADLINE STYLES vs Headline Styles.

Be careful with logos. Bottom to bottom right is where people expect to find them.

Don’t put text too close to the edge of the paper or too close to the edges of boxes.

Use contrasting colors. Use bright colours against a dark background and dark colors against a bright background. But complementary colours are going to please the eye most.

Display just one point of contact, but make sure it repeats on both sides of your flyer– and make it obvious.

Hint #4: Font choices

If your non-profit charity works with brand guidelines (register with NetPrintNFP now to do this!) then font choice will already be assigned for your flyer design. Else, a good rule of thumb is to use two fonts in your flyer creation, and at most three. Bold and extra bold sans-serif fonts are best for large headlines and consider unusual fonts only if they are clear and readable. If you have a body of text narrative on your flyer aim for at least 10pt in size and serif fonts will read most easily.

By using variations in font weight, size, spacing and colour you will have plenty of flexibility for your flyer design.

Hint #5: Keep it Simple, Stupid!

‘Less is more’ is a good principle in any advertising. And a well constructed fundraising flyer agrees with this on one side but has the attraction of allowing description and detail on the reverse. A common mistake is to put too much information in one block on a single side of a fundraising event flyer.

Get the important message out there in as few words as possible. People will read your support information if you’ve won their attention in their first 3 seconds of possession. Make support lines imaginative and exciting – phrases can really help sell a fundraising event. For example, a small venue can offer "an exclusive, intimate performance'. A one night event can be "your one and only chance to see this'. Avoiding the trite or cliché is, of course, desirable.

Think about what it is about your event that will actually make people want to come? What are the unique selling points of your event? What might it have that no competing event offers?

People like to have assurance that an event will be good before they spend their time or money on it. Quotes from respected local people can help with this. Or perhaps show evidence to support your event is well reputed e.g. ‘now in its fifth year’; ‘over £5000 raised last year’.

Hint #6: Flyer readability & sizing

Wherever your fundraising flyer is distributed it has to work hard for you. The glance/scan/read principle applies in all situations. Try out the ‘3 second test’ on friends to see if your leaflet design is effective. Do they recall its main message? If not, you may have too much information in too small a space. One or the other will have to give to achieve higher response rates. NetPrintNFP knows that budget is at the heart of many decisions. But decisions need to be taken for the right reasons. Don’t compromise the strength of your initial message for the sake of a few extra pounds. Moving to a larger format or a 2nd side may increase overall cost by as little as 10% but allow you the freedom to really get your message across. You may even have space to explain the great works your organization is raising money for.

You may need to choose flyer sizes which will work well in your distribution channels. If people are door-to-door leafleting for you then they will not appreciate anything larger than A5. Paper stock weights between 80-150gm are further factors in this decision (see HINT#8). Extra weight means more refills per street and a less enthusiastic, less productive volunteer corps! You may also have the opportunity to have points in shops, restaurants or hotels. Make sure you have some leaflets which fit any holder sizes!

Hint #7: Preparation & Timing

'Allow yourself enough time' is valuable advice so rarely taken. Aim to start your promotion 3-4 weeks prior to your event. That means your flyer design thinking and research should have begun 6-7 weeks prior to your fundraising date. You’ll be surprised how long designing your publicity takes, particularly if several people need to be involved.

Artistic spats besides, getting ‘sign-off’ is important. But forgetful people have the knack of eating up time in spades. Even with flyers, when you might only have 2 sides, you can't proof too many times. Get others to check it and then read it backwards. And look for errors on line transfers, e.g.

God Save The

The Queen.

And all too easily mistakes creep in, even if not as catastrophic as this:

Errors on flyer

Production itself can be as short as 24 hours. But allow 5 days in your plan. Else you could end up paying higher premiums from some suppliers for very fast turnaround. And remember, it takes time and organization to reach all your distributors and locations.

Hint #8: Production & implementation

Make sure you pick your suppliers well when planning your non-profit flyer campaign. Make sure your quote includes all possible costs inc. delivery. NetPrintNFP is transparent about pricing and you can use this information to ensure you know you are getting a good deal, wherever you go. 130gm stock is a minimum advisable for 2 sided leaflets. 80- 100gm is acceptable for single sided leaflets.

NetPrintNFP automatically takes care of file type and preparation, making sure

  • Your documents have the correct bleed.
  • Your colours and pictures are converted from RGB to CMYK.
  • Your document achieves the highest quality resolution (up to 300dpi)
  • All fonts used are going to print out correctly as your proof
  • Your fold lines are in the correct position.

But if you are supplying to a third party make sure you are clear on the exact file format required.

Some printing services only offer event flyers with large set-up fees, which makes the task of ordering the right amount at outset difficult. NetPrintNFP does not. The advent of digital print machines makes small runs (below 250) viable and NetPrintNFP will not charge set-up fees on any reorders. So there is no reason for you to feel constrained by someone who tells you to over order. However, with larger quantities (>1000 leaflets) an extra 500-1,000 for between £10-£20 extra might well be worth it when set against your own time, inconvenience and ability to respond to requests quickly.

Additional accessories like leaflet holders may get the best out of your potential distribution locations. So don’t forget to order them at the same time if you need.

NetPrintNFP offers fundraising and event flyers to interact with donors, sponsored fundraisers, friends, volunteers, employees, benefactors, corporate partners and the general public. We simply help you nurture those people who would have a positive impact on your community and its ambitions.

Choose NetPrintNFP fundraising flyers for your next Charity event

Your Brand & content – always protected, and always fully invested for maximum impact

Value Flyer Pricing – no set-up fees, pricing from just 9p!

Best practice Knowledge Distribution – show your community what has worked well at local level

Innovation & Inspiration - new ideas to keep you fresh in your local communities

Reliable – high quality, fast and dependable flyer production.