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How to Create a Catalog or Even a Magalog for Your Company

Stack of catalogs

In our last blog post, we talked about direct mail and how it “tends to stick around,” meaning that it will often stay in the home for up to a month.

The same holds true for catalogs. Once people get them, they tend to hold onto them, providing your business with constant brand exposure.

But catalogs will only stick around, of course, if they’re done well. In this blog post, we’ll discuss how to create a catalog that stands the test of time, instead of one that ends up in the trash.

Graphic designer

1. Design is key

There are several factors that go into good catalog design: eye-catching imagery, proper organization, well-thought-out layouts.

You’ll also need to tailor your catalog to your audience. A catalog from a massive department store chain will likely look a lot different from a niche clothing maker.  Take advantage of the ability to vary your message to different segments of your audience via segmented runs

2. A picture is worth a thousand words…

Your catalog should be filled with appealing, professional-looking product images. In other words, unless you have advanced photography skills, it’s best to hire a professional to shoot your photos. These images will be the first thing your audience sees when they pick up your catalog. An appealing image will go a long way toward encouraging them to learn more about your offerings and make a purchase.

If for some reason you have to shoot the photos yourself, make sure your camera is set to the highest resolution available. Shoot products individually against a light background, adding a drop shadow to make the images pop.

If for some reason you have to shoot the photos yourself, make sure your camera is set to the highest resolution available. Shoot products individually against a light background, adding a drop shadow to make the images pop.

3. …but words matter too

You’ll need to know all the features of each product, from their benefits to consumers to technical specifications to pricing.

We realize it might be tempting to write paragraph after paragraph of information about each product, but unlike working with a digital publication, space here is limited. Just give customers the information they need to help make a decision. You can always direct them to your website to learn more.  Make the message seem timely like a magazine – thus the term Magalog

4. Format and size

Family reading a catalog

When you create a catalog, make sure you’ve given yourself enough space to showcase all of your offerings, while also highlighting your key products and services.

The catalog needs to be long enough to provide customers with all the information they need, but short enough that it doesn’t become overwhelming.

Make sure you include a table of contents, along with additional informational pages, like a history of your company or perhaps a message from your owner. You’ll also want to make sure you’ve used consistent pagination. Place your phone number on one side of each two-page spread and your website at the other.

5. What worked? What didn’t?

At some point, you’ll need to analyze the performance of your catalog. Look at which products sold well and which ones failed to gain traction. Where were they located within the catalog? Seek out feedback from salespeople and customers.

There’s quite a bit of work involved in putting together a catalog. But you don’t need to tackle it on your own. Let the award-winning team at PDC Graphics create a catalog your customers will want to hold onto.

Some of you may have seen “magalog” in the title and were wondering what a magalog is. Basically, a magalog is a promotional catalog or sales brochure designed to look like a high-quality magazine. In the future, we’ll write a more definitive blog article about creating a magalog that gets results. In the meantime, if you can’t wait to learn more about creating a magalog, gives us a call.

From catalogs to brochures to large-format banners and posters, our team has helped business like yours deliver printing solutions that meet the strictest standards for accuracy, efficiency and quality. Contact us today so we can help you produce and deliver a catalog that will generate superior results for your business.

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