Brochures have long been staple marketing tools, and they remain so even in the digital age. You can print more powerful brochures by including interactive features designed to engage customers and motivate them to take the next step in the purchasing process. The following details seven ways you can make your brochure interactive.

1.    QR codes

The bane of marketing to some, easily-tracked and useful tools to others, QR codes can be successful when paired with the right type of brochure marketing campaign. Your brochure could feature a QR code that takes potential customers to an informational web page, mobile app download, coupon code, newsletter sign-up, or social media “like” page.

A good scenario would be a QR code that, when scanned, lets customers view a video demonstration of a product or service. Brochures can’t tell the whole story, so giving customers a chance to learn more on-the-spot can increase response rate. Add in a discount for scanning, and your brochure can become a powerful interactive sales tool.

2.    Augmented reality

AR still has a ways to go, but more and more companies are introducing AR into their print marketing campaigns. Brochures are perfect for AR, because you can develop a layout that works directly with your AR features.

Examples include:

  • A model that “comes to life” with AR
  • An AR feature that showcases benefits of a specific product model. Both Ford and Lexus have employed this approach
  • An interactive recording, similar to the iPhone “record player” created for Kontor Records

Of course, you can tailor your brochure AR campaign to match your brand, customers, and campaign goals.

3.    Social call to action

Ask customers to “like” or “follow” you on your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other social media pages; then, reward them with an incentive such as a discount coupon, special access to useful features, or some other desirable offer that motivates response.

A social media call to action placed on your brochure is a simple, yet effective, marketing tool that’s also cost-effective for small businesses that might not have the budget for AR or an interactive mobile app.

4.    Interactive tracking

If your customers have a need to track the physical location of something – a car, a child, a pet, etc. – you might consider printing a brochure with an interactive tracker. The tracker is applied to the thing you want to track, then paired with a mobile app that offers real-time location tracking.

One great example of this is a campaign launched by sunscreen company Nivea. The company created a magazine ad with a built-in wristband tracker. Parents could place the wristbands on their children to track their locations on busy beaches. The concept was perfect for a company that sells protection from the sun’s harmful rays. You can employ a similar idea for your business, delivered via brochures.

5.    Scan ‘n call

Perhaps the most basic, and even most useful, of all interactive brochure features is the ability for customers to simply scan your phone number to call you from their mobile devices. You know getting customers on the phone is a great way to address concerns and turn a “no” into a “yes,” so offer an incentive for scanning your (trackable) phone number right from your brochure to connect with potential customers and turn them into long-term, loyal brand champions.

6.    Custom folding

Custom-folded brochures can reveal your unique selling points in precisely the right order to motivate the greatest response. Custom-folded brochures can be printed in nearly any shape and size, with just about any panel configuration, so you can create desire with each turn of the page.

Use custom-folded brochures to walk your customers step-by-step through the sales process, revealing ever-greater features as they flip each panel over, for an interactive marketing experience that doesn’t require digital collateral. Here are some examples of custom-folded brochures.

7.    Make it a game

Gamification sounds like a buzzword, but the concept has huge merit: customers love to turn their shopping and brand interaction experiences into games. You can make one side of your brochures a game board that becomes interactive when a smartphone or tablet is placed over it.

One example is this ad from Sonera, a 4G company in Finland that wanted to promote its fast wireless speeds. Sonera created a print ad that doubled as a “speed test” board game when coupled with an iPhone. You could adopt a similar concept for your brochures.

If you want to wow potential customers, engage them, generate more leads and, ultimately, revenue, it’s time to consider printing brochures featuring the aforementioned interactivity.