I have found that people tend to ignore reading a pamphlet which is distributed on a road side. How can one ensure in terms of design and strategy that people read and most importantly understand quickly what the pamphlets try to convey.

Are there any studies which provide guidelines or heuristics on designing pamphlets for public distribution in terms of:

  • Ideal Dimensions of pamphlets
  • Content density
  • Optimal Templates
  • Layout design
  • Suitability and acceptability to specific population type
  • What do you mean by suitability and acceptability to specific population type? I would assume that in general people don't want to get information they don't want to read. I imagine that it wouldn't be too different compared to its electronic counterpart... except that they have a physical presence and are therefore less easy to dispose of. Apparently pamphlets (and flyers) are still quite good in terms of B2B and directed household marketing, but this should be in a different discussion because the last point is probably outside of UX discussion. – Michael Lai Mar 18 '13 at 6:41

You're essentially asking how to design an pamphlet to interrupt someone's attention and get them to read something that they aren't interested in. The answer is that you shouldn't. It's poor UX.

If you want people to read a pamphlet, however there are a few things that you can do (outside of the design of the pamphlet) to increase that possibility:

  • Give them to people that are likely interested in the topic in the first place. I don't care about makeup or beauty care, so no matter how great your pamphlet is, I'm not going to read anything on that topic. However make it about an awesome travel experience and I'm likely to read it. So find places where people interested in what you are promoting may hang out, rather than randomly to anyone.
  • Make sure there is something in it for the reader. Simply telling me something doesn't count here unless there is something of value in it for me. Saying XYZ shop has opened is rarely going to work. However saying that this pamphlet will get me a 30% discount at said shop may work.
  • You generally have one line to attract someone's attention. They are unlikely to read the whole pamphlet before making up their mind. Make your value proposition immediately clear to the reader. If you're giving me a 30% discount at a store, don't put it in the fine print.

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