Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Leaflet Part 2: How to write a leaflet that will be irresistible for people to: a) Pick up, b) Read & c) Act on

Back to Part 1  (Intro).

Part 2: How to write a leaflet that people will ...
Pick up

I had my leaflet on biodiversity. 
Called "Biodiversity"
I emailed it to several interested friends.

One suggested calling it "Conserving Biodiversity". He said: "I think it would be good if the title was active (ie we need to do something) rather than passive ( ie we can read it for information or general interest)

One person wasn't keen on the  animal Word-Search - but I LIKED that - word searches are fun.
Along with a sentence about Harlow Carr, Harrogate, hosting the national Rhubarb collection (possibly  not the most vital sentence in World Conservation affairs, I decided  I would leave them in for the moment.  They could be removed in future if I was desperate for space.

But would people REALLY go for a title Biodiversity?

I made four versions of the leaflet and took them to coffee morning.





and biodiversity

I asked seven different people.

It was a really good exercise - I discovered - a chance to discuss the topic in a non-teaching, non-propogandist way. I recommend the exercise.

Only seven people, but I got a 100% rejection of Biodiversity.

Well that was pretty definite.

Two people balked at Conserving. "Sounds like the Conservative Party"
"Sounds like conserving jam"

I had to wait a few minutes before I could interrupt two more people to show them the  leaflets. They were busy discussing their holidays.. one to Africa - to a game reserve where they discussed the stupidity of other tourists there - and were concerned about the effects of tourism on wildlife. 
(Carbon footprint? I wondered - but at least they would have sympathy for the topic of the leaflet)

"Could do with a more lively active picture on the front" said one, referring to the peaceful heron, "maybe an otter".. and then very helpfully:

"But what are you trying to achieve?"

Ah, what am I trying to achieve, beyond a respectable leaflet?, and something that will make them want to pick up the leaflet and read it.

I thought of my advice to a speaker at last weeks' Speakers Club "It is very important close to the beginning of a speech to give the audience a "What's in it for me" - tell them why it is worth their listening to you.

Had I done this for my leaflet?


I would do that. 

And as advised to so often at Speakers Club I would write 3 points (not 2 or 4 ).

And write them big and     LEAVE WHITE SPACE

Here is a picture of an early version  and the latest version of the leaflet so far.. 


 I would take them with me to the Mothers Union Meeting at Horton in Ribblesdale the next day
where I would be the guest speaker leading a workshop on Lichens of Horton churchyard.
What would their comments be?

Come back for Part 3 next week.

Back to Part 1  (Intro).

Forward to Part 3 (Leaflet irresistible to read)

See Green Christian/Christian Ecology Link Website where a "current" version of the leaflet is housed

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