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The last thing you want to do is invest time and money into something that doesn’t really help your business. Sales materials can be excellent tools that support both your team and your customers. But, just like any investment, these tools need to be developed strategically. Here are some questions to ask before you develop your next brochure or leave- behind to ensure that it will help drive results.

How do you envision using and distributing the piece?

Having a clear picture of when, where and how you’ll put the piece in front of your customer will ensure that it addresses the right questions, is in the right format, and fits the flow of your sales process.

Map out how your typical prospect or customer interaction goes and how you would introduce this particular piece into that situation. The best and most effective pieces support a key part of a conversation you expect to have with a customer. Imagine that conversation and how the piece you’re developing will support the key points and address the key questions of that conversation.

Why would someone hold onto the piece?

Building value into the marketing piece you’re creating means thinking through specifically what it will bring to the conversation. Does it address the top questions asked by your prospects or provide an easy way to see and compare features and benefits? Make sure the piece you create is something that provides helpful information that is worth holding on to.

How will you judge if the piece is successful?

It’s easy to fall into a pattern of producing the same type of brochure for each new product or service. Returning to the specific objectives for each piece will help prevent forcing a format or template from restricting the effectiveness of the information it contains. What do you want the reader to know, feel, and do when they interact with the piece? What objections, questions, or common misunderstandings will be addressed? The more specific your goals are, the more clearly you’ll be able to determine if the piece is helping to meet them.

Before jumping into the development of your next sales tool take some time to ask yourself the questions that will ensure that you’ll have a tool that will work for you.

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