Building brand awareness and letting people know what your new business has to offer are two of the greatest hurdles many start-ups face. You know you need an effective marketing tool, but can’t afford to overspend at this stage of your company’s life. So, what do you do?
Companies across multiple industries are turning to the lookbook — once believed to be firmly a part of the fashion world — to help boost awareness and sales. A lookbook is a fast and effective technique for advertising your brand. Focused on striking images and minimal content, you get the opportunity to show your range in a way that’s sleek, stylish and professional.
To help, here is a step-by-step guide on creating the ideal lookbook for your start-up.
Features of a lookbook
A lookbook is one of several helpful book printing services — but there are a few key features you must consider when designing one yourself to make sure you get the best return on investment…
Appealing, attractive and alluring: a lookbook front cover is your first chance to make a lasting impression. The objective of the front cover is to grab attention, which means you need to think: attractive image, excellent use of colour, and an appealing title to compel the reader to want to know more. Cover pages typically detail the month and year and, if it’s not in the title, you need to have your brand name and logo somewhere here, too.
Navigating your lookbook
How you choose to order your lookbook, including which products and services you place beside each other, can have a great effect on its success. You want to create a good experience for your potential customer when they’re reading your lookbook, and making sure it flows without interruption is essential.
Thumbing through several pages to find what you want is annoying and could turn people away from reading your lookbook, so make sure you place related items together (if someone is looking for one thing, chances are another that is alike will also interest them). If you offer both goods and services, keep these separate, and try to section off connected articles into clear categories to deliver consistency and avoid making your lookbook appear disjointed.
Of course, every lookbook feature plays a critical part in its success, however, a lookbook is essentially reliant on imagery. All images need to be of excellent quality, which means considering props, lighting, colour, setting, and image resolution for each shot. If this is one of your first print marketing campaigns, you don’t want any mistakes.
Also, don’t limit yourself to the same type of photos — ask your photographer to utilise industry techniques. Not every image needs to run border to border and whitespace is a modern photography method used to create a focus point and highlight a particular part of the page — but use it sparingly.
If you want to save more cash and don’t use a professional photographer, you can do these yourself — but just remember to check that you have exclusive rights for everything you include if they aren’t all original images.
All start-ups need to advertise where they are and how they can be contacted whenever possible, so remember to give all these details at the back of your lookbook. Make sure you include social media, shop and email address, as well as a telephone number.
Although a lookbook is primarily a visual marketing piece, it’s nevertheless crucial that you include clever, informative and relevant copy to truly promote your range. Essentially, a lookbook will feature product/service descriptions and — if you’re a start-up — perhaps a brief brand description so everyone knows what you’re about.
To write high-quality content for a lookbook, you must ensure that it’s concise with no unnecessary details. Include appropriate information, so your reader is not left with questions after reading, and make everything as interesting as possible to grab your audience’s attention and keep it.
On top of telling potential customers why they should shop your brand, lookbook content is also used to reach out and build a relationship with your customer. Therefore, you should be professional in your use of language to convey reliability, but try and adopt a chatty tone to come across as approachable. Try to avoid using very long words and sentences — these sound stuffy and clumsy — and keep your product descriptions between 30 and 60 words in length to avoid taking focus from your lookbook’s images.
Preparing and printing your lookbook
After deciding on your images, laying it out as you want it and creating the ideal content for each page; chat to your printing specialist about the type of paper stock and finishes that might look good. You can also ask to see a few samples to get a better idea.
And finally, just before printing; check and double check your lookbook. Proofread your copy, scan photos for anomalies and verify product names and prices.
Then, get your freshly printed lookbook to as many people as you can!