Google Docs is easy-to-access free software that can come in handy when you want to make a brochure. It also includes ready-made templates, but you can also create your own by playing around with the different format settings. Use columns, tables and text boxes to personalize your unique brochure.
Part 1 of 3: set up the document
Step 1. Decide on the look of your brochure
There are many shapes and sizes. Do you want one the size of a letter, with multiple pages or a brochure that folds in three with a size suitable for an envelope? Do you want more text or more images? Sometimes it is fashionable to start with a rough draft on a blank piece of paper before jumping into it.
Step 2. Go to http://docs.google.com in your browser
If prompted, sign in to your Google Account with your email address and password
Step 3. Click on the blue ➕
You will find it on the document called "Blank Document" at the top of the page.
- If you would prefer to use a template rather than creating the brochure from scratch, click Template gallery in the top right corner of the window, scroll down until you find the section Job and choose the model of your choice.
- If you don't see the models at the top of the page, click ≡ in the top left corner, then click Settings and tick Show recent models on the home page.
Step 4. Select New Document in the top left corner
Step 5. Type the name of your brochure
Step 6. Click File → Layout.
This will open a dialog box that allows you to adjust the sheet size, page orientation, and margins.
Step 7. Adjust the layout
Choose it according to the brochure you want to create.
- For example, if you are creating a standard double-sided brochure that folds in three, you should change the orientation to Countryside, leave the page size on Letter and reduce the margins to 5mm on each side, as a 1.5cm margin will waste a lot of space on a folded brochure.
Step 8. Click OK
Step 9. Select Format from the toolbar
Step 10. Choose Columns → More options.
This opens a dialog box where you can choose the number of columns in the document and the space between each one.
Step 11. Choose the number of columns
Do this depending on the type of brochure you want to create.
Continuing with the example of the brochure that folds in three, you need to set the number of columns to 3 and the margin to 1 cm, because when folded, each column will have a margin of 5 mm on each side
Step 12. Click on the top row of the first column
Step 13. Select Table from the toolbar
Then choose Insert Table.
Step 14. Click on the first square (1x1) from the drop-down menu
Step 15. Select the table border
Drag down the first column.
Repeat these steps for each column in the brochure
Part 2 of 3: create the covers
Step 1. Find the front panel
Because of the way 2-sided printing works, the location of the cover panels will change depending on the number of pages or folds you have.
The front of the tri-panel brochure is the far right column on the first page
Step 2. Click near the top of the front panel
Step 3. Type the title of the brochure
It is usually text that is wider and thicker than the text in the rest of the document. The title of the cover is generally larger and thicker than the brochure. In general, it is made to catch the eye or provide information.
Use the tools on the toolbar to adjust the style (bold, italics, underline), color, size and alignment of the title, as it is usually centered
Step 4. Add the cover image
A good image on the cover is important to illustrate the purpose of the brochure, as well as to arouse the reader's interest.
- To add an image, click Insert in the toolbar, then click Picture…
- Select or take a photo, then use your mouse or trackpad to move and resize it as you want.
- Click the option to adjust the text. In the example of the brochure with three panels, you need to adjust the text around the images, that's why you need to click Adjust text at the bottom of the image you are inserting. The option Break text will stop the text at the top and continue it at the bottom of the image. This is a viable option, especially with small signs on a three-panel brochure. The option Align means the image will be pasted into the text, which may cause formatting issues in the brochure.
Step 5. Find the back panel
Because of the way two-sided brochures work, the location of the reverse side may be different depending on the number of pages or folds you have.
The back cover of a three-panel brochure is going to be the middle column of the first page
Step 6. Click on the back panel
Step 7. Add contact or tracking information
The back panel of the brochure often includes information about next steps or how to contact the company that published the brochure. Sometimes it is designed to act as an envelope so that the brochure can be sent directly by post.
Step 8. Add an image
The images on the back of the cover allow you to get an eye-catching product that makes people want to look at it.
Part 3 of 3: Create the interior panels
Step 1. Click on the first interior panel
This is where you will start to add text and images to the heart of the information you want to convey.
For the three-panel brochure example, you'll use the leftmost panel on the second page or on the first page, as these are the ones readers will see first when they open the brochure
Step 2. Type or paste the text in the boxes
Step 3. Make adjustments to the text
To do this, select the text with the mouse and use the tools at the top of the page.
- Headings above articles are usually in bold or italics, and sometimes a different font is used than the main text of the brochure.
- The main text is usually in a size 10 or 12 font. Headings are often larger.
- Use the alignment buttons to adjust the text.
- Text in columns is most often left aligned or justified.
- The titles are more aligned on the left, in the middle, or justified.
Step 4. Add images
Images help you focus on what is written while keeping the reader's eyes moving on the brochure.
- To add an image, click Insert in the toolbar, then click Picture…
- Select or take a photo, then use your mouse or trackpad to move and resize it as needed.
- Choose the text adjustment option. For this example, you want text around the images, that's why you need to select Fit text around image at the bottom of the image you are inserting. The option Break text will stop the text above and continue it below. This is also an option to consider, especially on the smaller brochure panels. The option Align will allow it to be pasted in the middle of the text, which will cause formatting problems for a brochure.
Step 5. Print or share the file
When you are ready to print it, click File → To print. From the file menu, you can also download the document in a different format or email it to a print shop or your co-workers.