How to distribute flyers and leaflets

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Person Holding Flyers

Leaflets and flyers are one of the best and most cost-effective types of advertising. But to get the most impact from them you need a solid leaflet distribution strategy. This will help you to establish…

  • How you distribute your leaflets
  • Where and when you’ll put them out
  • Who will help you get your message out there

Learn how to distribute leaflets with our step-by-step guide.

 

What ways can I distribute my leaflets and flyers?

Person Holding Leaflet

First off, you need to choose the right company to distribute your leaflets, if you’re not handling this internally.

Start by Googling ‘leaflet distribution’, along with the postcode(s) for where you intend to distribute your flyers or leaflets. Your search will typically throw up a few different providers offering  three main distribution services:

Door-to-door

The classic way to get a leaflet and flyer into the hands of your customers – via their letterboxes.

Some 60.5% of household occupants would read a leaflet posted through their door – Direct Marketing Association.

Things to consider with door to door leaflet distribution:

  • Location: Targeting specific streets and areas? Check the company will tailor their deliveries to your needs.
  • Cost: With slightly cheaper plans your leaflet or flyer will likely be delivered with other companies’ leaflets and flyers.
  • Local press: Also consider the option to distribute your leaflets or flyers inside any free local newspapers delivered to houses.

Face-to-face

Your leaflets and flyers are thrust right into the hands of potential customers. Here are things to consider when distributing leaflets face-to-face:

  • Timing and location: Consider distributing leaflets in town at the weekend or outside public transport hubs during rush hour.
  • Added benefit: Distribution staff at some companies give a little sales pitch or answer questions while handing out your leaflets.
  • Special occasions: Identify events likely to be popular with your target audience and distribute leaflets then – you may have to pay a fee to do this.

Business-to-business

Depending on the products and services you are advertising, delivering directly to other businesses may make more sense than distributing to residential households.

There are two main approaches to consider:

  • Members of staff: Targeting your leaflets at people who work in a particular industry or match a certain demographic.
  • People using services: Distributing leaflets to public places like libraries, doctor’s surgeries and sports centres.
  • Customers: Sharing your leaflets with businesses you expect your target audience to use – i.e. car garages, record shops or hair salons.

The power of the noticeboard
Your leaflets and flyers could end up on an office or waiting room wall. On average, leaflets and flyers are revisited by someone 3.6 times – according to the Direct Marketing Association.

 

How do I choose the right leaflet distribution company?

Once you’ve found your shortlist of likely flyer distribution candidates, look through their company websites. Do they seem professional, trustworthy and affordable? How long have they been in business?

Several things to look out for include:

  • Volume: Is there a minimum or maximum quantity of leaflets they will deliver for you?
  • Processes: Do they perform a spot check to make sure their delivery staff are doing their work properly?
  • Collection: Can they collect your leaflets and flyers, or will you have to send them over?
  • Reviews: See what clients say about them in their testimonials and reviews section of their website.
  • Social: Review their comments on social media – how well do they deal with customer service?

When any leaflet distribution company ticks all these boxes, ask them for a free, no-obligation quote; then compare the prices and services all of them are offering. Only then will you be able to choose the best one for your needs and budget.

Do I need permission to hand out leaflets?

When it comes to distributing leaflets and flyers, there are laws and rules to consider. Flyers and leaflets fall under the Government’s classification of free printed material.

  • Licence: You may need to apply for a licence. This might require you to wear a badge when distributing leaflets.
  • Fees: You may need to pay fees to distribute leaflets at an event – fees can be reduced for community events though.

Where can I distribute my leaflets?

Different councils across the UK have separate regulations around distributing printed materials. Use the postcode checker at GOV.UK to learn the laws around licencing and fees affecting your area.

When do I not need permission to hand out leaflets?

The only instances where you won’t require permission include:

  • Posting through letterboxes
  • Handing out inside a building
  • Distributing for a charity
  • Handing out political or religious material

Ignore the rules and face a fine

It’s worth remembering that you may incur a penalty of up to £80, or a fine of up to £2,500, if you hand out your flyers and leaflets without a valid licence. Make sure you check beforehand where you are distributing and the area’s rules.

Leaflet distribution companies and the law

Leaflet distribution companies should be adhering to all local Government regulations. But please do check with the company if you’re uncertain about anything.

 

How do I track the success of my flyers and leaflets

Once you’ve distributed your leaflets and flyers, make sure you keep track of the response rate from customers. This can be achieved in many ways, such as:

Special offers and discounts

Including a special offer, for a limited time only, or a discount coupon that features BOGOF or money-off promotions gives the reader an incentive to keep your flyer.

QR codes and unique URLs

Adding a special QR barcode on the flyer/leaflet that links to a page on your website allows you to track how many people have scanned your leaflet. You can also add a unique URL, which only those who have the leaflet can access – allowing you to track conversions – find out more about QR codes.

Phone calls, social interactions and web traffic

Check to see if there was an increase in the number of interactions with your company in the aftermath of your leaflet distribution. It could be a result of your promotion. This info will also help you fine-tune any future promotions.

Ready to get started? Now you’ve got the strategy, get your leaflets and flyers today.

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17 COMMENTS

  1. Great article.
    Leaflet, flyer and promotional material distribution is a highly effective and ROI generating media opportunity. It gets you into the hands of your target audience and works seamlessly with digital marketing. Highly targeted and rewarding.

  2. This is a great starting article on the some of the channels for delivering flyers and leaflets. It would be good to see it updated with further information on new Mapping software to ensure you are reaching as many of your potential customers as possible and the ‘Live Tracking’ of distributors which helps audit the service. There are also some laws surrounding where you can and cannot stand regarding the ‘face to face’ service, as you need to use a company that has paid a licence fee to stand outside certain transport links and in some Boroughs. It is also worth mentioning that once you have a shortlist of two or three companies to carry out your marketing – visit their office/warehouse addresses to satisfy yourself that they have the ability to provide these services as sadly we are living in a world where websites and even testimonials and google reviews are not always correct. Door Drop is still a strong marketing channel especially when used alongside other Social Media so what are you waiting for – get Printing and distributing…

  3. Leaflet distribution is definitely one of the most cost-effective forms of marketing for small and large businesses alike. This is why businesses of all sizes use them time and time again. As long as you have a good quality, well-designed leaflet they can be an extremely powerful tool to use as part of your marketing mix to promote your business.

    After all, everyone has a letterbox 😉

    • We’re really pleased you can see the value in leaflet distributing Will! We definitely think it’s an underrated form of marketing but, we are seeing a large resurgence since the changes to GDPR. You can’t beat a marketing strategy with a mix of materials and platforms.

  4. Thanks for sharing your view on ways to distribute Flyer and Leaflets. Leaflet distribution has altered the way of marketing for the new business. This is the finest way to introduce your business to the new customers.

  5. This is really great information about distributing flyers. I see flyers for businesses all the time, and it seems like a great way to market yourself and raise awareness. I didn’t realize that you could have your flyers delivered by themselves or with a stack of other businesses’ flyers. There are a lot of options, I will have to keep them in mind in case I ever need to distribute flyers in the future.

  6. Is it possible to advertise my website through leaflets to businesses who may be interested in buying ad banners on my website? knowing that the website is managed from outside UK but it is targeting travelers to London

    • Hi Walid, I’m not sure how you could set something like that up. First you might want to contact a leaflet distribution company and ask them about it. Perhaps if you order your leaflets from us online, they could collect them for you and distribute them in London.

    • Hi Emma, thank you for your comment – we can certainly design and print a leaflet for you, but we don’t offer distribution services. We offer free UK delivery services to send your order to your address, but once you’ve received it you’ll need to connect with a distribution service in Clapham. Cheers! -Danielle

  7. I need to look into having someone do our flyers more, as we’re too busy to do it ourselves now. We have had success with targetted flyering – in the shops/bars that our clientele frequent.

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