Letterhead Design Tips: How to Design a Letterhead Without Professional Design Expertise

Letterheads are a common component of running a business, but their purpose goes far beyond basic communication. In fact, this simple device provides clients valuable insight into your company and what it has to offer. As a result, it’s important that you create a design that matches your business’ objectives. Find out how to design an epic letterhead, below.

What You Need to Know About Letterhead

If you’re new to the business world, you may not even know exactly what a letterhead is or its purpose. Here’s a quick review of the basics:

What is Letterhead?

Simply put, a letterhead is a printed heading company’s use to brand any and all blank documents. Many companies create custom letterheads that display their logo, business name, and contact information on the top of a piece of paper. Using your own letterhead ensures that any business-related documents, from interoffice memos to printed press releases, include all the key information about the company. 

When Is It Used?

Letterheads are utilized by businesses for a variety of different reasons. Commonly, it’s used to send a greeting or response to a customer or other business. The stationery is also beneficial for attracting new clients. Basically, a company should utilize an official letterhead any time mail correspondence needs to be longer than a paragraph.

Who Needs It?

Every business needs its own letterhead. While the digital world makes communication easier, official business is better left to traditional formats. Plus, some types of messages, like legal ones, require the authority that only a personalized letter can provide.

How to Design an Eye-Catching Letterhead

Why Your Letterhead Design Is Important

Before you learn how to design a letterhead, you need to understand its value. Like with business cards, personalized stationery helps legitimize your company in the minds of customers and business partners. A quality design also expresses key qualities of a successful business, including:

  • Professionalism
  • Personality
  • Creativity

Even before they’ve learned what you have to offer, you’ve reassured the reader that your company goes above and beyond.

How to Design an Eye-Catching Letterhead

3 Tips for Creating an Impressive Letterhead

There are a few key elements of letterhead design that separate basic, boring variations from top-quality ones. If you’d like to achieve the latter, follow these three design tips:

1. Make It Functional and Aesthetically Sharp

While a letterhead isn’t typically as detailed as a leaflet or flyer, it still needs to pack a punch. Achieving this feat requires that the design provides both functional and aesthetic attributes. For the former, include these elements:

  • Company Logo
  • Business Name
  • Address
  • Phone Number
  • Email

You may also want to include social media handles for easy communication. However, the inclusion of this feature depends largely on your audience. An older demographic is unlikely to prioritize social media platforms over phone communication, while younger customers prefer online correspondence. To avoid wasting space, it’s important that you choose the details that are most valuable to your customers.

As for aesthetics, you want to design a letterhead that’s appealing. Utilizing colour is an excellent way to make an impact, but the presence of multiple colours and tones can quickly transform a beautiful letterhead into a messy one. As a result, choose your company’s main colour and only use secondary shades sparingly. You may also want to add interesting graphics and details for optimal impact.

2. Make It Legible and Clean

While there’s a lot of thought that goes into designing a letterhead, the outcome should be simple and easy to read. Don’t be afraid to add clean, crisp lines and special design touches that make your layout unique. However, leave plenty of white space on the page to avoid overtaking the main body of text.

3. Make It Distinctive

When a customer opens your letter, you want them to be instantly wowed. Adding a side column or bottom border are simple steps, but they help break up the information in a creative way. This approach will ensure that your information stands out while still maintaining its readability.

How to Design a Beautiful Letterhead

Now that you know what’s involved with a quality design, it’s time to learn about the process. Here’s how to design a beautiful letterhead in five easy steps.

How to Design an Eye-Catching Letterhead

1. Start With a User-Friendly Platform

If you’re not a graphic designer, creating a company letterhead may feel like a scary undertaking. But luckily, there are many computer programs (indesign, photoshop, Microsoft Word, etc) that have letterhead maker options you can use! These programs make it easy to create a unique and beautiful letterhead that’s suited to your business. 

Programs like indesign use drag-and-drop functionality to help you create the ideal letterhead design. Create text boxes for your essential information (such as your company name and address), upload your logo, and simply drag them into place! 

If you’re a genuine novice, simply open a Microsoft Word document and use one of the many ready-made Word templates to create your letterhead. Just choose a template you like, upload it to your new document, and fill in the blanks! Opting for a user-friendly platform will make designing your letterhead a simple — and even fun — activity.

2. Choose the Right Design Template

While it’s tempting to start a design from scratch, it’s better to opt for a letterhead template. A pre-set format already contains the correct spacing, so you won’t have to battle with the layout. It can also provide you with creative details that you wouldn’t necessarily think of on your own.

Choose a letterhead template based on the vibe you’re going for and not the finished look. You’ll have the opportunity to customize it to match your needs, so don’t focus on the basic elements, like colour. Instead, opt for a design that mimics your desired essence and layout.

Once you find the ideal design, customize it by uploading a crisp, high-quality logo. It’s very important to use the right file type, as a high-resolution image will look much better on a printed page. Upload your logo as a PNG file (rather than your standard JPG), and make sure to save the finished letterhead as a PDF file. This will keep your page setup from changing from one operating system to another (for example, a Mac vs a PC).

3. Incorporate Branding

A company letterhead is more than an opportunity to customize your documents and share your address with customers; it’s also a chance to show off your company brand. Your letterhead should reflect your company brand, so that anyone who sees it knows exactly the kind of business they’re working with.

You probably spent a lot of time creating the perfect company logo. You sought out the best logo fonts for your brand, the right colours and images, and the ideal layout and design. You should approach your custom letterhead (and all other marketing materials, for that matter) with the same diligence! Make sure that your letterhead is consistent with your company branding by using matching fonts, colours, and logo images.

4. Highlight Valuable Information

Next, rank the information you want to include on the letterhead based on its value to the customer. For some companies, contact information is a priority. In this case, phone, email, and social media handles should take precedence with a large font, and you may want to bold it. If branding is your key focus, place the logo, company name, and tagline front and centre. By making the most valuable information larger, it helps it stand out on the page.

5. Include Creative Touches

After the basics are covered, it’s time to add a creative flair. This is the point in the process where additional graphics and design elements, like borders, are added to the layout. However, test them one at a time to determine what looks best. The goal is to stand out without overwhelming the eye, so avoid packing in too many features.

Bring Your Letterhead to Life Today

A well-designed letterhead helps a company stand out from their competitors in all the right ways. Ensure your design meets your high standards without breaking the bank by turning to Banana Print for all of your printing needs. Our user-friendly platform allows you to design a beautiful letterhead with a few simple clicks of a button, and our 24-hour turnaround means your product is in your hands quickly and efficiently.

Not sure which design is right for your company? Order our sample pack to try out different styles in person!

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