Admit it... at one time or another you have used Microsoft Word to create a brochure. You thought you needed a brochure and then you thought "I have Word, I can create a brochure using a template." Yes, Word does have templates for creating brochures, as well as many other types of documents. But if your final goal is to have the brochure printed by a professional printing company Word is not the best choice for creating your brochure and below you will see some reasons why.
1. The initial intention of Word was never to be a page layout program. It was meant to be a word processing program, meaning something you can use to create letters, proposals, etc. It was never meant to be used to create brochures, detailed fliers, etc, despite the fact that it now has templates to do all those things.
2. Word is finicky when it comes to graphics. Yes, you can insert all kinds of images into Word, however, it does not translate well in the world of offset printing which typically requires a high resolution CMYK image. When an image is placed into Word, many times it is automatically converted to an RGB image which is not good or usable for offset printing. It is fine for digital color printing but if it is something going on a printing press it will not work. (to read more about imagery read my blog post: Optimizing Your Life with Proper Image Use)
3. When considering colors, Word doesn't use the color matching system known as PMS (Pantone Matching System). PMS is the system that printing companies use to print your particular project. This is a standard in the design and printing industry and ensures that your project colors will match the colors you choose. Word uses only RGB and name colors such as "robin's egg blue" which will not work in the printing world.
4. If you supply a project created in Word to a printer, chances are you may pay more to have your project produced. This is due to the extra time that has to be spent to get your project to output correctly and in a way that is usable by the printer. You may also encounter a lower quality project because of the fact that it was created in Word.
5. Even though you can create columns in Word typically text does not flow well. This most noticable when your Word document that you have carefully layed out and created your columns of text is opened up into someone else's Word software... the text flow is totally out of whack! Images have jumped from the second to the third, your text runs off the page now, etc etc.
To avoid all of the above mentioned points, it is best to use software that is intended for this type of work such as Adobe InDesign. Using InDesign will guarantee the flow of your text as well as your images will be as they are intended by you when the project is printed. Plus, you will save yourself money by doing it the right way from the beginning.