How To Write a Great Annual Report

Whatever the nature of your business or organisation - commercial, not-for-profit or charity - an annual report allows you to show what you’ve achieved over the past twelve months.  It helps you demonstrate your accomplishments to all of your key audiences, build new partnerships and acknowledge great work done across all areas of the business. 

However, preparing an engaging and effective annual report can be a daunting task. Here are some tips on how to make sure your annual report is worthy of the efforts that go into producing it:


Knowing who will be reading your annual report is key and can change completely the tone and voice of the copy. As creative copywriters, at mela we are used to writing all sorts of pieces of works from snappy blogs to informative event reports and we always work with our clients to write the best copy possible to capture the interest of their target audiences.


Make sure you have solid information to share. Readers of annual reports want to learn and are usually looking for numbers, statistics and facts. By working closely with the clients we help them to be transparent with their audience by publishing true facts and figures, plain for all to see and presented in an attractive and comprehensible way. 


Start well and the rest will follow. The opening paragraphs are the first bit of copy anyone picking up or scrolling through the report will read, so a cracking introduction can make all the difference between a flick-through and a beginning to end thorough read. 


It’s important to have a great design team on your side, one that you get along with as you will need to go back and forth quite often. Remember, the design should reflect the tone and content of the copy so keep the design team up-to-date as copy is cleared. Also, make sure your designers stick to the brief given and that any changes to the look and feel of the report are discussed with the client beforehand in order to avoid any issues later.


Whether your annual report is published as an online PDF,  a glossy print magazine or a website, great images showing your work are vital. Pictures do speak a thousand words and more people will look at the pictures than read the words. Therefore ensure you have lots of high-quality images available and also be prepared to commission new graphics or images to make the report look and feel both appealing and professional.


It’s beneficial to have a theme to an annual report, that can avoid making it a dry piece of long copy. Themes can bind together different sections, can create creative headlines and give flow to a document. Take a look at one of the Football Association of Wales’ annual reports we wrote, with the support of the Departures design team, to see how the ‘family’ theme is carried throughout.

Looking for a team of creative copywriters to help you prepare your next annual report? 

Whatever your needs and whoever your audience is, contact us at mela to find out how we can help you put together a report that will look great both in print and online.

FAW Annual Report

Author : mela

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