As a previous print shop(stationary, brochures, etc.) employee, I have worked closely with bindery shops and mailing services, and one think we all say about any type of printed piece is try to make it standout from everyone else's work.
When designing a brochure, there are three basic elements to look at: the layout and style, the contents, and how they are distributed.
1.) the layout, their are endless possibilities as to how a brochure can be folded and presented. Its all a matter of how much money you want to spend. Your most popular and economical are basic folds(one fold, folded in half) and a tri-folds(2 folds, folded in thirds).
2.) the contents are all very similar for the industry, either you fill it up tell the customer all about the company and how good you are compared to the others, or its setup like a "sale" flyer containing low pricing and product information, or it a little of both company info and current product info. How many colors are involved in making the brochure? one color(usually black) or full-color(so it could include photos) Full color printing has become very affordable these days and when you look at the junk mail that you receive, i would bet more that 80% of it is in full color.
3.) how will it be distributed? Are you mailing it, is it designed as a handout, or is it an insert into a news letter or something, etc.? If you are planning to use is as a handout(ie. going door to door in your town soliciting business) or as an insert for a news letter, and you have enough information to fill up all panel of the brochure, then fill it up and let the people know everything possible about you. If not, then set the back panel up for mailing, put your return address in the upper left and a little box for a stamp. Now your brochure has a dual purpose: a handout and mailing.
One technique I like to use is "down and dirt", "plain jane", printing. I choose a basic fold, on heavy weight, colored paper(cream, orange, yellow, etc.) with black ink. Although it may sound boring, when the customer receives it, and puts it on their desk at the end of the day, which is full of full color pieces on white stock, its the first thing they see. I set up a mailing panel on the back so it has a dual purpose and I use one panel for info about my company(just a quick blurb) and the others for product information. And since its cheap to print, I can afford to print more. So im not concerned with how many i give out or how many i have left, everyone gets one.
The biggest key, like i said, is just making it stand out. If the customer has a huge pile of papers on their desk, like many of us have im sure, is yours going to be the first thing they see and save?
Hope this was helpful!