Friday March 23, 2012

Lindsay Sarin, Andrea Snyder & Julie Strange

Presentation Slides and Resources at

Marketing isn’t scary.


Marketing is like building a house – build it from the ground up. Good foundation, renovate when needed.

Good Foundation

Step 1 - Assessment – start with your staff – must be willing to have an honest conversation though, and be willing to listen; look at your numbers – who’s coming, what’s being asked, what resources are they looking for that you don’t have; ask the user! Gather feedback – doesn’t have to be formal, just ask them.

Sometimes the truth will hurt – must be willing to be honest and actually look at what the problems are.

Figure out what you need to assess.

Step 2 – Create a Blueprint - clear goals – visualize where you want to end up.

Step 3 – Clear the Decks – choose what is essential and eliminate everything else. It will be hard, but needs to be done. Examine things you like from others and replicate it.

Step 4 - Create Your Message – what do you want to convey? Keep the message simple. Think about where it will be – can you read it on your website? Colors are important. Collect ideas – from outside the library world, too. Cut 60% of the words from what you start with.

Step 5 - Reduce Pain – keep current customers happy while you’re making changes. Ask them what’s bothering them. Use your library like a customer – look for the little things you can change that will make a big change in someone’s day.


Step 6 - Be Brave –new programs to reach new audiences and promote the library. Stuffed animal sleep over. Order groceries at your library. Look for a need in your community and address it. Go to where your users are – leave the library!

Step 7 - Give people something to do – tell them why what you offer is applicable to them. Get their input as you’re building new programs/services. Active message.

Step 8 - Steal Ideas – steal ideas from other libraries and outside libraries. DON’T REINVENT THE WHEEL! (Personal note: one of my fave mottos!) Immerse yourself in outside events, how can you bring that into your library?

Step 9 - Get into the Community – go to local events. Represent the library. Constantly suggest the library to help people. Elevator speeches– you will need different speeches for different programs and audiences. Keep your librarian brain on at all times.

BONUS TIP: if this then that -


Step 10 - Asses the Results – will depend on what you were trying to accomplish. Debrief after everything. Talk to your patrons and staff. What went well? what didn’t? what should we never do again? Learn from it.

Step 11 - Build a Toolkit. Capture all ideas. Successes and failures. Templates.

Share your ideas at:
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Friday March 23, 2012

DianaFriend, Director, Communications & Marketing, Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library
They hired CIVICTechnologies to create Community Connect – Mark Futterman.
Cross GIS information with patron information.
Find out what your market segments are to focus services.
GIS=Graphical Information Systems Data
Perception vs. Reality – get the data, don’t just assume you know what your community situation is. TSCPL learned they were very wrong about many of their perceptions of their patrons and community.
Used market segmentation to create topic neighborhoods – group books by what users really want – example: phrase books in the travel neighborhood (section).
(Personal Note: For TSCPL librarians who couldn’t attend CiL, they did a video of their part of the presentation. Nice touch! Would Skype also work?)
Community Connect identified the services, collections and programs that match the different geographic areas’ interests, using the Market Segmentation data.
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It's that time again! Time to actually use this blog for something - sharing my conference notes! It seems like the only time I post anything here is after I've attended some conference sessions, or presented at a conference, and get the urge to share what I've learned. And, I'm OK with that.

Oh, sometimes I'll throw something else in for fun, like a Nebraska Learns 2.0 lesson. But not as often as I'd like to.

But, I still do love my blog site for it's perfect ability to gather into one place all of the other places I wander online. They're over there to the right -->

So first off, here is the presentation I did last month at Computers in Libraries 2012 with Louise Alcorn from the West Des Moines (IA) Public Library. We were very pleased to have a good crowd who stayed to the very end of our session, even though the exhibitor's reception (with free food and booze!) was coming up right after us.

Related links are on my Delicious. Louise and I plan on adding more links as we find relevant articles, blog posts, etc.

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