On a + note

Leveraging our readers’ interests. #35: 2010

Posted in on a + note by kendal0 on October 11, 2010

So, what does all of this talk about our customers’ reading habits have to do with libraries? What does this mean for us?

  • These are the books we should be buying and promoting. While we can’t afford all of them, we need to make the ones that are relevant to our communities available.
  • Library websites need:
  • Links the book award programs and literary events that are relevant to the community. How about a display of Newberry Award winners?
  • More online reviews and recommendations. For example:
  • Children’s librarians can write a blog about great kids books and good parenting resources and websites.
  • Young Adult librarians can initiate a book/movie/music review blog.
  • Launch a page with genealogy resources reviews and tips from your library’s experts. You can imagine how popular that would be!
  • Start a Cookbook Club with reviews of the latest and greatest cookbooks and websites. I’d volunteer to do that one!
  • Gather and share book reviews from local authors and community celebrities. What are the mayor, Dr. X, and the Board Chairman reading?
  • Stay current by providing reviews on the latest releases in books and music and the most helpful and entertaining websites.

Libraries need to position themselves as a reliable source of great reading material, and the best way to do this is through personal recommendations. We need to reach out to new communities of readers and feed their reading habit like Des Moines Public Library does at http://dmpl.org/blogs_wikis/index.html Do you start your staff and board meetings with a one-minute book review? Do you promote your latest read at every turn? We should. It is our personal recommendations that will make a difference!

Kitty Pope
kpope @ alliancelibrarysytem.com #35 October /10

P.S. Right now, I am reading Strategic Marketing for Nonprofit Organizations by Andreasen and Kotler. It’s dry, but really interesting at the same time!

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