Who’s your hero? #5: 2012
Libraries who embrace change in today’s volatile economy are emerging as heroes in the eyes of their communities and their customers! They are looking for innovative ways to access new customers and to better serve current customers.
How are they doing this?
- By utilizing relevant marketing. In a time of economic challenge, this is a tough reality for many to get their head around. However, to those libraries that have slashed marketing budgets in the last few years and are now wondering why usage is falling off, it’s because they stopped pushing the product. Libraries that are actively promoting themselves and pushing out their products on all channels are growing their market share. They are making a difference in the lives of their ever-expanding customer base. They are heroes, in my world!
- By getting their message out through a wider variety of channels. No longer are we a one channel society. My TV has at least 500 channels. Library heroes are using ever channel, from print to Twitter, to reach an ever-fragmenting market share. Consider this example. A vendor tweeted a free shipping offer to new customers. In less than 24 hours, he had1,652 new customers at a cost of under $50. If he had used a direct mail marketing campaign (at a cost of $6,235), it’s estimated he would have netted approximately 150 new customers. If he had used a billboard (costing $7,300), he would have likely attracted less than 300 new customers. The bookmark at the circulation desk just doesn’t reach far enough anymore; we need digital bookmarks, blogs, wikis, Facebook, and Twitter feeds, in addition to traditional print marketing, to build new markets and be relevant.
I knew you’d ask, so who are my current library heroes (for today)?
- New York Public Library. With more than 300,000 Twitter followers, @nypl reaches into new and unique communities to push the product.
- Edmonton Public Library. Their award-winning rebranding efforts have repositioned the library as a fundamental community resource.
- Topeka Shawnee County Library System. Have a look at their website and the social media outlets they use. Impressive!
- Hamilton Public Library features a fully mobile catalogue with apps to connect Apple and Android users. Great marketing!
- Naperville Public Library. Check out how NPL is using YouTube to reach a whole new group of potential customers. Director John Spears is a hero!
NYPL, EPL, TSCLS, HPL, and NPL are using great, new, and innovative marketing ideas to access new library customers and better serve existing ones. They are all library heroes in my world!
Kitty Pope #5 March 2012