New Marketing Trends

Marketing Ideas for Non-Profits and Libraries

The M Word helps librarians learn about marketing trends and ideas.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Libraries essential to life?

How many of you have seen this ad campaign by the American Chemistry Council? I had seen it a couple of times here and there and I finally ended up following the link because I was curious to see why anyone would need to create a public awareness campaign for chemistry.

Okay, after I got to the site I realized there are a million reasons why they would need the campaign. And of course, the connection to libraries is that we have a million reasons why we need to conduct public awareness campaigns as well.

What struck me was that they answered the question: "What makes Chemistry Essential?" over and over again. That’s good thing and a good question to ask ourselves when we are conducting our campaigns.

While you are at their website stop by at their media room – it’s a good setup and has the essential elements that make for an effective media room. I love that they include speeches but I especially love that they post their past press conferences. Anyone who has ever herded staff members to fill the seats of a press conference can appreciate how valuable it would be to post the video to the web in order to really get the message out to the public!

Everyone who knows me has heard me beg and plead for libraries to create at least a press release section on their web but as time goes on, I think it is critical to create an entire media room. We are all in the same boat, great ideas and no staff to implement, but build a section at a time and eventually you’ll have an exciting and information media room.

I also love that are using the phrase “Learning Center” for resources. Our field has been struggling so long over the terminology for our databases. Here at NJSL we started using "online resources" but really, why not call it what it is? I like learning center. Has anyone else come up with other terms that are working for you?

The other title I like is, “Get Involved” it calls you to action just to make to make you click and sets the tone for active participation. The page can have volunteer opportunities but also links to advocacy issues and maybe information geared gain support for your policies.

A librarian shared a story with me the other day that when her library issued a news release about their new self checkout machines, the paper wanted to write a story questioning how the library could afford something like that when they were saying they needed money. Public education is always a good place to begin and it is always a good policy to get support for a rainy day debate.

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