Sunday is always my big marketing day, and it starts early:
4:30pm - 6pm: John Cotton Dana Library Public Relations Awards. This is the biggest gala for the most important PR award in the US. JCD was sponsored by HW Wilson for more than 50 years. Now that Wilson has been absorbed by EBSCO, thankfully, the contest continues. As a vendor event, the awards gala isn't listed in the program, but watch this blog and PR lists for news & invitations to the event. Since I always cover it, I've found out about the timeslot already, and I know it will be in a hotel outside the convention center.
And these three events are just the MUSTS that I attend annually. There are many regular sessions that cover PR, marketing, fundraising, and advocacy. You'll find them sprinkled throughout the program.
But wait, there's more!
Monday, 8am - 10am: Library Marketing Unprogram. Last year I attended this new event, and it's repeating this year. It's an "unprogram," where people sit together at tables to briefly discuss whatever questions they pose. You can help choose multiple discussion topics, then sit at the tables that are discussing your favorites. Each table / group then shares its main points. So if you want to talk about certain marketing topics with a handful of like-minded folks, this is the place for you! It's also a great way to meet a number of people in a short time.
And finally, something totally new that I'm eager to check out this year:
12 - 4:30pm Saturday AND 12 - 3:30pm Sunday: Advocacy Corner. This is a 2-day series of 30-minute talks on various advocacy-related topics. National and local library leaders will discuss legislative tips, statistics, fundraising, building community, communication, and more. You'll want to check the full schedule here. With 8 hours of short, drop-by programs, you can surely make time to catch at least one that interests you. I can recommend some of the speakers that I've heard at other conferences:
* Stephanie Vance on DC Insider Strategies
* Peter Pearson on Grassroots Advocacy for funding
* Stephanie Gerding on Turning the Page 2.0
* Dr. Ken Haycock on Power of Persuasion
Aside from all of this, I have a handful of other "regular sessions" that I aim to cover and to attend for my own information. I find ALA a wonderful conference for discovering what others are doing, for making great face-to-face connections, for learning a lot about current practices in librarianship, for absorbing new marketing info, and for getting reinvigorated about my work. In between, I try to find a little time for eating, sleeping, and occasional sightseeing.
Nancy will be there too, attending some of the same events and talking about Library Aware in EBSCO Booth #1428. We hope lots of our readers will be at ALA 12 in Anaheim, Calif. and we invite you all to come find us and say Hello!