Library 2.0 Masterclass with Helene Blowers – Day 2

Day 1 was great, but Day 2 was just as good.

Social media & Library Marketing

The strength of our libraries is our unique brand – which is the specific communities we each serve.  Mass marketing is no longer the key, it is now niche marketing. Even our top Australian TV shows only reach about 5% of the population.

The public visiting public libraries is a choice, not a requirement – really think about what that means.

Marketing is a requirement for libraries, but can be done in new and amazingly engaging ways through Web 2.0.  Examples included a Day in the life of Allen County – Allen County Public Library, Paint the town Read – PLCMC, Love New Jersey Libraries, Storypalooza – Gail Borden Public Library and many more.  We shouldn’t be worried about the sustainability of such programs, after all the technology is changing so fast. We should be more concerned about community needs – use short bursts to get our communities aware of their library.

Create an engagement calendar. Use regular events and holidays to create activities, using free online tools, such as image generators.

8 Steps to Marketing 2.0:

  1. Educate – learn about social media
  2. Experience – participate and join in the conversation
  3. Envision – develop a 2.0 marketing plan
  4. Engage – create social celebrations
  5. Enable – help your library brand & content travel
  6. Expand – play with multimedia
  7. Explore – learn as you go & track success
  8. Experiment, experiment, experiment

And to top it all off: “The best way to get your customers to market your brand is to allow them to promote (the library) by marketing themselves!”

2.0 Innovations: Passions to Practices

We need to be looking for reasons to change, not excuses for not changing.

Efficiency evolution – improving on what already exists – libraries are good at this. Evolutionary evolution – creating something new and distinctly better. Revolutionary evolution – radically changes business and culture.  Libraries are great at the first and have a long way to go before they are anywhere near implementing the others.

Four elements of innovation: creativity, strategy, implementation and profitability.  Innovation in libraries usually fails at the strategy – lack of buy-in being one of the unbreachable barriers reached there.

Innovative ideas come from focussing on quantity – not quality, collecting everything, getting out of the comfort zone and adding constraints to your thinking.

However, it can be not so much the ideas you need to focus on, but how to move those ideas through the organisation.

  • Sell it – tie it to your mission and vision statements
  • Create alliances – build relationships that will give you support
  • Don’t ask for permission – either ask for forgiveness where the risk is all yours, or ask for support and share the risk
  • Sell your vision personally – if you have to produce a report, follow it up personally – you can’t sell a vision on a piece of paper
  • Find a champion – if not a supervisor, find a mentor – even if they are outside your line of authority

Implementation requires time, resources and scope. If there is a problem here, you need to revisit the strategy. The profitability comes with how the idea is enacted within your organisation.

Change is about leadership – shouldering it yourself. Change begins with me, leadership is taking the responsibility for moving things forward.

Well that’s it, apart from all the personal little notes I wrote myself about things to chase up for myself or for my library – and there are many of those!   All Helene’s slides are available from Slideshare and I recommend you check them out – they are well worth it.

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  1. […] has made her presentations available on Slideshare.  In the meantime, I hope to get my notes on Day 2 up soon, so stay […]

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