RAILS has a new tool for libraries to stay connected to the My Library Is... campaign. As part of the campaign, you can subscribe to receive a regular newsletter with links to blog posts, templates, and resources. Anyone who is interested in telling the story of the library and proving the library's value to stakeholders is encouraged to subscribe. This email arrives the first Monday of every month.
If you hear the term “marketing,” does your mind jump to Madison Avenue types like Don Draper? Or do you start thinking about what’s on your grocery list? Maybe something in between? Here in Libraryland, the species known as "Ipsum bibliothecarii" (marketing librarian) has only recently evolved. We still don’t know a lot about them, and just when we think we have them figured out, they surprise us.
Four members of the My Library Is… Advisory Team will share their library stories in this panel presentation. Representing school and public libraries, the panelists will discuss how their libraries have engaged their patrons, educated their stakeholders, and expanded the reach and value of the library to their communities. A short Q&A will follow.
When we have a message we want to share with the public, we turn to our list of what I like to think of as tools, and decide which will best help us get the word out. Depending on the message, we use a combination (or all!) of these tools: social media posts, print and electronic newsletter blurbs, flyers, bookmarks, press releases, blogs, etc. But what I think is the most important tool is probably the one that’s been around the longest… actual word of mouth.
In 2019 BC (Before COVID), our library hosted a self-directed program for couples called “Date Night at the Library.” It was quite popular, and the plan was to run this program again this year, but we all know what happens to “best laid plans . . .” Even though we may not be able to invite couples in to explore the library in person, the concept can still be adapted for distance usage. The ultimate purpose is to get people to explore your collection, resources, and services.
The Fox River Grove Public Library District has created two videos to promote the Library and the Fox River Grove community. The videos were funded by the My Library Is… Grant from the Reaching Across Illinois Libraries System (RAILS). The videos are available on the Library’s YouTube channel, social media, and website, as well as the RAILS My Library Is... website.
At the 2020 ILA Annual Conference, I had the privilege of co-presenting a program, Effective Library Marketing Campaigns, with two colleagues, Burgundy Hill from Quincy Public Library and Ann Reeves from Eureka Public Library District. Our presentation focused on how libraries can promote themselves through stronger coordination of communication channels, better brand building, and campaign planning tools that are easily available through the My Library Is... website. Here's a description: