Thursday, January 27, 2005

Talk about great segmentation!

I have always been impressed with the Public Library of Charlotte-Mecklenberg County (PLCMC) for their innovative outreach and marketing strategies. Take a look at their web site for teens. They've done a terrific job of identifying a segment of their patron base and creating a site that "speaks" to this audience. (In the Find a Job section, the subtitle reads, "Even Donald Trump had to start somewhere..."). They created each section with a specific teen need in mind (finding a job, doing homework, connecting with friends) and listed appropriate resources to meet those needs.

Creating services that satisfy real needs is the other part of the marketing equation. At the PLCMC, they are creating a teen advisory council, they have a teen book discussion board, and they offer SAT prep courses, to name a few. One of my favorite services is their Brarydog homework help. Brarydog is a sort of customizable library portal designed to help students complete their assignments. I particularly like that in the description the authors compare library resources to a shopping mall (shopping malls have general stores and specialty stores, like a library has general resources as well as specialized).

Backing up great marketing with even greater service is something to strive for! Also, thinking about the way in which we present ourselves to different segments of our patron base is crucial. Way to go PLCMC!

1 comment:

Dan Ream said...

I agree- Charlotte-Mecklenberg's BizLink at
is my favorite public library business site. it has local links as well as widely known ones for almost every business topic.

And yes, I am biased by having won a Brarydog t-shirt from them in an online contest even though I live many hours away from Charlotte.