Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Coming up on LM

As this year comes to and end and next year is right around the corner, it's a perfect time to reflect on the past year and look ahead to the next. I have a lot of New Year's resolutions for this blog, so I'd like to give you an idea of what I'm thinking about for the Library Marketing in '07.

I imagine that almost every blogger out there has a pile of notes on posts they'd like to write about but don't seem to get around to (at least, it makes me feel better about my own post backup to think so!). I have heap of topics I'm eager to dive into early next year. Here are the big ones:

1. A series of posts on the emerging trend of mobile marketing and why librarians should jump into this arena now. As part of a research project for a marketing class, I did a good deal of research into this topic and believe that cell phones and other mobile devices make good venues for library services. I'll share some of my findings with you.
2. A series of posts on forming and leading a library advisory committee. I don't know how many academic libraries out there have advisory committees, but if the literature is any indication, there aren't very many. I'd like to share my thoughts on how I put this group together, for what reason, and how I think they fit into marketing efforts.
3. A discussion of what I find to be a central tension in marketing that is especially noticeable in library marketing: Finding a balance between giving people what they want and offering what they need. Sometimes the two are the same, but other times they're at odds. When is it best to assert our expertise and when is it best to let the patrons do the leading?
4. A consideration of what are some reasonable expectations/outcomes for marketing plans. Is marketing always about getting patrons in the door? Or are there other ways to evaluate marketing effectiveness?

In addition to catching up on my posts, I'd also like to upgrade the LM blog itself. I've talked for a while now about doing a re-design, but decided to hold off until Google sorted out its new version of Blogger. Now that the new version is out of beta, I'm going to be making the switch. In the process, I'm hoping to also change the look and feel, and make it a little more Web 2.0-friendly so that it more closely reflects what I think a blog should be. I hope you'll enjoy the upgrades. :-)

Finally, a goal I've had for LM from the beginning is that I'd like to involve readers and showcase their own marketing efforts, thoughts, ideas, questions, and so on. Most marketing, with the exception of some major promotional initiatives, happens behind closed doors so it's hard to get a sense of what librarians are doing. In a number of cases, I've e-mailed colleagues asking for more information about their marketing efforts, but usually don't receive a reply. I understand that for some, participating in a blog can be off-putting or too time-consuming, which I understand and respect. But for those of you who do want to share your marketing projects or perspectives, please do keep LM in mind as a place to highlight them. I'm pretty open to sharing the floor and responding to questions or comments, so long as they fit with the blog and are useful to readers. Don't hesitate to e-mail or IM me at JillatCabell with your thoughts and ideas. I don't have all the answers, but I always learn a lot from others' points of views and experiences. For those of you who have already taken the time to share your thoughts - thank you! I've enjoyed meeting many outstanding librarians and marketers with a passion for building better relationships with patrons/customers and I hope you'll continue to keep in touch.

There's a lot to look forward to in '07 and I thank each and every one of you for reading and for your support of this blog project. I could never have kept this up if it wasn't for your feedback and kind words. It's meant a lot to me!

I'll be leaving on Friday and returning after the first of the year, so you may notice a pause in posting during that time. Have a terrific holiday and best wishes to you and your families for a happy new year!

Categories: random_stuff

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