Public Libraries Get a Boost with Targeted Marketing and Data Analysis

By Kristina Massari

New Analytics On Demand Apps Improve Outreach and Provide Insights to Multi-Branch Systems

Public libraries face challenges demonstrating their value to the communities and stakeholders they serve – just 22% of Americans say they know most or all of the services provided by their public library. To help libraries overcome these barriers, Gale, part of Cengage Learning, has added three new applications to Analytics On Demand, the first affordable big data analytics solution for public libraries. The new apps, Marketing Action (for Patrons and Non-Patrons) and Branch Insights, help libraries deploy targeted direct marketing programs to current and prospective library users, as well as better understand how existing patrons are interacting with individual branches across a system.

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Library Directors Need Information, Too!  Support Your Library’s Growth

Carla is beloved by patrons at her library. As the new library director, she leads monthly meetings for key community members, networks with local business leaders, and responds personally to patron concerns – promptly. And even though she only has a few reference desk rotations a month, people ask for her, because they know she will provide great servigvrlladyce…and know where to find what they need. But Carla is concerned about keeping her knowledge and skills fresh – whether it’s about new collection development strategies or upcoming IT advancements that will affect how the library leverages its MARC records. She recently hit the 15-year anniversary of library school graduation, and she’d like to be sure she has all the knowledge she needs to keep her library as a vital community resource…and continue her career advancement.

Library directors who want to avoid the “cobblers’ children” syndrome (failing to support their own learning and development because they’re focused on supporting others’) can do so easily, with resources we’ve pulled together to meet you and your colleagues’ needs.

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Marketing the Virtual Library with the Wizard

By Nick Schultz

I’m lucky. Through my role with Gale Customer Care, I have the privilege of providing consultative services to the People’s University – many call this their local library – and the unsung heroes they employ on their journey to the betterment of society. After engaging with public librarians for the better part of two years, I think the following quote highlights the contrast between a librarian’s ideal library patron, Virginia Woolf, to the current reality.

“I ransack public libraries, and find them full of sunk treasure.”  -Virginia Woolf

As much of a modernist as Woolf was – I’m sure she’d be shocked to discover the virtual stream of information that exists in today’s world. The truth is most library patrons don’t allocate hours of time to “ransack” a library’s website troving for an online resource treasure chest.  In fact, according to a recent study done by Pew 91% of Americans think public libraries are important to their communities, yet 80% of Americans say they don’t know what their library has to offer.  Herein lies the challenge. How do libraries market their evolving services to their communities?

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New Marketing Action Analytics On Demand Apps for Patrons and Non-Patrons

Analytics On Demand Marketing Action

Create meaningful outreach programs to targeted segments of your community

Discover the insights you need to make (and measure!) an impact with Analytics On Demand, a new data solution that helps libraries quickly and easily learn more about their users and communities.

Take marketing action! Watch a short video to learn how the apps can help your library.

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New Access Point and Enhancements for Analytics On Demand

Analytics On Demand Public Library

Analytics On Demand is moving off the Alteryx server and will undergo some look and feel enhancements. The new site will be available today, December 3, 2014. With this change, we’re also adding free bonus apps and a collaboration site for users.

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Calling All Patrons–Perfecting Community Outreach

By Laura Damon-Moore

Effectively reaching out to your community can be tricky. On October 31, Laura Damon-Moore, Co-Founder of Libraries as Incubators Project, shared her expertise on community outreach for the weekly Gale Geek. Laura was unable to do the usual live Q&A because her webinar was prerecorded; however, she still answered listeners’ questions… see below!

I was bummed not to be able to be there “in person” for our conversation last Friday, but I’m pleased to be able to continue to share some insight on community outreach with Cengage-Gale’s readers today.

I’m going to expand on some questions that I received after the conversation on Friday, in hopes that others will find my responses useful.

How do you use the community based mentors or volunteers IN your library to support programming?

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Data-Driven Marketing: Know Your Community

Analytics tool for Public Libraries

By Gerry Sawchuk

It’s impossible to attend a conference or read a library magazine today without hearing about data-driven decision making, big data, and measuring outcomes. Amidst the increasing “noise” around any trending topic, it can be hard to determine what it means for you and what tools are available to help gather and analyze data—here are some details to help you get started.

Do Analytics Really Matter?

“Big data” and “analytics” are buzzwords for good reason. Businesses in other industries have relied heavily on consumer demographics and data analysis for years. Research shows that businesses that leverage data analytics have stronger financial performance, are able to make better decisions more quickly, and are more likely to execute those decisions as intended.

Why does this matter to you? Libraries are not businesses, right? Many libraries are understandably sensitive to being compared to for-profit businesses. Consider for a moment though, that as a library, your products are the content and services you provide, and that your customers are your patrons. Profit aside, libraries have much to gain by leveraging data to retain and grow customers. Quite simply, there is an opportunity to be better positioned to meet the needs of your patrons.

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Is Your Library Essential Enough?

are public libraries still essential?

By Brian Risse

This article, “Being Essential Is Not Enough,” is a compelling commentary on the environment in which today’s libraries must function. Though written from an Academic Library perspective, when you read it with public libraries in mind, it still rings 100% true. And as the author, Rick Anderson states, “it’s a hard truth.”

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