By Tina Creguer
“In God we trust. All others must bring data.”
– W. Edwards Deming, famed statistician, professor, author
Every day, businesses across Canada use sophisticated data analytics to understand, predict, and gain insight into their customers’ behavior. But why should businesses have all the fun? Libraries have goals and missions to accomplish, and they, too need to understand their customers, er, patrons.
Gale now offers powerful new tools for Canadian libraries that will help them gain deep insight into patrons and improve the day-to-day decision-making and strategic planning. By tapping into your library’s existing data and combining it (in a secure environment) with demographic data using Environics’ PRIZM5 lifestyles profiles, Analytics On Demand helps you learn more about patrons, from income and life stages to online behaviors and preferred social media channels.
Analytics On Demand includes easy-to-use and spatial analytics that give you intelligence to inform your strategic planning. Practical uses for this data include: creating effective outreach campaigns to specific groups or households, refining collections, developing new programs, and measuring performance across all programs.
Three apps deliver powerful information
Libraries can employ these three modules with customized on-demand reporting in PDF, Excel, and other formats. Plus maps! All three apps map your patrons at the household level.
- Patron Profiles – See your community’s current library activity aligned with PRIZM5 demographics data such as location, household composition, length of residency, and more. Produce lifestyle analyses that show which types of patrons your library attracts easily and what types of user may require stronger outreach.
- Collection Intelligence – Combine checkout data with PRIZM5 community data to learn how your community is really using your resources. Understand what materials are being checked out and by whom, when, how often, and more. (Imagine how this can inform your collection development priorities.)
- eBook & Audiobook Insights – Blend your vendor reports with PRIZM5 demographic data to find out what genres your high-use patrons are borrowing most in your digital collections.
Resulting reports are easy to read and actionable with “visual analytics” that tell a story. Data is blended securely in a cloud computing network and accessible only to your library. And creating reports is simple so you don’t need to involve offsite agencies or IT professionals.
Interested? View a sample report to see the rich data resources now available to your library. See today how your library can become a data-driven machine!
About the Author
Tina has been a library fan-girl since childhood, when she visited weekly with her family. She can be found many mornings standing outside her hometown library at opening time, waiting to nab a study room.