WLA 2007: Taking the "Non" Out of Non-User

Posted by Lisa Strand on Thursday, October 18, 2007 in WLA Blog Archive
Jill StoverPresented by Jill S. Stover, Undergraduate Services Coordinator, Virginia Commonwealth University. Check out her blog at http://librarymarketing.blogspot.com/.

The first step is to decide what it is you want people to do. Examine and/or develop your:
  • mission and value statement and objectives
  • strategic plan
  • goals
  • behaviors (what you want to see)
Use SWOT analysis (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats).

See Hennepin County Library's Framework for the Future [pdf].

See Ansoff Growth Matrix. (She emphasized using this matrix, so be sure to take a look!)

After deciding what behaviors you want to see, decide who you want to reach. Look for holes in services provided in your community and target that market to fill the need.

Once you've decided who to target, watch people who are already doing the thing you want to promote. Talk to them to find out what their unmet needs are, so you can meet them and attract non-users. Have your users be ambassadors to your non-users to help bring them in.

AIDA (attention, interest, desire, action) tips:
  • Attention: be passionate, be different (find your niche), be relevant (people really want to be inspired, so try to be inspiring)
  • Interest: benefits matter (stuff doesn't), people matter (keep up with changes/trends in values), connections matter (networking)
  • Desire & Action: give out gold stars, think two steps ahead, make risk your friend, keep the door open, ask 2 questions: how did you find out about us? and would you recommend us to a friend? (can help you develop future strategies, helps you know what's working and what isn't)
Question from audience: I have no budget for marketing, what should I do?
Stover's answer: It's more about people and connections than needing money to do things. (This is the main thing I'll take away from this session! Focus on making connections.) Seek out other agencies or institutions to create partnerships and fill needs.

Question from audience: What's your one big idea for libraries?
Stover's answer: Finding ways to fill the current needs of people who want to create original content for the web. Can we become the place they come to create and post? Can we provide the equipment, software, and trainers?

Audience members mentioned doing things like writing a weekly or monthly column for their local newspaper to become known as a local expert. Another idea was sending out library info in their community's utility or cable bills (at no cost). Target groups by going to the agencies that support them.

Stover's PowerPoint slides are available online, and the final slide has a list of resources to explore. Be sure to take a look at what's listed there and add her blog (link above) to your RSS reader - she's an excellent resource on marketing in libraries!
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