One book I have been really impressed with lately is 101 Social Media Tactics for Nonprofits: A Field Guide by Melanie Mathos and Chad Norman. The authors make the assumption that you have already devised your social media strategy, and point out that their book isn’t intended to be one about strategy. Having said that they do offer a very simple four-step approach based on the POST method:
1. People – where are your constituents engaging and how can you best reach them?
2. Objectives – What do you want to accomplish?
3. Strategy – What do you want things to look like when you’re done?
4. Technology – How are you going to get there?
The book is organised around 5 sections – Setup, Communicate, Engage, Fundraise and Measure. Within these sections there are a number of individual tactics. For instance under Communicate, tactic 34 is Add events to your Facebook page while under Measure, tactic 99 is Create a Social Media Listening Dashboard. Then for each tactic there is extremely practical advice around What You Need, How to Do It and A Closer Look (which gives more specific detailed advice about tactics). Practical real-life examples from non-profits are also included. There is also an accompanying website detailing new case studies and tactics.
All in all, this is one of the most practical and user-friendly books on social media I have come across!
Ned Potter has a fabulous new marketing blog – The Library Marketing Toolkit. It is designed to be a website to support Ned’s upcoming book of the same name, as well as being a standalone resource for all things to do with library marketing. You can check out more about the blog here – and there is a link on that page to download a free chapter of Ned’s upcoming book 🙂
Ned’s book includes a small case study from yours truly – my involvement was very much a tribute to the power of networking on Twitter! Basically Ned called for volunteers to write case studies for the book, and eventually contacted me about writing one on email marketing. I’m absolutely thrilled he has included a link to this blog on his new website!
Building a buzz: libraries & word-of-mouth marketing by Peggy Barber and Linda Wallace is a fabulous book. Starting off with a short description of what marketing is all about, they then emphasise the importance of having a plan and go on to describe the key components of a marketing plan and a marketing communication plan. They also include a great communication checklist you can use to self-evaluate all aspects of how your library comes across. The few pages spent on this are really useful stuff and are a great primer for getting up to speed in the area.
Then it’s on to the details of word-of-mouth marketing, and the 5 things you must have (and how to get them):
1. A good product and great customer service
2. A plan
3. A clear, conscious, consistent message
4. A prepared and committed sales force
5. People willing to testify
The book includes reports from the fifteen of the 35 libraries that participated in the Buzz Project that the book authors were involved with. These give rich detail about specific WOMM projects. Each mini case-study gives an introduction, the goals and objectives, key audiences, the message, strategies, tools, budget, impact and lessons learned. These provide a great framework you could use yourself, not to mention some inspiration. The overwhelming number of examples are from public libraries, but there is a case study from BP Information Services which showed how they used a staff survey to increase awareness of their services and to better target new resources to a globally dispersed workforce. It looks like three academic libraries were part of the wider project so it’s a little disappointing none of them made it to the book. Regardless of that there is highly useful information and examples in this book relevant to all sectors.
I emerged from my Sunday morning slumber this morning to hear an interview on Radio New Zealand National with Harry Beckwith, author of Unthinking: the surprising forces behind what we buy.
It sounds like an interesting read on the psychology of why we make the purchase decisions that we do.
This link should get you to the podcast (for as long as RNZN has it up on their site)
… I got my very own copy of Kathy Dempsey’s book The accidental library marketer.
One of the many excellent parts of this book is a description of what Dempsey calls The cycle of true marketing. You can see a diagram of the cycle on her website, but you’ll need to get hold of the book to get a full description 🙂 Essentially the cycle outlines the steps that are necessary to do marketing correctly, which enable you to maximise the results of your marketing activities.
… is the title of a great book by Devora Zack.
Zack is keen to reframe networking “as an opportunity to create meaningful connections, requiring skills such as listening, focus and depth”. Her key point is that introverts should not try to be extroverts – it simply won’t work – but encourages them instead to focus on the gifts introverts have. Having said that, Zack is careful to dispel stereotypes about introverts and extroverts and points out that there are variations within these broad categories and everyone has bits and pieces of both traits. There are also those who end up in the middle and Zack calls these folks centroverts.
If this sounds all like a load of nonsense, I have to say I’m an introvert, although I don’t come across as that to some, and I found this book hugely helpful. And I don’t actually hate networking, I just feel I am very clumsy at it sometimes. My level of introversion really depends on what situation I am in, and how I am feeling. I do genuinely enjoy talking to people and finding out what makes me tick. What frustrates me is that networking skills don’t always feel that they come easy to me. I may turn up to occasions that present a fantastic networking opportunity only to feel somewhat “struck dumb” and have no idea of how to strike up conversations with people. Zack suggests three strategies for introverts – pause (research), process (focus) and pace (restore).
So what are these 3 Ps all about?
There’s another library marketing book in the pipeline. Nancy Dowd is currently working on a book that seeks to bridge the gap between marketing theory and how librarians put in into practice. As she says (the bold text is my emphasis):
Marketing is still viewed by many libraries as an afterthought. Many departments purpose is to create posters and write press releases rather than help a library know their customers and help to create relevant programs, products and services.
Kathy [Dempsey] began an important conversation in her book, The Accidental Marketer, when she outlined and defined each step of true marketing (see image here). Mary Evangeliste, Jonathan Silberman and I wrote our book about ways you could break those steps into Bite-Sized pieces. But even with those two books on the shelves, there is still a disconnect between theory and reality.
Nancy is seeking contributions to make the book as relevant as possible to “enact the changes needed for libraries to take advantage of marketing and help them make the changes needed that will position them as essential organizations to fund”.
You can read more about her ideas for the book and how you can contribute over at The M World – Marketing Libraries blog.