Tag Archives: reading

Library Communications Journal – a new journal for library communications professionals

Exciting to see this actually happening after the inaugural conference I attended in 2011, with great sessions on digital signage and social media, among others. Now I just have to start brainstorming some article ideas. On that topic, how do you generate and record ideas? I have found, over the years and to my disappointment, that my workplace culture is not one of idea-generation. I’m not sure what it would take to be one — article or book clubs, staff teams built around common library goals, like user experience? — but it’s definitely not here. Now that I’m back into more of a habit of reading blogs, articles & books (one of my professional goals for 2012), I’m struggling with how to keep track of the ideas that I generate upon reading. Would love to hear your ideas!

CFP: Library Communications Journal – a new journal for library communications professionals

As part of the formation of The Association of Library Communications and Outreach Professionals (ALCOP) which is scheduled to be announced on or before February 15th, a new online journal focused on library communications has been established, and we are now seeking articles for the first issue.

Library Communications Journal will be an online quarterly publication available to ALCOP members and will feature practical articles on a diverse range of issues of concern to library communications professionals today. At the helm of the new journal will be Ms. Jordan Strohl, an experienced journalist who has been a contributor to many professional journals focused on communications. Jordan will serve as the Managing Editor and Assistant to the Publisher.

We are seeking articles on such topics as:

•        using social media to promote libraries
•        ideas for outreach to underserved populations
•        innovative program ideas and how to promote them
•        how to motivate the library staff
•        using technology in promoting the library
•        how to plan a great special event
•        best practices for working with the media
•        fostering student engagement with the academic library

… and many other issues relevant to you and how you do your job

We also seek all kinds of “how to” articles as well as book reviews on new texts focusing on library marketing and public relations.

The journal will welcome articles directed at a general audience or specifically for practitioners serving public, academic, or special libraries.

We are seeking articles no more than 2,000 words in length and book reviews should not be more than 400 words. LCJ allows all authors to retain copyright privileges to their work.

To be considered for the inaugural issue of Library Communications Journal, please submit your articles in Word format to Jordan Strohl at librarycomm@yahoo.com no later than February 15, 2012. Please address any questions to Jordan at that same email address.

We hope you will be part of our first issue schedule to be published in the early Spring.

 

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Recommended (library) marketing books

There’s been a discussion happening over on the academicpr listserv about good (library)  marketing books, so I  thought I’d gather the collected wisdom here as a sort of to-read list for myself and others who are interested in keeping up with this field. I’ve read some but not all of these. I highly recommend Marketing Today’s Academic Library to anyone who does outreach for an academic library and The Accidental Library Marketer if you’re in charge of marketing at an academic, special, or public library. I teach heavily from both of these texts in my online course, “Marketing Your Library.” Steve Krug’s books are essential for anyone getting started in web usability. I read them back when I was in grad school and interning at Credo Reference (then called Xrefer), and I was asked to work with the founder on the first usability test of the site. I also referred back to Krug when spearheading a redesign of the library site at Lafayette College (that was a few years ago, and now we’re once again in the thick of a redesign). No one mentioned Seth Godin’s books, but they always come highly recommended and are definitely on my to-read list.

Marketing Today’s Academic Library: A Bold New Approach to Communicating with Students by Brian Mathews

The Accidental Library Marketer by Kathy Dempsey

Rocket Surgery Made Easy: The Do-It-Yourself Guide to Finding and Fixing Usability Problems by Steve Krug

Don’t Make Me Think! A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability by Steve Krug

Creating Your Library Brand by Elisabeth Dovcett

Creating the Customer-Drive Academic Library by Jeannette Woodward

Marketing and Public Relations Practices in College Libraries by Anita Lindsay

Bite-sized Marketing : Realistic Solutions for the Overworked Librarian by Nancy Dowd, Mary Evangeliste, and Jonathan Silberman

The Visible Librarian: Asserting Your Value with Marketing and Advocacy by Judith Siess

Listening to the Customer by Peter Hernon and Joseph Matthews

I would also add:

Building a Buzz: Libraries and Word-of-Mouth Marketing by Peggy Barber and Linda Wallace

Words That Work: It’s Not What You Say, It’s What People Hear by Frank Luntz

Once I figure out how to do it, I want to display these visually (help, anyone?).

What are your favorite (library) marketing books?

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Capturing stories

I just started reading a really interesting article that appears in the January 2012 issue of portal: Libraries and the Academy: “Research Papers Have Always Seemed Very Daunting”: Information Literacy Narratives and the Student Research Experience” by Robert Detmering and Anna Marie Johnson. I love narrative.  It personally speaks to me a lot more than numbers. As they write, “In the face of assessment literature on information literacy, student voices have been missing for the most part.”

What I’m especially interested in is how those narratives can then be harnessed to make improvements or how they can be shared to promote services. Project Information Literacy just announced the release of a new “Practical PIL” page on their web site that showcases how schools have been using PIL findings to develop new sites, sources, and materials. I really like it.

Over the past few years, I’ve started a few different interview series–one with faculty about ways in which they are incorporating information literacy into the classroom and another with honors students about the process of researching and writing a thesis. The goal of the information literacy interviews–which are published in our biannual faculty newsletter–is to encourage more faculty to build information literacy into their courses and to collaborate with librarians on information literacy instruction. It’s a lot more powerful for faculty to hear from each other than it is for them to hear from librarians. The honors thesis interviews are also meant to showcase librarians’ work, but also to offer support to thesis students by capturing the stories of those that have gone before them.

I’d love to hear more from others about narratives and stories that you are capturing, and how you’re using them.

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Winter break in academia

It’s winter break in academia, which is prime time for librarians like me to reflect on the past semester, get through the to-do list that built up during busy times, browse & read, experiment with new programs, take time off, meet with colleagues and faculty, file, and start planning for the coming semester. I’m really enjoying stepping out of my day-to-day work to let ideas percolate. I increasingly believe in turning off the computer every once in a while (I do every Saturday) to just let the dust settle. Here’s my (partial) list of things to do or try over the winter break:

  1. Play around with Mendeley. I’m dissatisfied with RefWorks 2.0 and intrigued by Mendeley’s faculty focus (with its pdf ingestion), the social/sharing aspect, as well as the free price tag. I took an online workshop but need to just spend some time playing with it in both its desktop and web versions.
  2. Work on Bytes & Books, the biannual faculty/staff/Friends newsletter I produce. This is an exciting time for me because I’m working with the College’s Communications Division (thanks, Kevin Hardy!) on an image rehaul. I’m excited to share the before-and-after with you when it’s all done.
  3. Prep for my third time teaching “Marketing Your Library” for the online continuing education program at Simmons GSLIS. I would like to tighten up the readings and assignments in weeks 3 & 4, which focus too broadly on emotional branding, designing messages, word-of-mouth marketing, value, and statistics. This involves doing some reading — on my list are Listening to the Customer and College Libraries and Student Culture: What We Now Know and making some tough decisions about paring down.
  4. Plan my first library web site video. Yesterday, I had a tutorial on iMovie with an instructional technologist on campus (thanks, Jason Alley!) to prepare me to conquer a longstanding goal to produce short videos for the library web site. I took some footage of the (alas, empty) library on a Flip camera that my library dean bought me and was surprised to learn how easy  iMovie is. The hard part for me will be coming up with tight ideas and editing the voice and images into something interesting to look at since I’m not a particularly visual person.
  5. Read, read, read, and come up with a schedule to do more reading. How do you fit blog, magazine, article and book reading into your weekly schedule? My pile of old Library Journals has gotten out of hand.

What are you working on over winter break?

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