Improving library services to generate more traffic, on and off line

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Summary of the Problem:

Public libraries are losing their popularity and their role as intellectual innovative cultural centers. Public libraries need new branding in community and society; they need to apply new approaches of using technologies to improve existing and new services, and to keep users and attract new ones.

Summary of the Proposed Solution:

  • Equip library with necessary technologies (computers, printers, scanners, projectors, etc.)
  • Provide high-speed wireless Internet connection in library
  • Educate librarians about IT, marketing, sales, PR
  • Work with library managers on updating the management approach, create SWOT analysis, short-term and long-term strategies, action plans
  • Research the existing demand of youth/users for “library they would attend”
  • Implement new services for users, constant update of provided services

    - Training opportunities for users

    - Access to information (books, articles, government documents, stat information, etc.)

    - Reading E-books

    - IT Services and consultations for users (helping to fill out official papers/forms/application, online payments – ex. communal services, online purchasing, internet banking)

    - Online services for users

    - Discussion Youth Clubs (offline and online)

    - Using SMS and email for reminders, marketing, announcements

  • Implement active PR 2.0 = IR (Internet Relations)

    - Blogging

    - Online Media offices

    - Social networking

  • Building partnerships

    - Government (a. Government, ex. City councils will order the digitalization of existing documents that can be requested by citizens; b. Statistics departments; c.)

    - NGOs (a. Invite Youth organization to libraries to conduct events, co-initiate discussion clubs; b. Professional organization to provide professional trainings, master classes)

    - Private Sector as sponsors, partner for the events, etc.

Technology to Solve the Problem

  • Blogs (independent – ex. Wordpress, or on other platforms – ex. Thematic blog on the popular web-site)
  • Social networks
  • Video hosting (ex. Youtube)
  • Podcasting platform
  • Multimedia software/tools
  • Mapping
  • Online crowd sourcing

Existing solutions or relevant links:

Wikis (mediawiki, pbwiki, etc.) Wordpress/Drupal Existing popular social networks (Facebook, vKontakte, Odnoklassniki) Mapbox, Ushahidi

Follow-on Actions:

1. Make SWOT analysis for library, other research if necessary

2. Set 1-2 long-term goals (SMART) and 3-4 short-term goals (SMART)

3. Identify at least 1 new service for users

4. Identify resources, attract necessary ones

5. Develop the Action Plan for library (ex. for 1 year)

6. Develop the Implementation plan for the new service

7. Analyze the results of new services and make a decision: continue, decline or adopt/update

8. Continue with next new services [steps 3, 4, 6, 7]

9. Analyze the results of Action Plan

10. Go to 1

Video [1]