How to market library services in school
How to market library services in school
Amit Thakur, Librarian
KV No1,GCF Jabalpur
The school library resource centre is not merely a physical space in which various media are stored; it is a concept, a tangible expression of the school’s ethos and values, its approaches to equality of opportunity, the moral and spiritual development of children and staff and its educational purposes. It has the potential to introduce staff to the world of literature and information and to enable them to develop skills which will enhance their lives as adults. The school library can provide staff and pupils alike with an unrivalled resource with which to support learning in school.
Library is the Heart of the School
School library has been considered as the heart of the school, since all the academic and co-curricular activities begin from there. For example the preparation of an assignment on global warming to getting information regarding the attire of the annual day performers, everyone needs the library. The quest of a child for knowledge starts from his/her interaction with people, places and ideas. The school library is the meeting point of ideas. Great minds with open arms are staying there in the form of books and multimedia. They are always ready to clear everyone’s doubts and help them to prosper.
Libraries in Kendriya Vidyalaya
The Libraries in Kendriya Vidyalayas have been changing. New concepts are creeping into the walled corridors of hidden information and knowledge. To cope with the pace of ever-changing information needs of teaching and learning community, the school libraries become more interactive and participatory. Being in the forefront of modern Indian Education system, the libraries in Kendriya Vidyalayas lead the way.
Condition of Libraries: – It is fact that most of the KVs Libraries are not properly maintained, due to the engagement of librarian in some other school works.
- No common classification schemes followed.
- No common cataloguing Schemes followed.
- Books are arranged according to subject-wise whereas some school has follows different classification scheme i.e. CC, DDC etc.
- However recently KVS adopted the New Library policy, in this policy all provisions are there but implementation is required so that the library will function smoothly.
Concept of marketing:-
Marketing is an ongoing process of planning and executing the marketing mix for information products, services or ideas to create exchange between individuals and organizations.
Marketing tends to be seen as a creative industry, which includes advertising, distribution and selling. It is also concerned with anticipating the customers’ future needs and wants, which are often discovered through market research.
Essentially, marketing is the process of creating or directing an organization to be successful in selling a product or service that people not only desire, but are willing to buy.
- Therefore good marketing must be able to create a “proposition” or set of benefits for the end customer that delivers value through information products or services.
MARKETING LIBRARY SERVICES TO CHILDREN AND STAFF: THE ROLE OF SCHOOLS LIBRARY SERVICES
When you think of promoting, you think of…
- Selling yourself, products or services
- Communicating, Collaborating, Consorting
- Brown-nosing, hob knobbing, fraternizing
- Making friends – in the right places
- Marketing (relationship), Manipulation?
- Mutual interest
- Longer term
- Emphasises satisfaction
n internal, external
Why promote yourself?
- Communicate what you do
- Stay in step with your clients and understand their needs
- Discover new opportunities and gain new ideas
- Understand the organisation of which you are part
- Deal with your personal and organisational vulnerability
- To succeed… and to survive!
Good promoters are made not born!
- There are skills that can be learned
- Practice makes perfect
- Watch how others do it and imitate
- Maintain the networks you create
- Take a course on selling, advertising
- Read a book on the topic
- Look the part – gestures are important
- BUT it is really all in the MIND
- Principal, support staff, careers adviser, teachers
- Suppliers, booksellers, former students?
- People who “matter” and people who don’t
- Targeted individuals
- Use the OSN (Old Student Network) to develop existing system.
- You need others more than they need you
- If you neglect others, they will neglect you
- Some people are just like you – others are not – understand them
- Be positive, not negative
- Adapt your style and approach
- If at first you don’t succeed, don’t give up – try, try and try again – practice makes perfect.
- Form advisory committees – staff and students
- Involve Staff in,, collection development, planning …and other library activities
- Plan ahead if you have key points to make and then make them
- Communicate clearly – Badging and branding
- Use school newspaper, local newspaper, advertising/ advertorial/brag – develop key messages and stories
- Respond to all complaints/ suggestions – promptly
- Hold events/displays/launches/ expose
Tips and tricks:-
- Be honest, be yourself!
- Make eye contact
- Have a good handshake
- Leave your comfort zone
- Lose your fear
- Push your boundaries – even if just a little!
- Adopt a “make it happen” attitude
- Have fun!
Absolute no nos!
- Don’t lie
- Don’t over-promise and under-deliver
- Don’t say one thing and do another
- Don’t apologise unnecessarily – but admit it when you stuff up
- Don’t be silent
- Don’t be insincere
- Don’t expect overnight success
- Don’t make excuses
Case Studies – prepare promotional strategies for:-
- The arrival of a new subject teacher at the school
- A group of students looking for material for an assignment on the Indian Culture
- The beginning of the school year
- The Olympic Games in 2008
There is need for changes in School Libraries.
ü Every school library must have its own library programme.
ü There should be professionally trained librarians and at least one assistant.
ü There must be continuous evaluation of its stock and services to analyse whether that cope with the ever-changing needs of the teaching and learning
ü To make the users skilled information users and life long learners, the school
Library media centers must change.
Need for library automation:-
- There is need of a common Library Software for automation of school library.
- It should be installed in all Kendriya Vidyalayas Library.
- All Libraries should be connected through Network /Internet.
- Libraries should be accessible all over the country through online cataloguing.
- Training of librarian/Library Personnel’s are most important factor.
- Common Classification scheme is required.
These marketing strategies and ideas are easy to follow, and can transform your library into a must visit destination for students, parents, teachers, and authorities. You’ll also discover an abundance of satisfied visitors-and a satisfied customer always comes back for more.