INASP-Marketing and Advocacy of Library and Information services

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NATIONAL UNIVERSITY OF RWANDA (NUR):
Marketing and Advocacy Workshop
22nd-25th July 2012
Re-cap Of Day One Presentations
by
Stephen ECONYU
Adventist University of Central Africa (AUCA)
[email protected]/[email protected]
Marketing in Libraries: a challenge worth pursuing.
Gallant Ladies and Gentlemen; marketing in
Libraries is all about foreseeing tomorrow than
today as away of fore telling the needs of patrons.
Identifications of such needs according to the users
seeking behaviors and the services necessary to
meet such needs. All in all it’s all about being
proactive but accompanied with actions.
A library must be able to pull users to the Library
rather than chase them a way. In other words be
part of push and pull factors.
Librarians must be able to push nearer to users with
services exactly where they are. However, here
communications matters.
Emerging Technologies must be integrated into the day to
day Library works. That is;
WEB 2.0 technologies: information sharing (applications that
facilitate participatory information sharing, interoperability,
user-centered design, and collaboration on the World Wide
Web.)
SaaS:
Video and Web collaboration
Social networks , etc.
Marketing and promotions in LIS requires well designed
plans considering the 4Ps. (i.e. product, people, place,
price). These must be adopted by Librarians if they are to
succeed.
Goals, objectives, mission and vision statements, as
well as Core Values for Our Libraries should be
established as way of defining our destinies as we
endeavor to deliver distinctive quality services to patrons.
While marketing we must put attention on 5 laws of
LIS as Sir. Sheiyala Ramamrita Ranganathan puts it;
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
Every book is for use
Every user his or her book
Every book its reader
Save the time of the user
A library is a growing organism
Thus, As Library Heads; we should not easily give up
with advocating for Library developmental issues such
as funding; but we may push and push till it yields
results because its worth….”if you can’t then quit”
Partnership, networking and knowledge transfer are
among the key success pillars for successful Librarians.
This helps in interlibrary loaning that bridges the
existing gaps.
A look At Day to Day sins Committed by Librarians;
Permit me to give a little more hints on the sins
committed often by Librarians. Though Sir.
Ranganathan gave laws, relating to these; Librarians
and their identity vis-a- vis; how they appear before
users, work towards a common goal in an
organization; and linking these to the ways in which
users should view them and the services they
receive each time they come into contact. 7 key sins
appear to be common as Segal describes working
methods towards quality service delivery in libraries;
1. Apathy: showing no interest to users’ needs.
2. Brush-off: being busy doing something else i.e.
surfing, face booking, twitting, and having no time
to serve users.
3. Coldness: unfriendliness towards users while serving them.
4. Condescension: possessing superior attitude asking; have you looked
in the card catalog?
5. Robotism: acting more of a robot than a human.
6. Rule book: unbending to the laws.
7. Run around: sending the users to several possible places or persons
without knowing if it’s the right place or person.
In the era of ICT where we feel occupied all the time, acts like surfing,
face booking, twitting, and having no time to serve users among
Librarians is common especially those working on the issue desks
(circulations) instead of serving users on the queue.
As we strive to deliver quality professional services and products to
patrons; we must design certain Rules and Regulations to guide us;
otherwise, do not be surprised one day when your Library has
nothing remaining on shelves.
• It is only on such grounds that when these key
observations are put into practice because
Practice doesn't make perfect;…perfect practice
makes perfect.“ that we can conclude that first
session was worth it because we haven’t ‘learnt
nothing & forgot nothing’.
• Information Literacy is a challenge to Librarians
but not to Libraries. However, continues user
education especially on virtual resources can
harmonize it.
Conclusion
Its indeed true that Librarians have been under looked with a
common fallacy as “watchdogs over books.” it’s a high time we
came up and prove to the world that we are worth it through
professionalism, self conduct, integrity, Respect as custodians of
knowledge rather than ‘burry our noses under the sand’
Librarians who do not read books sooner than later will find
themselves out of touch with the real world. Librarians must often
read and get informed on various spheres of knowledge. They
would rather avoid gloomy faces when exhausted and vise vasa
during duty… ….”if you can’t… then quit.”
“A reading Parent, A reading Child, A better Nation”
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