Marketing from the Circ Desk
So now I’m well entrenched in the Public Library world as the head of the Circulation Department, as well as a collection development team member and volunteer program manager. Several different hats are being worn at once. The first couple of months were mostly learning and settling into the various positions. Now I’m at the point where I have several schemes brewing. I say schemes in the nicest way because schemes sounds more fun than STRATEGIC PLANS FOR GROWTH or whatever.
As head of Circ, I do many general management type things but I’m also concentrated on three main goals: Increasing Circulation of Items, Increasing the number of Library Card holders in our district and Streamlining Circ processes to make things simpler for my pages to do the best they can. One of the schemes I thought of for increasing circulation would be to do a bit of marketing and promotion from the Circ Desk. Since I am the Head of Circ, one of my SUPREME POWERS is the ability to implement Fine Forgiveness. I can’t exactly wipe everyone’s overdue fines away and I wouldn’t want to do that anyway, BUT it can be a nice “prize” for some Circ Specific marketing.
I had the idea that it would be cool to do special promotions on our Facebook page for our followers. On a random day we would send out a message to our followers that gave them secret instructions they could use to get a nominal Fine Forgiveness waive. People would pay more attention to the Facebook feed and (hopefully) Circ more items because they had to come to the library circ desk to redeem the waive. There were several things I thought about after I had this idea. One would have to make it clear that the Fine Forgiveness must be for overdue fines only because we can’t take a dollar off from a lost item. Also, you would have to communicate with your staff, including all of the staff at the branches about what was going on. So this idea kind of sat in the back of my brain for a couple of weeks until…
We did it! It was a sunny Friday morning. It was about an hour before the library was opening, the Detroit Tigers had beat the Yankees to go on to the World Series and everybody was feeling really good. I had a Baseball display going on in the Children’s area and I was getting ready for the opening reference shift when I thought, “We should do something for the Tigers going to the World Series. Let’s do that Facebook thing!” So I made several calls down to Marketing and our Marketing person was all about it, so I then made several calls to our Branches telling them the plan and how it would work. Then I wrote a note on our Staff Intranet about it and THEN I told my circ staff about what was going to happen, including a note about the details at the circ desk. Only then did I post the thing to Facebook, and HERE IT IS!
Our marketing person was enthused about it and encouraged me to do similar things in the future. I WILL, my man. I will.