Creating Your Library Brand


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  • Hi, I’m Liz Doucett, your trainer today. Hopefully you had a chance to take a look at the branding resources that were sent out to everyone prior to today’s class I think they provided a good introduction to the topic of branding and were interesting at the same time.
  • The agenda for today has three key items. We are going to talk about: - What is branding? Why should I care about doing it? - How can I get started? My goal is that when you leave today you should have a basic understanding of branding and a down-to-earth, practical set of action steps that you can employ to create a library brand. Because I want to make sure you have enough details to help you when you leave this presentation, there is a lot more verbiage than I normally use on each slide. I hope you’ll forgive that but it is meant to make your life easier! To help me understand my audience, I have a short poll for you… QUESTION: How many people here have a library brand? Yes or no Ok – for those of you that have one, do you think it is a good one? Yes or no Last question – for those of you who said your brand was a good one – do you think you have a good understanding of what makes a good brand? Yes or no
  • So, let’s get going by starting with the basics of what is branding… I usually do this to ensure that we are all using the same language.
  • For clarity, many of us in libraries use the words “marketing” and “branding” interchangeably. BUT – they aren’t the same thing. Branding is one of many different activities that make up marketing. Let me show you what I mean by that.
  • This slide gives you a broad overview of the marketing process. Marketing is an umbrella term that encompasses multiple activities. When someone says they are doing “marketing” at their library, that can mean a whole lot of things. Generally, marketing falls into one of two major types – marketing strategy and marketing tactics. Marketing strategy is the planning part of marketing. It should happen before you actually do any marketing activity. Marketing tactics are the steps you take to execute your marketing strategy.
  • Let’s get a little more detailed. I’ve taken marketing strategy and tactics and broken them into their basic components. You can get more detailed than this but for now, this is a good place to start. When I talk about marketing strategy being planning I mean the following: You need to identify what you want your marketing to accomplish – your goals. Do you want your marketing to bring new people into your library for a special event or service? Or do you want the people who already use the library to use it more often? Or do you want some combination of both? Why is this important? Because the tactics that you end up using will vary depending on which marketing goal you are trying to accomplish. Next you need to identify who you are directing your marketing toward – what audience? We will talk more about your audience in a bit. Finally, you want to develop your brand which is made up of your story, your tagline for that story, your brand feeling and your logo AFTER you develop your strategy, you move to developing marketing tactics which are the tools that will help you tell your story to your audience. This might include advertising or publicity or any number of other tools. We are not going to talk about those elements of marketing today since that is a whole other class. So – bottom-line, when people tell me that they are doing marketing in their library, my question generally is “what kind of marketing” – as you can see from this chart, that might mean any number of things!
  • Now, let’s dig a little deeper into each of these elements, starting with the audience. Defining your audience in academic terms is not really part of branding. However, I always bring defining your audience up when I talk about branding because I think it is a critical component of any marketing that you do and the more carefully you define your audience, the better all of your marketing is apt to be.
  • Why is the audience for your marketing important to consider? There are many people who might be interested in your story – library users, nonusers, old, young, middle-aged, book lovers, movie lovers Your goal is to make sure that the audience that HAS to hear your story, hears it.
  • Why does this matter? If you know who you are trying to reach You can deliver a very relevant message, focused on addressing the needs of that audience You can also be efficient in how you deliver that message, making sure that you use the “language” that works for that audience And be able to hear what that audience has to say in response – are they responding to your message
  • Look at it this way Would you tell your library’s story the same way to each of these two groups? Your story might be exactly the same – our library is important because it opens up all sorts of possibilities for our community. However, the WAY you tell it in this situation is going to be very different. If it is critical that seniors hear your marketing message, then you need to make sure your marketing is developed in such a way that seniors will hear and respond to it. That isn’t the same way that a room full of kids might hear and respond to it.
  • Usually at this point someone ways – but the library is for everyone. Well, yes, the library IS for everyone and I’m not arguing with any part of that. And, in the ideal world you would tell your story to everyone But, marketing costs money and in a world of finite resources (which most of us face) You need to spend your money where you can have the biggest impact You need to focus your marketing on reaching the audience that you want to MAKE ABSOLUTELY SURE hears your message So, you get as knowledgeable as you can about your audience to make sure your marketing is effective.
  • Now that we’ve talked about defining your audience, let’s get down to the details of branding. The heart of branding is articulating your library’s story. By story I mean – why does your library matter to your community? This is the most important slide you will see today – figuring out WHY YOUR LIBRARY MATTERS
  • Why does your library matter to your community? What can your library do in your community that makes a difference in the lives of the people of your community? Your story ISN’T a list of what you provide to your community. It IS the benefit that your community derives from those things that you provide. If you have a library mission, your story about why your library matters to your community should have a close relationship to your mission statement. At my library I didn’t start developing our branding until AFTER we had updated the library’s mission/vision and strategic plan. Your story should appeal to the heart more than the mind. We aren’t listing our services – we’re telling people why the library makes a difference to our community. You need to think emotionally versus intellectually because people respond much more quickly to emotion than they do to their brains.
  • Take two minutes to think about your library’s story. Write it out Was this exercise easy, hard, inbetween?
  • Now let’s move on to the next element of branding – defining how you want people to feel when they interact with your brand. Do you want people to feel connected? Part of a community? Happy? Smart? Part of a shared history? Involved? These are all questions you need to ask yourself as you develop your brand.
  • A brand has to encompass the feelings of its users. Your brand is about every experience they have when they walk through the door of the library, when they talk to a staff member, when they borrow books or come to a program. In this slide you are going to see a video shot when the Apple store in NY started selling iPads. The questions I want you to think about as you watch the video are… What are the feelings that Apple wants its users to have about its brand? What are the Apple employees doing to promote those feelings? Do the Mac users standing in line have feelings about the Apple brand? Do you think people have as strong feelings about your library when they walk in the door there? Wouldn’t you love it if they did!
  • So – now I want you to take 2 minutes and identify 10 words that describe the emotions you want your library users to feel when they see your brand. Share those with us and I will read some of them. Can you see how powerful these words are? And, don’t they tell you much more about your brand than saying things like “we provide good customer service” or “we have ebooks”? Hold on to these words as we go into the next section…
  • Now we are going to talk about developing a tagline. After you figure out who you are talking to, what your library’s story is and how you want people to feel about your brand, you need to be able to boil it all down to a TAGLINE – an attention grabbing way of telling your story in one, short intriguing statement
  • This is Apple’s tagline I think it tells their “story” perfectly – it is quick, simple to “get” and compelling Who doesn’t want to be seen as someone who “thinks different”? This is the type of simplicity that you are striving for.
  • Remembering that a tagline must tell your story quickly and make it compelling and get across a lot of information about the brand quickly, look at these taglines and pick one that you think is the best & click that number Then click on the number of the tagline above that you see as being the least effective.
  • We aren’t going to write a tagline here because it takes some quiet thinking time but here are the basic steps I go through to develop a tagline. Start with your story that you write and the way you want people to feel when they interact with your brand Pick out the key words Think about alternatives to those words Try writing several options As yourself….does my tagline encompass my story, is it compelling, will it be relevant to my community, is it easy to say? Test the tagline Funny is ok, emotional is ok – but make sure people understand what you are saying quickly
  • The final step in branding is putting everything together in a logo that tells your story and conveys your brand feeling visually. By putting your logo “out there” over and over again, people will start to connect your logo with your story & your brand feeling without having to think about it. And, that’s what your are ultimately striving for – quick understanding of everything your brand represents.
  • A logo helps cut through the clutter – it helps tell the story” of the brand without having to be explicit The brand’s logo is NOT the brand - the logo is a reminder of the brand A logo by itself is not generally a brand Unless the brand is very established A logo is particularly helpful in a world of information overload Visually arresting, breaks through the clutter
  • These are all old, established brands. They can stand alone without taglines because people know what they stand for as brands and they have been telling their stories for years and years. However, odds are your library is NOT an old established brand so it is important that your logo includes a tagline!
  • Do these logos/taglines tell a story? Do they evoke an emotion? Do they grab your attention? Do the logo and tagline work together?
  • So – now we’ve gone through the details of branding – a brand is made up of first defining your audience, then telling your story, developing a tagline, identifying your brand feeling and building a logo that puts it all together and finally….repeat, repeat, repeat
  • So, keeping all of this in mind, I’m going to read you information about three brands and you identify after each one if it is a strong brand…
  • This is a brand that I think does a great job of articulating its story. Volvo – it’s promise is safety and they make it a real mantra in the organization.
  • “ It’s all about the beer”
  • Maxwell House Coffee has one of the oldest brands in the country. Their logo is…Good to the last drop…which I’m guessing everyone here could identify immediately. The company tried to change their logo about 15 years ago and then gave up when they realized that “Good to the last drop” was so firmly rooted in consumers’ minds that nothing else was EVER going to stick. I don’t know why that’s a negative – I think that is what most marketers strive for in their branding!
  • As all of us who are librarians know – the library isn’t the only place to go anymore for information. We used to OWN the information story – but not anymore!
  • Average American – 3,000 marketing messages a day American newspapers - more than 10 million tons of newsprint/year Average person consumes 94 pounds of newsprint a year The Internet In 1985 – 6 domain names registered Today – 63 million domain names registered Exponential increase in cell phone use 1985 – 340,000 cell phone subscribers Today – 175 million!
  • Think about how many of those sources brand and market themselves and talk about what they provide Sadly, if libraries aren’t part of the “conversation” We get forgotten
  • Cut through the clutter Clear, consistent message and look What makes YOUR library unique in YOUR community – what makes the library relevant
  • Helps with funding Everyone understands the library’s role in the community More than just a “nice to have” – instead a “have to have” Builds opportunities for partnerships
  • Branding has another benefit – it puts everyone on the same page in your library Clear message Clear audience to whom you are conveying the message A plan of action that everyone can understand Synchronized promotional efforts to achieve one goal Greater awareness of resources/services/programs
  • Finally and most importantly – good branding (and marketing) leads to increased usage of your library as people understand what your library can provide to them
  • No clear story No clear visual connection Unmemorable tagline, not relevant to my audience We needed to: Clarify our message Update our logo Find a better way of visually connecting the library with its partners Sub-brands within the library Spent a lot of time reading/considering OCLC study “From Awareness to Funding” Determined that we wanted our library to move from informational to transformational New tagline “A world of possibility”
  • In actuality if you have been doing the exercises as we’ve gone along today, you have already gotten started in developing a library brand. However, just to make sure that you have clear, concrete steps to move forward with, I’ll give you the key steps that you can focus on when you leave here today.
  • Collect a representative sample of your marketing materials Pin them all on one wall where you can review Ask yourself these questions: Can I tell by looking at these materials what role my library takes in its community? What is my message? Do I like my logo? Does it reflect visually what makes my library special? Based on the look of the materials, would I know that they all came from the same organization?
  • Talk to Patrons, Board, Staff Can they tell you about: Audience Story Tagline Logo Feeling Confirm or deny Your own impressions from an audit about your story, your look Is there consistency?
  • Compare what you saw in the audit and what you heard in constituent discussions Do you find consistency in what people say? Does your message come through? Do people seem to find the message meaningful? Do people have feelings about your brand and are they the right feelings, meaning the ones you want?
  • Creating Your Library Brand

    1. 1. CreatingYourLibraryBrand
    2. 2. Agenda Creating your library brand  What is branding?  Why should I care about it?  How to get started branding 2
    3. 3. WHAT is branding? 3
    4. 4. For clarity Branding IS NOT the same thing as marketing  It IS one of the first steps in marketing
    5. 5. MarketingMarketing Strategy Planning Marketing Tactics Execution
    6. 6. Marketing Marketing Strategy - Planning Goals Audience Branding Story: Feeling: Tagline: Logo: Marketing Tactics - ExecutionPromotions Advertising Direct PR Publicit Sales marketing y
    7. 7. before branding Defining your audience Who do you want to talk to about your library? 7
    8. 8. Ask yourself When you do any marketing:  Who is my audience? Are you talking to everyone in your community? Or are you talking to one or more specific sub- sets in your community?  Moms & dads?  Seniors?  Teens? 8
    9. 9. Why does this matter? If you know who you are trying to reach You can make sure your story is said in such a way that your audience can “get” it And you can make sure that your story is said in such a way as to be relevant to your audience 9
    10. 10. Would you tell a story about your library the same wayto each of these two audiences? 10
    11. 11. But the library is for everyone! 11
    12. 12. What is branding? Figuring out the story Why your library matters to your community
    13. 13. Story Your story is telling your community - WHY DOES THE LIBRARY MATTER?  Appeal to the emotions  Don’t list services 13
    14. 14. Exercise: what is your library’s story? Think about “Why your library matters in your community” (however you define community) Two to four sentences at the most Try NOT to list the services that your library offers Instead, ask yourself:  What makes your library special or unique in your town? 14
    15. 15. What is branding? Identifying a feeling That you want people to get when they see or interact with your brand 15
    16. 16. Branding is: A feeling 16
    17. 17.  Emotions are powerful and evocative That’s why they are important If your brand has an emotional connection to your library patrons then you have developed a powerful connection Once you define how you want your users to feel about your library, everything you do should be to promote those feelings 17
    18. 18. EXERCISE Identify 10 words that describe how you want your library’s users to feel when they interact with your library “brand” 18
    19. 19. What is branding? Developing a tagline That will tell your story in a short, attention-grabbing way
    20. 20. 20
    21. 21. Exercise: Pick the best, Pick the worst1)Boston Public Library 5)Quaker OatsBooks are just the beginning Warms you heart and soul 6)The Library of Congress2)West Palm Beach Public More than a libraryLibraryAn oasis of knowledge 7)CameraWorld For negative people.3) TysonWe’re chicken.4)Red CrossTogether we can save a life
    22. 22. How to write a tagline Start with your library’s story that you wrote out a few minutes ago and the words you used to define your brand “feeling” Pick out the most critical words Think about alternatives to these words  Areany of them more powerful than the original words you used?  Do the words articulate what makes your library unique? 22
    23. 23. What is branding? Putting it all together in a logo That you use over & over again, until people “get” your brand without having to think
    24. 24. The logo The logo is important  As a jog to one’s memory  As the repository of the feelings about the brand The brand’s logo becomes the users’ touchstone  Every time the customer sees the brand (logo) - reminded of the brand story A logo helps cut through the clutter – it “tells the story” of the brand without having to be explicit 24
    25. 25. 25
    26. 26. What do you think of these logos/taglines? 26
    27. 27. How do you develop a logo? I always suggest using a professional if you can fund it  They understand the need to have visual elements reflect your story  They get the use of color, design, shape  It is a lot harder than you might think A creative design can make a huge difference in a logo If you don’t have $ to hire a professional, I’ll 27
    28. 28. Finally –Repeat, repeat, repeat Tell your story over and over and over Be consistent in the story and the look Why? Your audience will eventually know your story as soon as they see your brand – that’s what you want  They know why your library matters
    29. 29. SO…Branding =(define your audience) story + tagline + FEELING + LOGO 29
    30. 30.  We’ve talked about what branding is Now, let’s talk about what a STRONG brand is 30
    31. 31. A strong brand A strong brand has: A story and tagline that are compelling  And relevant to the audience A logo that conveys that story without words  The ability to get the chosen audience to respond to the logo/brand with feeling  Consistent use – over and over and over 31
    32. 32. VOLVO SAVED MY LIFE CLUBThe letters have been coming to us for years. Men and women writingabout how they believe a car helped save their lives. The Volvo Saved MyLife Club recognizes these "survivors" faith in Volvo, as well as Volvosdedication to building cars worthy of such admiration. In fact, the onlydownside to the Volvo Saved My Life Club is the condition formembership.Once its determined that an accident was severe enough that theperformance of a Volvo did, indeed, help save the lives of the passengers,they become members of the Volvo Saved My Life Club.And, while were very proud to be able to sponsor an organization like theVolvo Saved My Life Club, we hope for the day when potentially fatal caraccidents will be a thing of the past.Until then, we end with this heartfelt wish and advice: Drive safely.
    33. 33.  Tastes great Less filling Lite Beer from Miller: Everything youve always wanted in a beer. And less.
    34. 34. 34
    35. 35.  Remember – a strong brand has: A story and tagline that are compelling  And relevant to the audience A logo that conveys that story without words  The ability to get the chosen audience to respond to the logo/brand with feeling  Consistent use – over and over and over 35
    36. 36. WHY should I care aboutbranding? 36
    37. 37. We aren’t the only game in town anymore 37
    38. 38. It’s averynoisyworld 38
    39. 39. If we can’t tell our story, whyshould anyone care? 39
    40. 40. 40
    41. 41. HELPS WITH FUNDING 41
    42. 42. Facilitates teamwork 42
    43. 43. Brings more people in the door 43
    44. 44. Case study 44
    45. 45. Brand audit 45
    46. 46. Our story Our core audience  Library users, seniors, parents  People who are community oriented  Interest in “the common good” We developed our story  CurtisMemorial Library matters because we offer “possibility” to our community  Community pride = possibility 46
    47. 47. Tagline Possibility was “the” word Curtis Memorial Library Creating a world of possibility 47
    48. 48. Our logo Our logo was old and out-of-date No one understood why the ship 48
    49. 49. What does “possibility” look like?
    50. 50. What does “possibility” look like?
    51. 51. What does “A world of possibility” look like?
    52. 52. What does “A world of possibility” look like?
    53. 53. What does “A world of possibility” look like?
    54. 54. What does “A world of possibility” looklike?
    55. 55. 55
    56. 56. 56
    57. 57. 57
    58. 58. 58
    59. 59. 59
    60. 60. 60
    61. 61. 61
    62. 62. 62
    63. 63. 63
    64. 64. 64
    65. 65. 65
    66. 66. 66
    67. 67. 67
    68. 68. How to get started 68
    69. 69. How to get started 1. Do a marketing audit 69
    70. 70. How to get started During your audit Ask yourself these questions:  Can I tell by looking at these materials what role my library takes in its community? What is my story?  Am I telling that story in a compelling way with a tagline?  Does my brand evoke a 70
    71. 71. How to get started2. Talk toyourconstituents 71
    72. 72. How to get started 3. Compare audit & conversation 72
    73. 73.  If there is no playback of a consistent story, then you need to start by working on that If there is playback but it is confusing, make sure your story is clear If the story is there but no feelings are be evoked, you need to revisit how you are trying to articulate those feelings If playback is consistent, then move on to the next step…your brand tagline
    74. 74. Writing a tagline Review your story Start with the ten words that you identified as summarizing the “feeling” that you want people to have when they interact with your brand Reduce your story to one sentence  Try using different words to get the right feeling  Look at what other libraries/brands have done What you end up with should answer the 74
    75. 75.  Inc. Magazine article:  http://  http:// Tagline generator  75
    76. 76. Designing a logo Unless you are a design artist – don’t try to do it yourself A logo needs to reflect your brand via its visual elements: color, shapes, energy Good article about how designers think about developing a logo – very useful  KISS  76
    77. 77.  Ways of getting design work done – for free (or almost)  Local high school or college art class or business class project  Do it yourself (,,  Use web options (not free but cheap),  Find pro bono expertise through your Board 77
    78. 78. 78
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    80. 80. Support each other Get together with other library folks and work together – make this a project for a group  Share ideas, solve problems together Branding is:  Common sense  Focus on the story The first step? Jump in Have some fun – it is a creative process! 80
    81. 81.  You can develop smart and interesting  Click to edit the branding outline text format And it will have a real and positive impact on  Second Outline how your community views your library! Level GOOD LUCK! − Third Outline Level  Fourth Outline Level 81