Biblioshock! Establishing a marketing oriented culture in an academic library
Burke, L., Boccardo, S. and Webster, A. (2007) Biblioshock! Establishing a marketing oriented culture in an academic library. In: AVCC Marketing, Communications and Development Conference 2007 "Tying it all Together", 28 - 30 March 2007, Langham Hotel, Southbank, Melbourne
Traditionally the academic library has had a central place or role within the university. It has long been considered an important - and relatively unchanging - part of campus life. The building housed books that students borrowed and the staff provided similar services from year to year. There was no real need for the library to market itself to the university community and beyond.
The nature of the information services environment is changing dramatically. Developments in information technology have transformed the way people search for and locate information. The higher education sector has also changed dramatically with universities now competing for federally funded local students and full fee paying international students studying both on-shore and off-shore. Pedagogical theory has also changed resulting in the need for different types of library spaces and services. University students are a totally new breed; libraries now need to engage the ‘Google generation’.
To remain relevant, academic libraries need to reflect the vibrancy of the environment in which they operate. The University of Western Australia Library is meeting this challenge by embracing both intellectually and culturally the need for a customer focus and strategic marketing. This has resulted in:
•the formation of a new dedicated Marketing Team that reports to the Library Executive
•recognising that the Library is more than what is contained within the four walls
•actively engaging with user groups and being driven more by their feedback
•developing mechanisms to share the Library’s response to feedback
•refining long standing policies and procedures in order to become more ‘yes’ than ‘no’
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