First, I want to say a huge thank you to everyone who filled out the library marketing survey I sent back in December. The survey is my way of understanding the challenges you face when trying to market your library. I use these results to create posts that will help you solve the biggest problems you run against in this complicated, wonderful job of library marketing. This is the second survey I’ve conducted–here are the results of the first survey.

This time, my survey apparently went global. I was so excited to get answers from library marketers from all over the world, including California, Alaska, Cuba, and Switzerland.

Here are the big takeaways.


  • 92 percent of respondents get information about the marketing industry and trends from blogs, 77 percent get information from webinars, 65 percent from personal development opportunities, and 62 percent from other marketers.
  • Only 15 percent of respondents are listening to podcasts and nearly 8 percent don’t follow any marketing industry news at all! Watch for: I’ll be sharing some great blogs, webinars, and podcasts to help my fellow library marketers learn more about marketing. These are free resources that you can use at your convenience.


  • 69 percent  of respondents say they know what content marketing is. 23 percent have a vague idea and 8 percent don’t know at all. Watch for: I’m working to show you some of the best library content marketing success stories in the coming months. There are some libraries doing inspiring work that we can all learn from.

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  • 50 percent of library marketers say their library has NO marketing strategy whatsoever. Watch for: It’s so important to have a strategy. That’s your road map, your reason to say yes and no to certain projects and demands. We’ll talk more about how to form a strategy, how to connect it to your library’s values and missions, and how to execute and measure the results.

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  • 54 percent of libraries say their library has NO social media strategy!meta-chart (4)
  • Along that same line, 65 percent of library marketers say that social media posts helps their strategy. 23 percent are not sure and 12 percent are just posting on social media because they are expected to. Watch for: More tips on how to create and implement a library social media strategy with goals that will help advance your library’s overall mission. In the meantime, for tips on social media for libraries, you can follow this great blog by my co-worker Adam Baker.

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  • 100 percent of library marketers who responded to the survey say they are using Facebook to reach their cardholders. 73 percent of libraries are on Twitter, 65 percent are on Instagram, 58 percent are on YouTube, and 50 percent are on Pinterest. Watch for: We’ll talk more about how and why you can use social media platforms other than Facebook to reach and engage with library cardholders. Again, Adam will be a great resource as I collaborate with him on future posts.

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  • 85 percent of library marketers say Facebook is the most effective social media platform for reaching their target audience. Nearly 8 percent say Instagram is most effective. Twitter and Pinterest were named as the most effective social media channel by 4 percent each of respondents. Watch for: At our library, we have seen Twitter and Pinterest posts pushing double-digit click numbers to our website. They also drive circulation and program attendance. We’ll talk more about how to use those social media platforms to their full advantage.

Finally, when asked about their most pressing concern, the overwhelming majority of library marketers say they want to do a better job at measuring the effectiveness of their campaigns. They also list a lack of time, a lack of funding, and making sure cardholders know about services as big worries. We’ll talk about all four of these issues in upcoming posts, especially the job of measuring the effectiveness of your marketing.

If you have any questions about the survey or questions you’d like to ask in a future survey, or any comments on this survey, share them with me in the comments section! And thanks again!!

Subscribe to this blog and you’ll receive an email every time I post. To do that, click on “Follow” button on the bottom left-hand corner of the page. Connect with me on Twitter and Snapchat–it’s where I talk about library marketing! I’m @Webmastergirl. I’m also on LinkedIn, Slideshare,  Instagram and Pinterest. Views in this post are my own and do not represent those of my employer.