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Making Amigos at Amigos

A great day in Texas. Mary and I gave our presentation/workshop to the Amigos folks in Dallas this past week. The workshop, “Can Libraries be Sold Like Soap?,” was similar to our CARL presentation but we did make a few adjustments. What’s great about the way we have structured the workshop is that we can easily tailor it to fit any size group. We’ve worked with groups as small as ten and as large as fifty. We can also easily cut or add activities to accommodate for time constraints. One hour workshops work, but they’re not as effective as the three hour workshops we have given.

“Can Libraries Be Sold Like Soap?” is constantly evolving. At the core is our commitment to offering a workshop that is engaging, practical, entertaining, and of course, educational. Still, we are always updating it with analyses of new social marketing campaigns and new activities that really allow participants to come out of the workshop with the beginnings of a campaign. The folks at Amigos came out of the workshop with some great ideas including the “Take One for You and One for a Friend” school library campaign and the public library campaign “Steal Music for Free at Your Library.”

We got to meet some great folks from the area including Nancy Hill from UTEP and Betty Long from the New Mexico State Library. We hope to see these folks again and develop workshops aimed at their particular staff and needs. Only regret is that we had to leave so early. Mary to Chicago for another workshop and me back to Tucson for work and three-year old play.

Thanks to Eddy and Laura at Amigos for all the help behind the scenes. Presentation and travel went off without a hitch thanks to their support. And again thanks to our guru, Katya Andresen, for continued inspiration via her book and blog.

One last thing. If you doubt Mary’s presence and stardom, just click here:

The gal’s a rising star!!!

Social Marketing: It Could Happen to You


This past month Yvonne Mery and Mary Evangeliste were given the opportunity to present at the 2007 Arizona Library Association Conference in Mesa, AZ. Originally we had applied for just a 50 minute break-out session, but to our surprise and delight were later asked to present it as a three-hour workshop. The workshop, Value-based Marketing: Integrating our Promotional Strategies with Our Mission & Ethics, turned out to be a huge success.

In three hours our goal was to have everyone in attendance have the beginnings of a killer marketing idea centered around the concept of social marketing. Social marketing uses well-proven commercial marketing techniques to promote the public good. As far back as 1953, G.D. Wiebe posed the question “Can brotherhood be sold as soap?” Since then, many non-profits have proven, yes, it can!! We showed how they can and have with some in-depth analyses of several successful social marketing campaigns including Click It or Ticket, Truth, and Back to Sleep. There are many elements that make up a successful social marketing campaign but the most important ones we discussed were:

  • choose a very narrow target audience,
  • create an action for your audience,
  • offer a reward that is based on the audience’s values
  •  seek out partnerships.

We must give our thanks to Katya Andresen and her invaluable book Robin Hood Marketing for giving us so many strategies to work with.

We will be giving a recap of this presentation for the Pima County Public Library on December 7th. We will also be offering a similar presentation at the California Research and Academic Libraries annual conference in April. And of course, we are always available to come to your library and teach you how to a plan a simple yet effective marketing plan.