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“Let’s hear it for the boy”


No I am not talking about the song from Footloose sound track but our very own Jonathan Silberman who was recently interviewed in the May/June edition of Print Magazine:America’s Graphic Design Magazine.

The article was written by CORY DOCTOROW who is an author and a blogger, most notably one the of the editors of Boing Boing, an award winning blog that started out as a zine.

The article titled Some Rights Reserved is all about the use of Creative Commons in the work of designers. Jonathan was interviewed because we licenced all of our marketing material under a creative commons license. This enables people to use our marketing plan and most importantly Jonathan’s designs as long as they give attribution to the creator. One of the best lines in the article is “as an author my biggest problem is not piracy it is obscurity”

This quote could also be said of libraries or as Oscar Wilde says “Imitation is the highest form of flattery” We should all be involved in this new emerging form of communication. It will enable us to learn and share with each other and truley create a “learning commons”

I want to give a shout out to Gwendolyn Reece, intellectual and librarian extraordinaire for introducing me to the idea of Creative Commons.

If you have interest in Creative Commons you should read Lawrence Lessig and Siva Vaidhyanthan

ACRL/MARL announces 2007 marketing award !


This is very exciting, so start collecting all of your marketing material and documenting it along the way! REMEMBER to take pictures of events, keep pdf, jiff, and jpegs of everything you make!

The deadline for submissions Monday December 4th, 2006!

This was just announced and I am sure Jonathan and I will be writing more about it in the next few months so stay tuned…if you would like to see all the criteria for award please see the ACRL site… and if you want to see how happy you will be when you win the award see our picture from 2005 at ACRL Award site…

PS: Most importantly, on the ACRL site for the 2005 Best Practices in Marketing Academic and Research Libraries @your library Award, you will find American University’s communication plan and our video that rocked Minneapolis and our entire package that we submitted. All of this content is licensed under Creative Commons, this means that anyone can use our materials as long as they give attribution to our team. This enables us to build on each others work, instead of constantly reinventing the wheel and it contributes to scholarly communication.

What is happening at ALA in New Orleans ?

I am just starting to put my iternary together for ALA and this came across my computer today and seems interesting.

“PR Forum to focus on word-of-mouth-marketing.” American Library Association. 2006. m (Accessed 27 Apr, 2006)

here is the press release:

Marketing is Everyone’s Job @ your library®:
PR Forum to focus on word-of-mouth-marketing

(CHICAGO) “Word-of-mouth marketing” is the latest buzz word when it comes to promoting your library, but what does it really mean? Plan to attend the annual PR FORUM during the ALA Annual Conference in New Orleans, and you will learn what it is, why it works and how you can use it to engage every staff member, trustee, Friend, faculty member and student in spreading your library’s message.

The PR FORUM will take place Sunday, June 25, 2006, from 8 to 10 a.m. in Morial Convention Center, Room 352.

The program is geared toward library public relations and marketing professionals but is open to any ALA member wishing to attend. This can’t-miss event will feature an expert panel offering tips and strategies for making the most out of your word-of-mouth efforts. It also will include an update on The Campaign for America’s Libraries and recognition of the Maricopa County (Ariz.) Library District, winner of the 2006 Scholastic Library Publishing National Library Week Grant.

The “word-of-mouth marketing” panelists include:

  • Peggy Barber and Linda Wallace, Principals, Library Communications Strategies, Inc.
  • Camila Alire, Dean, University Libraries, University of New Mexico; ACRL President
  • Donna Dziedzic, Executive Director, Naperville (Ill.) Public Library

The PR FORUM will be moderated by Kathleen Imhoff, Executive Director, Lexington (Ky.) Public Library and chair of the PR Assembly, which sponsors the PR FORUM. The PR Assembly is a subcommittee of the ALA Public Awareness Committee.

new orleans1.jpg

What is everyone else doing at ALA?

What I learned in Yoga last night

My yoga teacher talked last night about the importance of feeling OK with the fact that you can often be wrong or not know how to do something.

I think this is a very integral thing to realize and embrace if you are embarking on any kind of public relation campaign or marketing campaign for your organization.

Let me explain:

  1. With a marketing campaign you often have to take a leap into the unknown, you have to try things that aren’t comfortable.
  2. You have to be ready when you create a campaign to be wrong – just dead wrong sometimes.
  3. Sometimes you will create a funny poster that just bombs or conversely you will create a wild poster that really hits the mark and becomes wildly popular. Last year we made this poster that students ripped off the wall and hung in their dorm room.

How can you comfortably move into taking chances?

  1. make a one year plan; assess it after one year; and be flexible.
  2. show your posters and other design material to someone outside your organization; ask them to critique it; sit quietly while they do it and actively listen.
  3. browse magazines and journals open your mind to images that may not naturally come to you…
  4. walk around your community and look at what people are wearing , saying and looking at ….

BUT MOST of all be able to be wrong – BE FEARLESS

I think it was David Byrne, of the Talking Heads who said
“By being lost , you can be found” or something like that….икони

I get by with a little help from my friends…or don’t underestimate the rich resources that surround you

When you begin to think about creating a marketing plan for your organization the best thing to do is start talking it up: at beginning of meetings, at the lunch room or any other place or time where people informally gather.

Make sure you get the world out that you are looking for amazing and talented people to work on your team. I have no doubt that you will find most of these resource right within your organization.

If you are working at a university or college you probably have people right in your building who have marketing experience or who are taking classes in this area, people who are great at event planning, people who already have great connections to important people on campus and people who have graphic experience.

The most important thing to do is make sure that these people know that you need them and that you will respect their talents.

Marketing extends everywhere


One of the things that people forget when developing your marketing plan is that marketing extends to everything that comes out of your organization. Posters, brochures, even temporary signs all get the magic marketing treatment.

Every chance that you are presented, you need to reinforce your brand. Let’s not kid ourselves, it is time to begin thinking of your institution as a brand whether or not you like the idea of it.

Reinforcing your brand is the most fundamentally important aspects of marketing, you have to tie your brand to your institution.

Here are two logos for American University Library, one is used for formal publications and the other is used for the day-to-day materials from the library.

AUL_stamp.jpg header small.png

A logo is the easiest way to create a brand for the library in the mind of the viewers. Keep this in mind, most libraries usually forgo a library logo for their university’s logo.