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National Library Week 2013 - Get Carded

Wichita Public Library, KS
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Innovation Summary

The theme for National Library Week 2013 is, “Communities Matter,” and the Wichita Public Library has truly taken this theme to heart. We have created partnerships with some of our local businesses who will be offering discounts to customers showing their library card. We are calling our program “Get Carded”.

Innovation Leader: Savannah Ball, Library Assistant IV, sball@wichita.gov

Problem Statement

Wichita Public Library has recognized the opportunity that National Library Week presented us to bring in new customers and reconnect with customers who have not been in for a while or who may have lost their card. We are offering free replacement cards to inactive users, those who have an account but have lost their card and no longer use our services, by waiving the $2 fee we normally charge for a replacement card during the week. Not having a library card, or having to pay for a replacement, are two hurdles that seem to keep citizens from actively using our library. Providing replacement cards for no charge is one way we are hoping to remove this hurdle. We have created many activities we hope will motivate citizens to come in and create an account. Our “Get Carded” initiative has also given us the opportunity to strengthen our ties with local business owners. Finally, it has provided us numerous chances to strengthen our brand awareness.

Innovation

Wichita Public Library saw a great opportunity in this year’s National Library Week theme. “Communities matter” was a sentiment that we, as an organization, truly believe in. Showcasing of local businesses Throughout the week we plan on highlighting five local businesses on our social media pages, along with our website, and in exchange these locally-owned businesses will be offering discounts to customers who show their Wichita library card. Each business owner has shared with us ways they may use the library to their advantage. For example, one business may use our art prints during classes to show different painting techniques. Another may have used our cookbooks to bring new flavors to their menu. With this single activity our library card has also become a valuable resource not only in our buildings and on the web, but in the community as well. This activity also has the potential to engage and bring in new users. Advertisement through local media has made non-users aware of the potential discounts and specials they may receive if they sign up for a library card. This gives them additional motivation to register for an account, beyond the services we offer. Drawings Another way we are strengthening our library’s brand identity is through the use of contests and drawings. Customers who take photos in front of our National Library Week backdrop will be entered into drawings for gift certificates to local businesses. These backdrops include our logo and the phrase, “I got carded at the Wichita Public Library”. Customers can also take a photo of themselves with their card and upload it to our social media sites.

Progress

We hope to achieve many things through this program. Increase in Active Cards One of our goals is to increase our number of active and new library cardholders by 500. We also believe that this program will increase the amount of ownership that customers feel they have in our library, especially as they get a chance to share their stories, their pictures, and personalize their card. Community Stakeholders Our program is going to increase the number of community stakeholders as we share how local business owners have used our libraries to become more successful, or to help their customers. As these businesses see how many customers are visiting because of the program, their ties to us will become greater. Community Awareness Increase in our community reach will occur through our use of social media. Every share, like and tweet will result in an entry into our drawing, so more and more people are going to see postings about our program. Our posts will also increase the community’s awareness of the resources that we offer.