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Humanizing Outreach Services and Marketing

Every once in a while, I see a library outreach campaign that challenges the traditional boundaries of library service.  Here’s the brief summary of the reason I’m writing today:  In August 2012, Doug Campbell, University of North Texas Research and Instructional Services Librarian, moved into Kerr Hall, the largest residence hall, as Faculty-In-Residence.   Campbell provided reference services on site and took students out for coffee on Saturdays.  To read the details of the work, read Campbell’s reflection.

These services were supported by an amazing marketing campaign, complete with swag, yard signs, a video, and flyers.  Housing Marketing Coordinator Mark McLeod worked as Art Director for the project and provided feedback to student designer Eric Richter.

text is: "Doug goes where Google can't. Thousands of resources that Google won't find. Need library help? Ask Doug." with a cartoon image of a face profile with brown hair, glasses, and beard.text is: "need library help? ask Doug. It's okay to ask." with a cartoon image of a face profile with brown hair, glasses, and beard.

McLeod shared with us:

As far as the process goes, the idea was that Doug was the “face” of the library in the residence halls (dorms), and since he has (or at least had) a distinctive beard, we used a combination of his face, mostly the beard and glasses, as an icon along with text page text to convey the librarian idea.

The artwork was pencil sketched and scanned into Adobe Illustrator.

We probably spent more time concepting the idea than actually doing the artwork. There were a lot of sketches we did for ideas that didn’t really convey the meaning. The “Doug face” idea was fairly simplistic, which was a good thing since the message conveyed really fast.

I think that utilizing Doug’s distinctive beard as a prominent feature in this marketing campaign logo is a fun way to help students recognize the librarian who lives just around the corner!   Would you consider being the “face” of your library?

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Outreach Using Buttons

A recent article in College & Research Libraries News discusses outreach opportunities through button making with students as “low-cost, high-impact,” (Lotts & Maharjan, 2018) and I couldn’t agree more.  Students love buttons!

Today’s button submission is from Leanne Gallety of the Davis Family Library at Middlebury College.  Leanne says,

Working off a limited budget and inspired by ‘So Many Buttons,’ I created a set of buttons to give out to students at the reference desk and during instruction sessions. I wanted them to be fun and something students might actually want to put on their backpacks, so I tried to stay away from our traditional branding (for example, we often direct students to the URL of the library website) and brainstormed for some puns that might work. We have a subscription to The Noun Project, so once I had a couple of ideas, I just picked some icons from their library and downloaded them as .svg. I mocked the buttons in illustrator to random dimensions and conveniently, Pure Buttons offers a free template for their buttons, so I could size up and preview at scale. With this template, I saw there was space to add some text along the rim of the button, so I decided to include the library name and a link to contact a librarian, in case anyone’s looking really close.

The text on the side of the button is a nice surprise to forward the library’s outreach mission.

side of button with text go/askus

Thanks to Leanne for sharing her tools, process, and product.  Remember that Leanne’s buttons are available on our Google Drive. All submitted work will be published on this site under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported license.

Happy Poetry Month

Libraries have the special opportunity to generate excitement about poetry every April.

My colleague Stephanie Hanni of Muhlenberg College in Allentown, Pennsylvania made a display in the style of blackout poetry.

library display with books, poster in the style of blackout poetry

She also created buttons!

 

She shares her thoughts:

In my head, I envisioned an image of an older poet with a gnarly beard and was elated when I found one! I used several overlays to create the look of a picture created from words and then I created the title of the poster to mimic the “blackout poetry” using Photoshop to construct the words. It was a lot of fun to create!
Pictures used in the poster were from creativecommons.org
Fonts used in this poster: Traveling Typewriter, creator: Carl Krull. 

I work right down the hall from this display and there was a lot of buzz from our community members about these buttons.

 

Thanks to Stephanie for her work on the display and for sharing it with Librarian Design Share!  We would love to see your National Poetry Month displays – submit your own work to show our community how you generated excitement about sonnets, limericks, or haiku.  All submitted work will be published on this site under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported license.

 

Learn the Terms

When Gail Schaub, Cara Cadena, Patricia Bravender, and Christopher Kierkus, surveyed 750 students at Grand Valley State University, one thing was clear: the language of information literacy can be complex and confusing. To combat misunderstandings, Gail began a collaboration with graphic arts professor Vinicius Lima where students would create visual representations and definitions of frequently used information literacy and library terms. The resulting campaign–Learn the Terms–resulted in some beautiful work by student artists, Stephen Dobrzynski, Jacob Luettke, Micah Martin, Carissa Storms. You can read more about this amazing collaboration and view all of the resulting artwork via the Grand Valley State University’s Open Teaching Tools.

Here’s Gail describing this collaborative project:

The “Learn the Terms” campaign was the result of a study I did with colleagues. We discovered in a survey of over 750 students on campus (a representative sampling), that 50% of our students don’t know the meanings of words they hear regularly in classrooms and on syllabi, terms like scholarly, peer-review, and even journal.

 We published our findings, but I knew that  we had to let others know, and offer some kind of solution. I collaborated with Vinicius Lima, a professor of graphic arts here, and his students created these designs that we’ve since produced and are sharing in the library and beyond. The designs are in our institutional repository for sharing:http://scholarworks.gvsu.edu/oer_teaching/2/

There’s a new group of students working on designs for a new list of eight terms for creation in the coming year. It’s been an incredible experience, being part of the design thinking process with these students, and I’m so enamored by their work, I want to show everyone I possibly can.

We can’t wait to see what new designs this year’s students develop!

Bookmark Your Library

Today’s design is a great example of sharing basic, essential library information with a clean, attractive design. Erin McCoy, Reference and Instruction Librarian at Massasoit Community College, created this great bookmark in Canva.

The goal of the bookmark is to communicate the basics: where we are, our hours, and how to contact us. We send this to distance/online students, and hand it out when students come in to register their library card.

Does your library have a similar bookmark or giveaway? If so, consider submitting to us here at Librarian Design Share. We’d love to feature your work!

News Literacy for All

I’m not really here for discussions about “fake news,” but I’m all for critical information literacy, including critical news literacy, and so are a group of librarians at Washtenaw Community College’s Bailey Library. Meghan Rose, Martha Stuit, and Amy Lee presented a poster recently at the Michigan Academic Library Association’s annual conference on their recent efforts to overhaul a News Literacy Libguide and use it as a springboard for instruction.

Continue reading “News Literacy for All”

When In Doubt, Make Buttons

If you’ve been following Librarian Design Share for a while, you’ll know all about my love of buttons and button makers. We’re spreading the library love with our 1″ American Button Machine at virtually every event on campus thanks to my crafty colleague and user engagement librarian, Amanda VerMeulen, and hope to add another larger machine to library in the near future.

Today’s submission is all about sharing the button love. Bill Rooney, Circulation Assistant at the University Libraries at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia has not one but two lovely button machines that are in heavy use throughout the year. Here’s Bill talking about his designs.

Continue reading “When In Doubt, Make Buttons”

So Many Buttons

Every once in a while something comes into your life and changes it forever. For my colleagues and I, that something was this 1″ button maker kit from American Button Making Machines. It’s been in action all year and there are no signs of our button-making obsession stopping anytime soon.

Continue reading “So Many Buttons”

Publicizing Social Media Accounts

Follow the Michigan Tech Archives on Social Media - bookmark side twoLike so many libraries and archives, the Michigan Technological University Archives was trying to publicize their Twitter account to their campus community. Their solution? A web advertisement on the library homepage and a great bookmark. Sawyer Newman, Communications and Research Assistant at Michigan Tech’s J. Robert Van Pelt and John & Ruanne Opie Library, created the bookmark to publicize the Archive’s new Twitter account and remind patrons of their other social media accounts.

Side one of the bookmark (above) is also a digital slide within the library and on the library’s homepage. Side two (left) includes all of the Archive’s social media accounts for the community to follow.

You can find the PDF version of this bookmark along with the original Photoshop and Illustrator files on the Librarian Design Share Google Drive.

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