Thursday, December 21, 2006

Communicating the Libraries' Mission through the Tagline: A destination for research, learning, and friends

Three years ago, Dr. Arthur W. Hafner, Dean of Ball State University Libraries, revealed the Ball State University Libraries’ strategic communications plan to position the Libraries in the minds of its constituents as the place for research, learning, and classroom support.

Not long afterwards, the Libraries’ mission statement was simplified to A destination for research, learning, and friends, a clear declaration supporting the University’s mission of nationally recognized teaching, scholarship, and public service.

The statement proved so strong and memorable in the minds of students and faculty that it became the University Libraries’ tagline, identifying the Libraries’ brand message and making clear our value proposition.

According to Adler Consulting Company, an Internet marketing solutions firm, organizations best influence their brand by clearly communicating what they do.

Our librarians and paraprofessional personnel continue to build the University Libraries’ brand by conducting surveys, SWOT analyses of units within the Libraries, soliciting suggestions from customers, carefully analyzing LibQual+ survey results, seeking input from the Student Government Association, talking informally with students and faculty, and using various unobtrusive research methods.

Some of the strategies that the University Libraries have implemented or strengthened to support the brand include:

· Librarians and paraprofessional personnel to help students with research projects and assignments
· Comfortable, friendly atmosphere for students, faculty, staff
· Access to great print and digital collections
· Excellent technology and access to all of the common software used on campus
· Spaces for collaborative and individual learning, research, and study

By managing the University Libraries’ brand, we are able to increase the Libraries’ role in the academic life of the campus, making the University Libraries second only to the classroom for discovery and learning.

For more information, contact Susan G. Akers, Ball State University Libraries’ Marketing Communications Manager,, (765) 285-5031.


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