Engaged as a marketing consultant for a public library, we developed and implemented a public relations and marketing communications plan to promote the library’s services for homebound adults. After interviewing homebound adults and library volunteers, we developed a direct-mail campaign and a media relations campaign and arranged public speaking engagements, plus cooperative publicity with area businesses and civic organizations. We also advised the library staff on development of a database of homebound readers and their reading preferences. We secured and supervised the services of a graphic design firm to design a promotional brochure and bookmark that served as key pieces of the direct-mail campaign.
Within six months, the campaign succeeded in increasing participation in the library’s homebound readers program more than fivefold. The campaign generated national and state honors for the library and the city in which it is located, recognizing the innovative programming on behalf of homebound adults and the excellence of the campaign materials. Among the honors were a national first-place L. Percy Award from the Library Public Relations Council and best-of-show honors from the state library association. The campaign drew inquiries from other libraries across the United States that expressed interest in using it as a model for their own homebound readers programs.
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