“I have all the staff I need,” said no manager ever. Libraries are stretched thin and facing new demands. And with tight budgets, funding additional staff positions isn’t a reality for most libraries.  

While we can’t literally give you another staff member, LibraryAware can lighten your workload and improve your workflow, regardless of the size of your staff. I’ve seen it done over and over again with the libraries I work with here at NoveList. And I experienced it first-hand as a LibraryAware subscriber several years ago.  

Lighten the load on your marketing team 

When I headed up community relations and marketing for a large library system, we were fortunate to have a graphic designer on staff. He did a great job churning out endless storytime flyers, book display signs, and signage for grand openings, among many other things. Our branch staff kept him very, very busy, which meant constantly juggling what the branches needed with what our executive team and board needed. There weren’t enough hours in the day for all the requests from our branches. We had to start saying “later” and even sometimes “no” to their requests. We were drowning in work, but adding another designer wasn’t in the budget. And then the unimaginable happened. Our designer left for another job!  

I’m not a designer and I certainly didn’t have free time to create a flyer or sign that in the end would be only passable. Thankfully, my library had just renewed our NoveList subscriptions and added something new called LibraryAware. It included library-focused templates to promote storytime, genealogy classes, book clubs, and all the other programs and events our branches offered. It gave us ready-to-print book display signs, book flyers, bookmarks, and NextReads newsletters to help us promote our collection and get patrons excited about reading.  

Empowered staff  

The branches loved the idea that when they needed a flyer, they didn’t have to wait six to eight weeks for our designer to get to it. They just pulled up a template and added in their event details. If their program date changed, they could easily create an updated version on their own in minutes. As a marketer, I loved that what they created looked professional and included our branding exactly the way I wanted it.  

High-resolution images included 

When we hired our new designer, she used LibraryAware in addition to her other design programs. She created custom templates in LibraryAware for our branches to use for our community reading event, ensuring all locations had a consistent look. She uploaded photos of each branch into LibraryAware’s image selector so staff could access them on their own anytime. The stock photography account we couldn’t afford to get wasn’t needed anymore thanks to the millions of images LibraryAware provided, including book jackets (no more copying them from the internet at a low resolution and probably in violation of copyright). And that additional email service we were paying for? Cancelled, since LibraryAware included unlimited sends, unlimited subscribers, and templates designed specifically for libraries.  

Space to work on bigger initiatives 

Another bonus? Our designer could spend her time on our annual report, slides and handouts for our director’s budget presentation at city council, systemwide materials for summer reading, author visits, and our monthly newsletter. LibraryAware completely changed her workload and workflow, and several years later, that library system is still using it at all 21 locations, even with a full marketing team. And that designer? She’s working for NoveList now, creating templates and graphics for LibraryAware customers based on her experience working at a library (and mad design talent).  

No designer? No problem. 

For the small and mid-sized libraries that I work with at NoveList, LibraryAware serves as a go-to resource for professionally designed book display signs, social media images, graphics for their website, email service, and a book recommendation service for their patrons. The templates are already created with libraries in mind, so editing time is minimal. Everything they need is ready to go, as if their own marketing team created it. Staff can assist patrons instead of laboring over creating a flyer from scratch.  

Take a look at LaFourche Parish Public Library (LPPL)’s website and Facebook page. See those eye-catching graphics promoting their programs, services, and collection? Nearly all of them were made in LibraryAware.  

“We don’t have a graphic designer; it’s just me, and I don’t have any design experience. LibraryAware takes the guesswork out of creating something professional looking,” said public relations librarian at LPPL, Brooke Savoie. “I used to make things from scratch, but then I got more responsibilities, and I didn’t have time to do that anymore. LibraryAware saves us a lot of time and avoids us having to pay a graphic designer. It’s something I’d definitely recommend to every library.”  

Libraries with and without marketing departments can benefit from hiring a NoveList expert to help staff gain skills and confidence in promoting your library programs, services, and collection. To request a free consultation catered to your library’s specific needs, contact us.    

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Kathy Lussier is the Manager of Engagement and Services at NoveList. She is currently rereading, Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott.