55th ILA National Conference on Library & Information Science - Conference Proceedings – January 21-24, 2010

Marketing of Library Services
Sudha Kaushik1, Somvir2 Librarian, P.D.M. College of Engineering, Bahadurgarh E mail: sudhakaushik2@yahoo.co.in, sudhakaushik2@gmail.com
2 1

Assistant Librarian, P.D.M. College of Engineering, Bahadurgarh E mail: somvirrathee@yahoo.co.in, somvirrathee9@gmail.com

ABSTRACT- Marketing is not new to library but in the recent years marketing of library services has been gaining importance in libraries. It is whole business seen from the customer’s point of view for its final result. The first requirement for successful marketing of information services is a clear appreciation for what marketing is and what it can do. This paper defines the concept of marketing, the imperative need for library services and methods used for the library services. It outlines the principles for marketing of library products and marketing services. This article indicates the development of marketing of library services at national and international levels. The article also includes study of new IT based technologies for library services marketing viz., telecommunication, broadcasting and database technology, as the key elements in marketing process.

INTRODUCTION According to Philip Kotlar, “Marketing is the analysis, planning, implementation and control carefully formulated programs designed to bring about voluntary exchanges of values with target markets for the purpose of achieving organizational objectives. It relies heavily on designing the organization’s offering in the terms of target markets need and desires, and on using effective pricing, communication, and distribution to inform, motivate, and service the markets”. The library services have been totally changed by the impact of new technologies and new methods. Marketing of library services is one to one interaction and exchange of value in which the users and library professionals both gain something and it is the process of selling, advertising, promoting and distributing the services to satisfy the consumer’s requirements profitable manner. It can help in developing the aim of library and determining the best way of provides services to customers. Marketing comprises a set of tools called the marketing mix, product design, pricing, communication and distribution. Sudha Kaushik & Somvir

IT BASED TECHNOLOGIES IN MARKETING OF LIBRARY SERVICES: For marketing of library services, IT based products or services are very much influential to users in the long run. With experience and proper IT training, staff becomes the most knowledgeable and valuable asset of the library. The services of libraries are moving into the network based environment and website have become an important service of the library services. These services exist in many forms such as E-mails, web forms, Ebooks, CDs, videos, journals, journal articles, data bases, films, audio digital products, online publishing. Public domain and commercial online databases are available through Internet, other propriety databases and through various private network service providers. The advent of new technologies in telecommunication and broadcasting are making it possible to fulfill varied needs of users. Librarians should promote the use of IT as an integral part of library services. Marketing concepts and technologies can contribute to a dynamic approach to total


55th ILA National Conference on Library & Information Science - Conference Proceedings – January 21-24, 2010

strategy development, effective management.




Participants - All human actors who play a
part in reference and information services delivery, namely the library's personnel.

7P's of Marketing Mix in marketing of library services: A short term tool that
helps with planning is the marketing mix. Product, price, place promotion, participants, physical evidence and process are seven Ps of marketing mix that can be applied in marketing of library services.

Physical Evidence - The environment in
which the reference and information services are delivered that facilitates the performance and communication of the service.

Process - The procedures, mechanisms and
flow of activities by which the reference and information services are acquired. PROFESSIONAL SKILLS FOR MARKETING OF LIBRARY SERVICES: Excellent marketing skills and techniques are essential for a library and information center’s success. For marketing, development and implementation of information literacy skills, digital literacy skills, media literature skills, critical thinking and problem solving skills and self-direction skills are needed. Professionals should know how to communicate well with users and be able to create a welcoming IT environment and build confidence in the users. Professionals should have perception of user’s needs and should be able to obtain feedback from users. INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT OF MARKETING OF LIBRARY SERVICES: Increasing the interest of international and national associations such as the US- based special library associations has been giving attention to coverage on marketing in its programmes. It provides training and time-totime publishes bibliographies on marketing. London based ASLIB published the first authentic text on Marketing of library and information services (Cronin, 1981). It also organizes short term-courses for library professionals and publishes papers. An annual conference held at Bostan launched “Campaign for the World's Libraries’ at the

Product - Products or services of the general
reference and information service department. This is, of course, the information, reference, and ancillary services that add value such as personal assistance, referral services, online database searches, document delivery, and interlibrary loan.

Price of Service - Pricing of use of the
library is usually that of the time and effort the user spends traveling to the library, as well as the time and effort spent searching for and examining materials and cost of a foregone alternative activity.

Place - Place of service, based upon
knowledge of the market of a library, is essential in order to identify users and their discrete information needs and wants. Also, this location element has effect upon how the library can best access their product offerings. To expand the service area, the library may have branches, bookmobiles, or electronic access, FAX, and telephone calls, etc.

Promotion - Promotion includes utilizing
persuasive information about general information services, and communicating this information to target market segments that are potential users. Five kinds of promotion include: publicity, public relations, personal representatives, advertising, and sales promotion.

Sudha Kaushik & Somvir


55th ILA National Conference on Library & Information Science - Conference Proceedings – January 21-24, 2010

international federation of Library association (IFLA). American Library Association has also published many useful texts on marketing. A bimonthly news letter on Marketing Library Services gives specific coverage on marketing of library services. Many of the American libraries, Library and information sciences journals have brought the special issues on Marketing of Library Services, such as Library Trend 43(3), Winter 1995, Journal of Library Administration 1983, Information outlook 6(11), 2002, Computers in Libraries 19(8),1999 and ASLIB information 21(9), 1993. These journals have circulations in other countries also. IFLA Marketing and Management Section in 1997, which comprises library professionals from all over the world, working actively in marketing and management in their libraries. IFLA is working for conceptualizing marketing in libraries, making efforts for developing guidelines to teach management and marketing, and other developments of interest to LIS professionals. It organizes annual conferences, training programmes, brings out publications, newsletter, and also has a discussion list for marketing of academic libraries. There are also various institutions/ agencies/ associations running short-term training programmes on different aspects of marketing.

Indian Scenario: In India, The Indian
Library and Information Science Abstract (ILSA) started abstracting in this field in 80s. Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad has developed a database on Marketing of library services which is very helpful for researchers. The national professional associations and organizations, like Indian Associations of special libraries and Information Centers (IASLIC), Indian Library Association (ILA) Society for Information Science (SIS), Medical Library Association of India (MLAI) and Management Library Sudha Kaushik & Somvir

Networks (MANLIBNET) are increasing their interest in the field for marketing of library services. IASLIC Organized the first national conference in 1988 (Kapoor & Chatergee, 1988) Society for Information Science (SIS), also selected the theme Information marketing for its conference in 1995(Kuldeep Chand, 1996). ). Many associations in this area also conduct training programmes and workshops. DESICOC Bulletin of Information Technology has brought out special issues on marketing of library and information services twice in 1998 and 2002. A workshop on marketing of information product and services was organized on 27 November to 01 December 1989 at CSIR, New Delhi. The professionals like Annals (New Delhi), SREL Journal of Information Management (Bangalore), IASLIC Bulletin (Kolkata), ILA Bulletin (New Delhi), Herald of Library Science (Lucknow) and others regularly publish articles on the area of marketing of library and information services. . The topic of Marketing of Information and Library Services has been included in the syllabi of many universities in the country. INSDOC has made progress in this direction. The first step in this regard was establishment of a full fledge division on marketing and customer services. The services marketed by INSDOC are Literature search, Desk Top Publishing (DTP), Citation Analysis of papers, Reprographic service, Translating service, Networking services and development of SIRNET etc. IMPERATIVE NEED OF MARKETING OF LIBRARY SERVICES: In the age of information Technology library offers many services for marketing but the availability of right information to the right people at the right time at right cost is becoming all the more critical. To understand the need for marketing of library services can be analyzed under the following perspectives


55th ILA National Conference on Library & Information Science - Conference Proceedings – January 21-24, 2010





Customer’s requirement: In response to the ever-changing society different types of Information are available in print and non-print material. Because of these continuous changes, the traditional services are not sufficient for the users and they require new services. Demand of new services: Due to the changing nature of the society and economy there is increase in demand for new kind of services, for which the marketing process is required. Effect of free economy: In free economy, customer is more important. They purchase only what they need from the vast available material. This is because current and timely information is the key to sound decision-making. Increasing cost of information: Due to the increasing rate of speed and cost of information, the marketing process is required. Information Explosion: There is an information explosion, which has resulted into more and more publications in micro subjects areas, which has created a demand for marketing of library services.

4. Complicate Task – Marketing of library services is a complicated task for librarian because of its wide range. 5. Fear- Librarians fear of commercial publicity and see marketing as manipulative, wastage of time and resources, and unprofessional for their profiles. 6. Old models – Sticking to old models bar the introduction of new ideas and implementation of new services some of such models are: • Many librarians work on the old model of existence by order. • Faculty should send their students to librarians for Support. • Students should use library databases to locate quality information for their papers. SUMMING UP Libraries have enormous potential to earn revenue by marketing of library services. The main aim of marketing is to make the users know and understand that the library is able to satisfy their needs and beyond. The library can be called an information market and the library user is a consumer of information. Marketing of library services is an essential step in the planning, designing, and use of services for optimal use of information. Library acquisition and organization must be based on the modern concept of marketing to its user’s satisfaction. Marketing of library services is the effective execution of all the activities involved in increasing satisfaction of users by providing maximum value to them. It is a total solution for library and information centers. My suggestion is that the librarian must develop a marketing plan and should include these services, i.e. user education programmes, packing of information, hyper linking relevant sites, meetings and seminar.

HURDLES IN MARKETING OF LIBRARY SERVICES:Most of the librarians do not know how to market the library services. The barriers in promoting library and information services are: 1. Myth – People believe that libraries do not need to be promoted because in general, the importance of libraries is not clear to them. 2. Lack of funds- Lack of funds is a reason of not spending money for improvement and marketing the library services. 3. Attitude and communication- Library professionals need to learn different styles to communicate with diverse users and create a positive attitude as most users have negative image towards the librarians.

Sudha Kaushik & Somvir


55th ILA National Conference on Library & Information Science - Conference Proceedings – January 21-24, 2010

REFERENCES: Aslib.Cornish, G.P. 1998. Universal availability of publications and its importance to human development, regeneration and growth. Library Management 19(8):480–85. Blunden-Ellis, J. 1992 Service marketing and the academic library : The Marketing of library and Information services 2, Blaise Cronin ed., London De Saez, Eileen E. Marketing Concepts for Libraries and Information Services. 2nd edition. London: Facet Publishing, 2002. 224pp. Ekoja, I.I. 1996. Alternative sources of funding in Nigerian University Libraries. Library Management 17(3):13–21. Gopalkrishnan, NK. 1990. Curriculum for marketing management for information professionals. Library Science, Vol.27, no.2: 129-35. Griffith, L. 1992. Political marketing of the rural li-brary. In: Marketing of Library and Information Services 2, Blaise Cronin ed., Aslib: London: 149. Gronroos, C. 1979. Applied theory for marketing industrial services. Industrial MarketingManagement 8(1): 45–50. Gummesson, E. 1979. The marketing of professional service; an organizational dilemma. European Journal of marketing13(5): 308–18. Johnson, D.T. 1995. Focus on the Library customer: revelation, revolution or redundancy.Library trends Trends 43(3): 318– 25. Rao, S.S., Introduction to marketing of information product and services, edited by Abhinandan K. Jain et Al. Tata Mcgraw Hill, Delhi 1999 Rowley, J. 1998. Promotion and Marketing communications in the information marketplace. 47(8): 383–387. Weingand, Darlene E. Marketing/Planning Library and Information Services. 2nd edition.

Englewood, CO: Libraries Unlimited, 1999. 187pp

Sudha Kaushik & Somvir