Tips & Tools

Minute to Market It #1 – Email Sig Files

The first in a series of short and sweet ideas that you can implement right now.

M2MI #1 – The mini billboard, aka, your email signature file.  Think about how many emails you send in a given day – if your email sig file only shows your name, website, and phone number, you are missing a super easy opportunity to tell someone something about your library. 

What to add to that sig file?  here are a few ideas:

  • Find us on Facebook – link to FB page
  • Follow us on Twitter – link to Twitter stream
  • Check out our blog – link to blog

These three might all be filed under “obvious,” but it is also important to note that you want to provide actual link to your social media properties and not just the handle.  Whenever possible, make it easy for the recipient to go right where you want them to.

Here are a few that require a little more attention, in the form of more frequent updates:

  • “This week, I’m reading xxxxxxx.”  – This one is pretty standard, but why not take it a step further and try “This week, I’m reading xxxxxxxxx.  What are you reading?”
  • When an author is scheduled to appear at the library, the adult programs director at my library does a variation on the above, with “I’m currently reading xxxxx by Joe Blow.  Blow will appear at the library on 2/24.  Read more here…” and links to the event in our online calendar.
  • We all know that promoting databases can be tough, why not advertise them here?  “Always wanted to learn Mandarin? Italian? French?  Check out Mango Langauges, available here…”

And don’t keep this a secret!  Encourage all library staff to add something to their sig file.  Make it easy for them (and don’t assume they know how) by posting directions – or maybe a quick screencast – on the staff intranet.  Offer to stop by their desk and walk then through it.

Will doing this double your Facebook following?  Will it pack the house for the next program?  Will database traffic shoot up as a result?  Not likely.  But that’s not the point!

If you are tasked with marketing your library, take every opportunity, no matter how big or small, to get your message out there – especially when it’s fast, free, and easy.  If you can get your staff to do this as well, you’ll start to build an institutional mindset that is tuned to marketing and an institutional culture that values marketing.

So, what’s in your sig file?

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