Tuesday, July 1, 2008

OCLC Report on From Awareness to Funding

American Libraries reports that the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation gave a $1.2M grant to OCLC to conduct research with advertising agency Leo Burnett, in order to learn how to market public libraries in communities with populations under 200,000 where elected officials are responsible for local library funding. The findings are in OCLC's report "From Awareness to Funding: A Study of Library Support in America." The report looks at the potential of a national marketing campaign to increase awareness of the value of public libraries and the need for support for libraries at local, state, and national levels.

From Awareness to Funding (key findings):
  • The library's most committed funding supporters are not the heaviest library users.

  • Perceptions of librarians are an important predictor of library funding support.

  • Voters who see the library as 'transformational' as opposed to 'informational' are more likely to increase taxes in its support.

  • Increasing support for libraries may not necessarily mean a trade-off with financial support for other public services.

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