The market place: How retail therapy can boost collection performance [slides]

ALIA Library

Pascoe, Matt

Asia-Pacific Library and Information Conference 2018, 30 July - 2 August 2018 Gold Coast: Roar Leap Dare
This conference presentation (PowerPoint slides) accompanied a session on a project which aimed to better connect the community with library collections through customer-focussed service design.
Ipswich Libraries have a new curated content and presentation space featuring thousands of books where the average title circulates at over 400% the usual rate for the rest of the library collection. Through the “Market Place” project the service is leveraging the existing quality of their current collection offering along with a new responsive and data-driven approach to collection development, and the highly informed (and deeply passionate) subject-matter-expertise of library staff to deliver great value to the community. The project has made the service more attractive and successful with sharp increases in turnover, membership and visitors as the Library continues to use the Market Place to promote the entire service with awesome customer experience as first priority.
This presentation shows how the Market Place makes resource discovery simpler and more intuitive, makes going to the library a more beautiful, fulfilling experience and effectively connects more of the community with more of the collection. This discussion will explain how the service used innovative library design ideas and tools to create a new, highly successful space. It will also cover how standard library presentation standards were contrasted and subverted in the service design plan and how a slew of innovative physical and digital support strategies were designed, developed, implemented and iterated in order to maintain effective support for the space.
With turnover increases in various genres averaging from 200%-700% the presentation will also cover some of the substantial issues the project’s success caused and the tactics and strategies that were developed to effectively deal with these problems. The data that has defined success for the project will also be discussed as will the effective costs of running the Market Place so that libraries considering similar spaces might have an informed opinion of some of the operational realities that may be incurred. The presentation will show how to effectively and significantly lower the entry-barrier regarding successful engagement with your library. The Market Place shows that engagement no longer has to be set by precise discovery requirements e.g. do you have this book, but by more general and universal experience expectation e.g. do you have a good book; will you give me something I can enjoy; can the library make my life better? 


Deakin, ACT: Australian Library and Information Association
Ipswich Libraries