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Fall in love

With library members declining due to the internet, e-books and lack of awareness of what is on offer at local libraries, we were tasked with turning this around…

Not one to shy away from a challenge, we set about finding reasons that would persuade people to re-engage with their library again. The main reason we uncovered from consumer research preventing people visiting libraries was that they think libraries are JUST for bookworms and borrowing books. Not so…

Hampshire County Council image

Libraries aren’t just full of books

As well as the obvious – borrowing books – libraries are also a great place to socialise and have a coffee, borrow music, movies and games and even go online and search the web. There are many good reasons to join your library again and therefore our creative positioning was all based around the creative positioning: ‘Fall in love with your library again’.

Using the ‘loved by all’ retro sweets, Love Hearts, we reminded lapsed members about the many reasons to re-engage with their library. An impressive 19.2% of lapsed customers mailed walked through their library door again in the six months following the campaign, outperforming the control group by an impressive 29%.

Having proven library users will respond positively to communications, we followed this with two broader outdoor campaigns to create awareness of the libraries e-resources.

The UK had 201 fewer libraries in 2011/12 than the previous year
  • Hampshire County Council image
  • Celebrating our history image

Celebrating our history

Following successful library campaigns, we were also approached to work on an exciting new Museums project. A unique programme of annual ‘Big Themes’ will see ambitious displays linking together stories, the people and historic collections of the County. 2014 marks the first of these big themes – entitled ‘1914’ – and will focus on the commemoration of the First World War. Hampshire County Council, Southampton and Winchester Councils are delivering a series of exhibitions that will focus on three different topics – all with a Hampshire twist.

For the Big Theme, we designed one overall creative approach that worked across the different themes and communications. Facebook apps were also developed to engage with people who had not really considered visiting a museum before. The first app, entitled ‘Time to Remember’ gave the opportunity for users to post a personal message using a First World War postcard. The second app, ‘Kitchener Yourself’ was more fun – choose a picture, resize in the famous Kitchener recruitment poster, change the text and share with friends, all designed to get people interested in history and ultimately museums.

So if you need to give people a memorable reason to come through your doors, we’ve been there, seen it, done it, read the book.

Hampshire played a critical role in the First World War as the major embarkation point for millions of soldiers heading off to mainland Europe to join the conflict
Driving footfall in libraries and museums |RLA