Whitman County Library -  Your #! source for information, recreation, and discovery
Home > About Your Library > Marketing Plan

Marketing Plan

Whitman County Library



  • To be the community’s #1 resource for information, recreation, and discovery


  • To be the heart of the community; an information and social commons.
  • Focus on popular materials that are timely, in high-demand and come in a variety of formats.
  • Centers for lifelong learning, supporting programs and materials that enable our customers to learn and grow throughout their lifetimes.
  • Access point to information and community referral.

 Target or Niche markets:

Preschool children:       Ages 0-3 not in organized care
            Ages 0-3 in daycare, preschool, organized settings
            Ages 3-6 in daycare, preschool, organized settings

K-12 children:              Grades K-6 in school setting
            Ages 6-12 in home-school setting
            Grades 6-8 in school setting
            Ages 12-14 in home-school setting
            Latchkey children and after-school unsupervised
            Grades 9-12 in school setting
            Ages 15-18 in home-school setting

Parents:                        New parents
                                    Preschool parents
            Grade school parents
            Middle school parents
            High school parents
            Home school parents

Adults 18-70:              College students
            Working adults
            Non-working adults

Seniors 70+:                 Mobile, self-sufficient
            Special needs, assisted living, nursing home settings

Other considerations:    Library users
            Non-library users
                                    Convenience shoppers/non-traditional users
                                    Homebound or rurally isolated resident
                                    Target audience is widely spread, in 13 communities and rurally
                                    Local business people


Programs and Services:

  • Library service 24/7 via the website, 13 conveniently located branches, toll-free phone, 7 days per week in Colfax (Main) Branch
  • Library materials in many formats including books, movies, audio books, compact discs, large-print, etc.
  • Internet and computer access in all 13 locations. Wireless access and a Gates computer lab in Colfax.
  • Friendly staff offering highest quality customer service
  • Items available by request, direct mailing if desired
  • Special summer programs for all ages
  • In-library children’s programs, including babies, toddlers, school age, after school, and online
  • Weekly service and occasional programming in Malden
  • Outreach children’s programs to preschools, child care facilities and schools
  • Family programs
  • Adult programs including computer programming
  • Service to nursing homes, assisted living and retirement communities
  • Parent resource center coordinator, materials, and programming
  • Services and events for parents such as new baby packets, classes, Family Fair
  • Website products and services such as on-line catalog and requesting, direct mailing, online databases, 24-hour librarian
  • Cooperative projects or programs participating with schools, groups or agencies


Marketing and promotional strategies and activities:

  1. WCL Marketing Coordinator oversees system-wide marketing plan. Submits monthly columns to newspapers, assist staff with all library promotions and news releases, posters, fliers, etc. Besides local outlets, looks for opportunities to market the library at a statewide, regional and national levels. Seeks funding or opportunity for paid advertising whenever possible through the Library Friends, Foundation, grants and cooperative efforts. Responsible for staff training in marketing and promotion.
  2. A newsletter will be mailed to every household in the WCL district highlighting programs, services, staff, Friends and Foundation. (2 times per year)
  3. At every opportunity, utilize the website as a marketing tool.
  4. Each year, the library director will visit each of our 13 branch communities and Malden to attend city council meetings, community club presentations, visit with business leaders or other local efforts. At that time publicity will center on the visit, using the opportunity to promote library programs and services.
  5. The Library Board of Trustees will hold its monthly meeting outside of the Main Branch (Colfax) a minimum of 4 times per year, with publicity accompanying the meeting location and local officials invited.
  6. Library staff will visit each school district with the following programming for secondary grades with Teen Summer Reading promotion, online research and library resources, and Bridges vocational training. For primary grades online research, Book Bear book-talks, TV-Free Challenge, Library card sign up and summer reading promotion.
  7. Systemwide and local promotion of Summer Reading promotion, programming and incentives to all ages, baby through teen.
  8. Regularly train staff, Board members, and Friends of the Library on successful promotion and marketing through in-house and outside training opportunities.
  9. Library Staff are required to sign photo waivers and agree to use their name and image in an effort to promote the library. All staff members are encouraged to take and submit many photos for this purpose.
  10. Branch managers required to promote their programs, services and locations in at least one press release per month contacting a variety of free sources including newspapers, newsletters, water bills, etc.
  11. Whenever possible, WCL purchases advertising in each town’s community calendar to list library phone numbers and other pertinent contact information.
  12. Department heads encouraged to promote their programs and services via press releases, posters, fliers, invitations, and other means
  13. All staff and locations encouraged (and paid) to participate and help with community events, groups, Fairs, etc.
  14. Encourage programs and speaking engagements that outline library products and services. These include book-talks, library presentations, and website and research programs to the community.
  15. Collaborate with area schools for programs targeting teachers and students.
  16. Compile lists of donors and circulate these wherever possible as related to the library, the Friends and the Foundation.
  17. Compile a list of real library success stories and valuable statistics to be used liberally for marketing, publications, interviews, etc.
  18. Assist with and utilize the Friends of WCL and WCL Foundation in all promotional opportunities.
  19. Reader boards, Posters on public bulletin boards and take home fliers will be used for library promotion.
  20. Send thank you notes whenever any item, service or money is donated in all WCL locations.
  21. Actively participate in events at a state and national themes, marketing campaigns, and events. Relate information back to the local community through news releases, etc.
  22. Advocate with politicians at all levels for the benefit of the library and our customers. Frequently invite politicians and dignitaries to the library to educate them about WCL. Utilize these events as promotional opportunities.
  23. Always stress the library’s hardworking and frugal operation. Focus upon the ongoing need for donations and financial support of programs and services
  24. Regularly survey target audiences as a tool for assessing needs and customer satisfaction while educating the public about our programs and services.
  25. Whenever possible, outreach efforts will take place in the Library van, with the logo serving as advertising.
  26. Whenever possible, Whitman County Library’s mascot, The Book Bear will be a part of promotional events, parades, school visits, etc.
  27. Coddle our press and those who promote our events. Whenever possible express appreciation toward the importance of their library coverage and thank them regularly for the fine community service they perform.


Specific Marketing Goals:


  1. Every student in the Whitman County Library District will possess a library card and use it regularly.
  1. Attendance at library programs will rise each year.
  1. Donations to the Whitman County Library, Friends of Whitman County Library, and WCL Foundation will increase each year.
  1. WCL will increase library support and awareness for our library at all levels through our marketing strategies. Results will be measured through positive election results, contributions to the Library, Friends, Foundation, number of library cards issued and used, and library use statistics.
  1. Whether a library user or not, every citizen within the Whitman County Rural Library District will love WCL, they will understand the services we provide and they will support the library financially.



If you have any questions, please contact:

Kristie Kirkpatrick, Director, email
Whitman County Library
102 S Main Street
Colfax, Washington 99111

509 397-4366 or toll-free 1-877-733-3375