Ohio Library Council

Information access has shifted.
Recent studies report observations and recommendations about information use by younger generations. The highest criteria on the their list of needs when seeking information was ease of use. They also expect customization and are technology veterans who use new communications. Trends in changing services to meet these needs include creating online interactive group spaces, support for remote usage, wireless networks, portals that combine catalogs, e-journals, reference materials, etc. Users would appreciate integrating library information and more multimedia resources into popular search engines and incorporating “open” web resources into catalogs. Gaming as a mechanism for promoting libraries and teaching information literacy is another trend, representing services and instruction visually and in multimedia modes.
In the library, look at exploring more services for mobile devices such as cell phones, offering wireless networks, or providing individual and group learning spaces equipped with computing resources and comfortable spaces for informal gatherings.
The market for library services will evolve because technology impacts lifestyles and work locations, and because the percentages by age group in the world population is changing. Library operations will change as technology changes, and so will marketing methods. Consider new methods of marketing to reach all users: blogs, wikis, gaming, RSS feeds, photo sharing, social bookmarking, etc.
Changes in technology and demographics affect what we market, how we market, and to whom we market. The process of planning, however, will still require careful assessment of who we are, who our customers are, what they need, and how we can provide it.

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