Smart Investing @ Your Library

Two RUSA Smart Investing@Your Library® Projects Win Library Journals’ Movers and Shakers Awards

This year, Library Journal recognizedtwo of RUSA’s Smart investing@your library® grantees as 2012 Movers and Shakers. RUSA is proud of the strides made by Smart investing@your library® grantees that help patrons maneuver in challenging economic times.

“Recipe for Success” Attracts a New Library Demographic
Greenville County Library System’s Trinity Behrends was cited for her campaign to reach a “stubborn market segment,” women 18-64, mostly lower income and heads of household, who rarely use the library. The cleverly branded “Your Recipe for Success” used shoestring tactics, such as flyers at grocery stores, combined with ads on local cable on Food Network, Oxygen, and A&E to promote personal financial education resources available at the library.

The financial literacy program attracted more than 2,300 people to nineteen classes and twelve off-site outreach sessions. Strategic marketing and the right content delivered the goods. Using fresh insight into patron needs, she mounted a creative marketing campaign that brought an underserved population into the library and expanded the library’s reach into the community. Behrends’ insight into this hard-to-reach patron demographic told her that financial information had to be approachable. Aligning with a cooking theme, Your Recipe for Success, cozied up an otherwise difficult topic.

Library-invented $ave $teve Online Game Makes Financial Literacy Fun
Jim Blanton at Chesapeake Public Library (CPL) wanted to add some “thrill” to the topic of financial literacy. While brainstorming ways to innovate service delivery, Blanton hatched the idea of creating an online video game. $ave $teve was born. Developed in partnership with local Norfolk State University’s Creative Gaming and Simulation group, the game requires players to learn about money matters to help a character named $teve avert financial disaster.
$ave $teve can be played at child, teen, and adult levels. Links to unbiased financial information give players the knowledge to help $teve overcome financial pitfalls. Library Journal noted Blanton’s drive to innovate at CPL. “Most recently, Blanton’s ‘Scanversations’ (which enable patrons to interact with as many library staff as possible) introduced library users to QR codes. Staff posted book reviews online and then wore QR codes on their badges that directed patrons to the links.”

Share Trinity’s innovative prosperity education marketing and Jim’s interactive financial literacy program with your colleagues and social media audience, and read profiles of all of the innovative librarians in the 2012 Movers & Shakers.

Smart investing@your library® is a grant-funded program developed collaboratively by ALA, RUSA and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Investor Education Foundation. The program addresses the growing need for unbiased financial and investor education at the grassroots level. See how your library can take advantage of many of the free financial literacy tools.

RUSA @ALA Annual Conference: Innovative Financial Literacy Programs at Your Library from RUSA and PLA

RUSA members creating innovative programming should plan to attend two essential panels at ALA Annual. Smart investing@your library® grantees are offering a two-panel intensive on their success in developing and promoting innovative financial education opportunities within their libraries. Attendees of both programs will get a crash course in the two crucial elements that are part of any innovative programming: marketing and partnerships.

Add these programs to your Annual Conference schedule using the ALA Connect conference scheduler.

Smart investing@your library®: Everyone Counts!

Sponsored by the Public Library Association (PLA)

Saturday, June 23, 8:00-10:00 AM; Anaheim Convention Center, Room 207B

The role of librarians as trusted navigators leading patrons to the most useful information is increasingly valuable. Smart investing @ your library® is building the capacity of public libraries and librarians to provide reliable, unbiased financial education and resources to those who need help. Librarians are building collections, delivering programs to people of all ages and economic circumstances and creating a national network of replicable service models. Using data to tell the story, reaching out and working with community partners, and integrating market research into program design are successful strategies that are building the foundation for a leadership role in financial education.

Speakers will share how they developed and implemented their marketing plans using both social media and traditional methods that include Facebook, print, radio, and word-of-mouth.

As a result of attending the session, attendees will:

  • Learn marketing strategies that attract new audiences
  • Meet financial literacy/library innovators
  • Know how to replicate financial literacy programs

Speakers: Liz Doucett, Curtis Memorial Library (ME); Sandy Dixon, State Library of Iowa (IA); Aubrey Carroll, Florence County Library System (SC); Jamie Ritter, Maine State Library (ME); Dwight McInvaill, Georgetown Public Library (SC)

Moderator: Bobbie Rudnick, Naperville Public Library (IL)

Smart investing@your library®: Program Models That Work

Sponsored by RUSA’s Business Reference and Services Section (BRASS)

Saturday, June 23, 10:30 AM – 12:00 PM; Anaheim Convention Center, Room 201D

Smart investing @ your library® grantees are at the forefront of financial literacy programs that reach all economic and interest levels. Learn how they are creating models that use social media to capture attention, design games that appeal to kids, teens and adults, partner with social service agencies and market innovative school programs to provide unbiased financial education and resources. As more people need and want to learn how to manage their personal finances, these innovative libraries are leading the way.

Speakers: Paolo Melillo, Orange County Public Library (FL); Kurtis Kelly, Estes Valley Library (CO); Nelly Somerman, Schaumburg Township District Library (IL); Jim Blanton, Chesapeake Public Library (VA); Karla Heberlig, York County Public Library (PA)

Moderator: Susan Wolf Neilson, Wake County Libraries