Yesterday I attended my first CILIP West Midlands branch committee meeting at Birmingham Central Library (where I must investigate sometime, can’t believe I’ve never been in before!). I’m the new Marketing Officer for the branch which I’m really excited about.

Marketing in the library and information sector is becoming increasingly more important at the moment, particularly with budget cuts, and I know from my own experience that many in CILIP (Chartered Institute for Library and Information Professionals) are unaware of some of the benefits available to them as members. There is also a large number of information professionals who are not currently CILIP members, and although some of these people I know have perfectly valid reasons which I respect, I’m sure there are others who just aren’t a member through lack of awareness (either of CILIP itself or of the benefits of being a member).

At both a national level and a local level, I’m finding out more and more about how you can get involved in the profession and benefit from CILIP activities, even if it’s just an informal chat with like-minded people over a pint (or an Archer’s and lemonade in my case!).

I’ve taken over responsibility for the marketing from Katharine Widdows (now newsletter editor), and it’s a tough act to follow – her and David Viner (current chair), along with the rest of the committee, have been developing the use of social media in a big way over the last year or so. This has certainly contributed to an increase in my own understanding of what the branch does, and has inspired me to volunteer my time to join in helping to spread the word! We discussed some marketing ideas at the meeting; it underpins so much of the work of the branch (no point doing all this work and organising events if no one knows about them or what we do!).

I’m going to work on a strategic marketing plan for 2010, building on the work Katharine did as Marketing Officer last year. I’m really looking forward to this new challenge and can’t wait to get going with some marketing activities. 🙂

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  • This is very interesting and mirrors the same challenges that I am facing in my new post as Publicity Officer for CILIP in Kent. Interestingly I have just blogged about the same thing! I also find it frustrating that many librarians do not see CILIP as essential to their role (for whatever valid reasons) and thus have left, or haven’t joined. Anything we can do to break down this mystique would be good and I certainly look forward to using some of the social networking sites to help with this. It would be good to share ideas with you.

    Good luck in your new role!