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Marketing, Social Media and Personal Branding: Why They Matter

By Lynda Larsen, Membership Director

According to a recent study by ABI research, by the end of 2013, the number of active smartphones around the world will total around 1.4 billion.1

“So what does this even mean? First of all, it’s a clear indication that more and more people are continuing to rely on their phones as a primary means of all types of communication.”2 Of course, mobile devices aren’t limited to smartphones, but is this a communication trend?

Law librarians already know mobile application development is important for corporate owners of LexisNexis, Westlaw, as well as for organizations such as the American Bar Association. Is there a clue here: shouldn’t you be knowledgeable about mobile applications and how they work? Have you checked out law school web pages lately to see a full listing of the amazing array of legal apps now available?

For information professionals in public libraries, the story is not much different. How many times does a day does a library user inquire about setting up an email or Facebook account?

In today’s on-the-move, multi-tasking, 24/7 world, branding is more important than ever. You want to get noticed! Recruiters and marketers in large corporations are now using social media as an important element in their overall marketing and communication strategies. Increasingly, social media is utilized to provide enhanced customer service by big companies like IBM, Oracle and FedEx.3

Stephen Baker, in a recent New York Times Opinion piece writes, “Social networks, like them or not, are fast laying out a new grid of personal connections. Even if this matrix of humanity sputters in advertising and marketing, it’s bound to spawn new industries in consulting, education, collaborative design, market research, media and loads of products and services yet to be imagined.”4

If more attention is focused on branding goods and services, doesn’t that apply to people too? Think Martha Stewart, J. Lo and Tiger Woods. While information professionals may not become quite so famous, we do need to know more about social media and personal branding.

That’s why the SLA Georgia Chapter is proud to present 2012 SLA Fellow and marketing consultant Chris Olson on Saturday, March 16th, at Clough Commons on the Georgia Tech campus. In a three-hour continuing education workshop, Chris will review components of personal brands, social media and other forms of communication. Participants will be able to discuss how these principles can be applied to their libraries and information centers. So, here’s your chance to apply what you learn and jump start or advance your career!

Program details, including an online registration form, can be found here:


3 Social Media Today, Webinar, “Global Customer Experience:  Getting It Right,” February 7, 2013.
4 Baker, Stephen. “Can Social Media Sell Soap?”  New York Times Opinion, January 5, 2013.

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