patron & staff centered design
Every library has a story to tell. Each community and each library is unique, and uncovering a compelling narrative that places the library in context to the area it serves has a transformative effect on its ability to effectively engage patrons. Whether embarking on a new marketing project, redesigning an out-of-date website and calendar, or offering digital solutions for online card registration and accessibility, libraries increase their potential for success when they can pattern their problem solving around a central story. Library Market specializes in helping libraries find their story and offers creative opportunities for turning this story into results.
For our projects, we use a 4-phase process that includes Discovery, Design, Development, and Delivery. Key benchmarks for each phase are discussed in detail before due dates, and these phases have multiple checkpoints that ensure the smoothest possible launch. This project management strategy allows us to provide our clients with not only excellent outcomes, but also a seamless experience in getting there.
The Discovery phase of our projects starts with a kickoff meeting where we work collaboratively with our clients to determine key factors about their project. During this stage, we also begin creating a design language for the overall look and feel of the project.central questions for discovery:
- What are the purpose and major goals of the project?
- Who is the target audience? What are their habits and how can we best reach them?
- What content needs to be delivered? What strategies can we undertake in providing it?
- What qualities best describe the library and how can we translate this into a usable design?
- Who at the library will administer the product, and what are their needs?
Library Market’s main goal in Discovery is to help our library clients uncover their story—the central narrative about who they are and the vital role they play in their community. We then take this story and craft a strategy that meets our client’s specific needs.
During the Design phase, our graphic designers work to translate the library’s story into a visually appealing framework for the project. Whether designing options for a new logo, mapping the architecture of a new website, or developing beautiful ways to integrate Library Market’s products into the library’s digital offerings, our designers prioritize the client’s needs and create work focused on engaging the client’s community. Our patron-first philosophy is a core part of the collaborative design process we practice with our clients, which includes a combination of insight from the library and our research and expertise.
Through Design, we focus on crafting solutions that transform patrons’ experiences with the library and encourage deeper engagement with the library and its resources. Library Market takes special care to ensure that our designs are fully responsive across all devices and will provide an equally intuitive and functional response for mobile, tablet, and desktop users. We approach Design as a collaborative process in which our clients’ feedback and the needs of their patrons are integral to tailoring elegant solutions for the challenges they face.
As the Development phase of any technical project begins, Library Market’s team of talented developers work to transform the approved design into a functional product. Rather than offering a limited product with narrow functionality, our focus is on creating flexible solutions that conform to the needs and policies of our library clients and help them relate their story to their patrons. As Development continues and the launch date approaches, key milestones include:client feedback
A staging site is established, allowing the library to monitor project progresscontent placement
Our team migrates, places, and styles client-provided content according to the approved design and information architecturequality assurance
We test styling, forms, accessibility, navigation, user accounts, and other product features across modern web browsers and on a range of devices
As one of the only marketing firms focused on the library industry, one of our goals is ensuring that all our products are intuitive and easy-to-use, allowing libraries to tell their story to new and existing audiences and continue growing their reach far beyond the project completion date. For our branding-specific projects, the Delivery phase is centered on releasing all collateral, including a brand book, and coaching the client on best practices for using their new marketing materials. For our technical projects, Delivery is a multi-step process that includes the following:training
Library staff members gain access to the administrative side of the staging site and receive live training and user manuals for all functions of the productcontinued testing
Our team continues QA and testing procedures and plans the technical side of launch with library’s systems administratorlaunch
Library Market coordinates with the client’s team to make sure everything goes smoothly and all functions and features are working as intended in the live environmenthosting & maintenance
After project completion, we provide both ongoing support and updates of server software, CMS, and plugins that keep the website current