It’s the Experience that Matters – Notes from a ULC Webinar

I attended an Urban Libraries Council webinar on the customer experience today – it was good! Here are some of my notes from the session.

Speaker – Melanie Huggins, Richland County Public Library

Stuff I found interesting…

User Experience (UX) – interaction between technology and humans
Customer Experience (CxP) – all aspects of a customer’s interaction with an organization, its product and services

Think about the whole interaction – the before, during, and after – that’s the customer experience.

6 laws of customer experience:

1. Every interaction creates a personal reaction
– An experience designed for everyone satisfies no one. You need to optimize for a specific set of customers (ie., use personas)

2. People are instinctively self-centered
– don’t sell things – help customers buy them
– don’t show your corporate underpants

3. Customer familiarity breeds alignment
– think of your company as a large production crew making the stars (front-line employees) shine on stage (during customer interactions) – nice thought!

4. Unengaged employees don’t create engaged customers

5. Employees do what is measured, incented, and celebrated
– me – ok. “encented” is a silly word.
– don’t just expect staff to do the right things. Instead, clearly define good behaviors.
– watch for mixed messages

6. You can’t fake it!
– it has to be top priority to be successful
– advertise to reinforce, not create, positioning (ie., job ads)

Definition of brand: a customer’s gut feeling about a product, service, or organization.

Good stuff!

Facebook from a Patron’s Perspective

A day or two ago, we invited a couple of our patrons in for a focus group session on our website. The goal was to gather insights about our current website that can be incorporated into our redesign … but in the process, one patron in particular shared some eye-opening insights into how she uses Facebook.

This patron shared that she sits in front of a computer for 8 hours a day at work, and starts her morning out by opening up Google Reader, email, and Facebook as separate tabs on her web browser, and keeps them open all day long (while she’s working).

What does she do in Facebook? A lot. She follows co-workers, friends, and family there. The keeps up with the news and other organizations she’s interested in … through her Facebook news feed.

And the library? She primarily keeps up-to-date with the library through Facebook, too. Yes – through status updates and links within those status updates to interesting things.

OK. She was just one person who works in front of a computer all day. But I’m guessing she’s not alone – in the last three months, my library’s Facebook Page has added almost 900 fans.


  • We need to not treat our Facebook Page as an afterthought. Some of our more savvy, active patrons are using Facebook as a primary source for library news.
  • We need to develop strategy and goals around our Facebook Pages (and any other social media tool our library incorporates).
  • We need to be actively sharing and conversing. Not just broadcasting press releases, but actually holding conversations with our patrons (just like we do in our physical spaces)

Are you seeing a similar thing with your customers? Your friends? How are you talking with patrons using a Facebook Page?

Photo by Paul Walsh

Building the Digital Branch: An ALA TechSource Workshop with David Lee King

I’m teaching an ALA TechSource Workshop about building digital branches on August 3rd – and I hope you attend!

Here’s the blurb about the workshop:

“Every library needs a presence on the Web. Whether you work at a large academic library or a public library in a small town, you need to be able to provide service and content to your patrons beyond the walls of your building. In this workshop, David Lee King will take you through the process of building an effective, user-friendly library website that will exand and enhance your library’s presence in its community.

This event will take place on Tuesday, August 3rd at 2:30pm Eastern (1:30pm Central, 11:30am Pacific).

Whether you’re looking to launch your first website, redesign your site, or expand the site you have, this workshop will provide practical guidance for every step of the process.”

Interested? You can find out a bit more on this page, and you can sign up here!

Designing Digital Experiences for Library Websites

On Sunday, I had the privilege of presenting about digital experiences with John Blyberg, Bobbi Newman, and Toby Greenwalt. The room was packed, there were great questions afterwards … and I think it went well!

Here are the slides for my portion of the talk (and here’s a link to Toby’s too).

Designing the Digital Experience at UGame ULearn

Yesterday, I presented Designing the Digital Experience at the UGame ULearn conference … here are my slides! And an fyi – I took notes for the other presentations, and I’ll be posting those in the next couple of days. So stay tuned!