Ready for the Next Chapter: re-defining relevance with a data-driven awareness campaign

Cory Greenwood
4 min readJan 13, 2024

In the ever-evolving landscape of information access, public libraries face a constant challenge: remaining relevant and resonating with diverse communities. Yarra Libraries in Melbourne, Australia, tackled this head-on with a strategic awareness campaign that embraced data-driven insights, bold creativity, and a deep understanding of their community. This campaign went on to win the prestigious IFLA PressReader Marketing Award in 2022, and its story holds valuable lessons for library professionals who want to rethink outreach and engagement or are considering their own application for this year’s award.

Understanding the Need
Yarra Libraries started by analyzing years of community consultation data. Over 4,000 pieces of feedback collected over 3–5 years were analysed. They discovered a disconnect between the valuable services they offered, like digital literacy classes and homework help, and the community’s awareness of them. This discrepancy became the campaign’s core focus: bridging the gap between perception and reality, and challenging outdated perceptions of library services.

The campaign was motivated by the development of Yarra Libraries’ next strategic plan which would guide service delivery and development over the coming years. To ensure a robust consultation, the campaign was rolled out approximately two months prior and sought to address misconceptions and update the community on what the library currently offered to progress the conversation into what the library could offer in the future once formal consultations began.

Phase one focussed on awareness. Phase two focussed on consultation.

A Visual Revolution
Yarra Libraries opted for an unconventional, vibrant visual identity for this campaign, swapping their usual, corporate branding with neon pink, yellow and blue. 300 large-scale posters were plastered across high-traffic…

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Cory Greenwood

Public Libraries | Marketing & Community Engagement