OrangeBoy Research and Analytic Efforts Guide Library’s Future

The Columbus Metropolitan Library found itself in a challenging position. A public institution "open to all," the library prided itself on offering diverse resources for multiple audiences. Yet, the library faced several challenges--serving a growing community, using resources effectively, and remaining relevant in the Internet age.

The library retained OrangeBoy to lead the cardholder and market study. OrangeBoy constructed a research design to capture the demographics, geographies, behaviors, and values of the library's cardholders. The data collection process incorporated a layered methodology, including:

  • Cardholder analysis
  • Ethnographic research at library branches
  • Branch intercept surveys
  • Online customer surveys
  • Online staff surveys and interviews

This multi-layered research approach provided OrangeBoy the opportunity to define cardholder behaviors, identify usage trends, and understand ongoing needs. OrangeBoy segmented the library’s cardholders based on the behaviors identified through the research process. OrangeBoy then helped the library prioritize the identified segments, called clusters, by facilitating planning sessions with the executive leadership team. The library selected three key clusters to anchor its strategic planning efforts—Young Minds, Virtual Users, and Power Users.

The development of cardholder clusters guided the library in its brand redevelopment, cultivating the successful creation and implementation of targeted messages, identity materials, and a visibility campaign to celebrate the library's 100 years of service to the community. The effort also positioned the library for the future by prioritizing customer segments and aligning services, programs, and facilities to meet their expectations.

OrangeBoy has continued its work with the library. One project incorporated the research findings to develop a product and service review process. Today, OrangeBoy provides analytical services to further identify the needs of the library’s priority customer segments.

"OrangeBoy has been a great partner to the Columbus Metropolitan Library," said Alison Circle, marketing communications manager. "We are always impressed with OrangeBoy's insights and understanding into our business," she added. "We thank them for taking such great care of our library, from our legacy to our future."

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