­Elevating the School Library: Building Positive Perceptions through Brand Behavior

ALA Eds. Sept. 2023. 184p. pap. $49.99. ISBN 9780838938706.
In our ever-online, social media-driven society, discussions of brands and branding are inescapable. Ballard and Johns adeptly explain the importance and nuance of brand behavior for school libraries. Though libraries are not exclusively businesses in the traditional sense, the authors share, many ideas from the business world can be adapted by school libraries in conjunction with the American Association of School Librarians (AASL) Standards to strengthen perceptions of library programs. Topics range from studies in user experience and service culture to best practices in data collection, assessment, and communication. One especially helpful chapter is dedicated to a case study of a fictitious library “extreme makeover,” illustrating theoretical concepts in practice. Whether libraries are looking to completely overhaul their brand or to make smaller adjustments, there is something for everyone in this book, which includes reflection questions at the end of each chapter and a robust index of templates, checklists, rubrics, and frameworks.
VERDICT Effective alignment of brand management principles and the AASL Standards, along with plenty of opportunities for reflection, make this book a valuable purchase for school library practitioners.

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