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Introduction to Marketing of Library and Information Services

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    The main objectives of the libraries today are to obtain self-sufficiency in their resources and to provide an optimum level of services to reach more potential users and encourage the use of library resources. This naturally requires a "shift from product or service orientation to customer or need orientation" (Kavulya, 2004). Different marketing concepts provide libraries with the tools for collecting and analyzing useful data about information needs of customers, which assists in designing, developing and delivering appropriate services. Nelson (1983) argues that "needs assessment is central to any program of product development and essential to establish the targets for any marketing process". Irrespective of the type of the library, the need to develop customer-centered and strategic market planning has now become part of effective library management. University libraries invest a huge amount on collection development, processing and storage of information resources. These resources, which are so expensive, often remain unutilized resulting in wastage of money, time, energy and space. The libraries can solve their problem of underutilization of resources and services by applying marketing principles. In university libraries application of marketing principles implies: first, the library should identify its objectives; second, identify its target users and their particular needs; and third, develop products and services aimed at these categories. In this way university library becomes a market-oriented organization in which all operations including acquisition, storage and

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