Trend Tracking: . A tool to help your library better serve the needs of your community. Have some fun with this. Don’t think of it as brain surgery. There are many ways to get there. What are trends? What is trend tracking?. Merriam-Webster. Definition of TREND
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Trend Tracking: A tool to help your library better serve the needs of your community
Merriam-Webster • Definition of TREND • a:a general direction • b:a new direction or shift
Types of trends (from trendwatching.com) • Macro trends (STEEP) • Social • Technological • Economic • Environmental • Political • Industry trends • Libraries • Consumer trends • Fashion, décor, consumer technology
Industry trend - libraries • Digitizationof information
Trend tracking is… • Looking for those pieces of yarn • Figuring out the implications • Are you are going to develop a new service or product for your community?
Focus on the future Versus staying stuck in yesterday
We aren’t just in the business of books any longer • Libraries are now also asked to be observers and interpreters of cultural change • We identify the trend and then we help library users figure out how/if it can be used in their lives
How to tell what trends are developing, whether they are important, and how you can use those trendsfor your library and community
Follow “cool hunters” trendhunter.com thecoolhunter.net coolhunting.com trendcentral.com(Cassandradaily)
To say it another way… • If you encounter an idea that grabs your imagination and energizes you… • No matter where it comes from… • Think to yourself “Is there any way I can use that in my library?”
Step 2: look for patterns and connections Keep track of ideas that “pop” into your head Look for repetition of words and ideas Different words or phrases that fall into the same “family” of meaning Similar patterns of behavior Intuition
Trampoline parks are making a comeback Nostalgic fiber arts are being updated for the modern age New means of correspondence evoke the days of Western Union Country living is influencing big city design As people seek out more traditional, simple living, yurts experience a surge in popularity Designers are looking to earthborn materials for fashion forward accessories
Step 3: identify the trend • Subjective • Again, look for repetition, patterns • Do they make a whole?
Trampoline parks are making a comeback Nostalgic fiber arts are being updated for the modern age New means of correspondence evoke the days of Western Union Country living is influencing big city design Fresh products and services encourage young families to forge new bonds As people seek out more simple living, yurts experience a surge in popularity Designers are looking to earthborn materials for fashion forward accessories
Making a comeback Nostalgia Nostalgic Evoke the days Desire for or interest in simpler times Country living encourage young families to forge new bonds Return to traditional values As people seek out more simple living, yurts experience a surge in popularity earthborn materials
Step 4: Brainstorm implications • What effect might this trend have on your community? • Is it likely to be a big, important trend? • Consider: • Number of people who could be affected? • Impact on multiple age groups or just one? • Long-term ramifications? • Implications across multiple areas (business, social, financial) or just one? • Make sure you understand the demographics of your community
If the trend seems important: • How can your library respond to this trend in a way that is helpful to your community? • Books/materials? • Programs? • Support (such as computer training)? • Technology? • Outreach? • Changing your service model? • Training staff?
Impact: • Brunswick is a retirement community with a disproportionately large group of 65+ library users and young parents • Trend seems particularly important to two groups: baby boomers/seniors and young parents • Appears to a be a trend that is changing many areas of society (families, religion, business, social relationships) and will be around for some time • Therefore, this is likely to be an important trend in my community Nostalgia Desire for or interest in simpler times Return to traditional values
Services: • Genealogy training • Local history programs • Family night at the library • Programs: • How to preserve family photos • Professional organizer program • Community Read focus on local eating, farming • Speakers on family farming, gardening • Knitting and craft groups • Materials: • Genealogy books – how-to and reference • Information about “traditional” hobbies like rug hooking, knitting
Or… • A smaller trend? • An interesting trend but not that important? • Always ask: what value might this trend have for my community?
My rule of thumb • Value here for community? • Still valuable a year from now? • Some way to “try it out” without breaking the bank? • If you answer yes - move forward!
Work in teams • Talk about ideas with others • How do they respond? • Can you build off of each other’s ideas?
Step 5 : Let the ideas Percolate Ask for input Consider available resources and expertise Then review and edit
Step 6: finalize and Summarize your idea • No more than 2 pages • Summary • Source of idea • Value to community • Value to library • Cost • Timeline • Resources needed • Potential issues • How to measure success 2
2 pages • Easily understood? • Demonstrates you have thought through implications • Easy for decision makers to review and understand possibilities • If turned down – find out why and how you might address issues/concerns