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moving knowledge: MnDOT Library John Cotton Dana Award Application

Implementation & Creativity

Brand Development: The marketing and communication plan focused on establishing a consistent brand, a visual identity, and clear messaging of the mission and vision for the library.  Law Library Consultants, Inc., who subcontracted with Modern Design Group and Diane Foote Design Associates, were awarded the consultant contract.

Deliverables:  A new library logo that ties in with the MnDOT agency logo, and a new tagline, (“moving knowledge”), which clearly conveys the purpose of a dynamic transportation research library, were used in branding the following:

  • New Printed Materials – a banner, postcard, brochure, bookmark, business card, flyer, stationery, magnifier, notepad, posters and tabletop displays.  
  • New Digital Materials – a 3-minute video that explains the library’s resources and services, a new MS PowerPoint template, and a comprehensive website redesign.  The new website has improved navigation, highlights key resources, incorporates the new brand identity, complies with new web standards (ADA), and is more user-friendly. 
  • Physical Space Remodel - made the space more inviting for users, more effective for staff, and more functional overall.  MnDOT upper management directed MnDOT Library to keep sustainability in mind.  More furniture was repurposed than purchased; study carrels were converted to group work tables, work chairs were recovered with contemporary fabric and casters were added for mobility.  Comfortable high-back reading chairs and end tables were purchased.  A new copy center/work area was created with a polished oak finish.  Two service points, a circulation desk and a reference desk were consolidated into a single oak library service desk, making it clear where to go for assistance.  A large display bookcase was purchased and an enclosed office was created for the Library Director by repurposing the former reference cubicle.  Updated signage was added in the hallway, and the walls and pillars were painted.  Transportation-themed photographs taken by MnDOT’s award-winning photographer were hung throughout the library.  Plans were established for holding events in the library such as celebrations for National Library Week, and an agency-wide Commissioner’s Reading Corner book discussion group initiated by the library and supported by the Commissioner of Transportation and upper managers. 
  • Innovative Use of New Technologies - MnDOT's upper management charged the library staff to become leaders in emerging technologies within the organization.  As part of the space redesign, two MnDOT network computers and Wi-Fi service (two public Wi-Fi computers, and wireless access and printing for mobile devices) were added.  Popular social networking tools such as Facebook, YouTube and Twitter were offered as a pilot, which led to the eventual unblocking of these sites on MnDOT work computers.  As a part of the social media access process, library staff were interviewed and participated in a risk assessment panel.  A wiki of emerging technologies that could be useful for MnDOT staff was created and added to the library's website.  Another innovation was the addition of an e-Reader lending program which has led to discussions with upper management about how the library can be involved in future uses of tablet devices (including iPads and eBooks) throughout the department. 

Communication:  The campaign was celebrated by a grand reopening event which was publicized in MnDOT’s newsletter, on an electronic message board, through email and discussion list announcements, and on large poster signage.  In addition, postcards (3,000 total) were mailed to everyone in the transportation building and to individuals in MnDOT’s public partner organizations throughout the Twin Cities metro area.  The open house event, which included speeches by MnDOT’s Commissioner and upper managers, was broadcast via Adobe Connect to the outlying district offices.

The results of the campaign include a professional, contemporary brand and logo that more closely align the library to its parent organization.  A complete set of marketing tools position the staff to promote library services at office meetings, conferences, and other opportunities as they arise.  All of the new marketing materials integrate a consistent message, brand, and visual identity.