5 services libraries provide to help grow your business
Updated: Feb 27, 2019
When we think about the library, we tend to think about books. Lots and lots of books. Which is actually pretty accurate. What we might not always remember is that libraries are one of the greatest free public resources for small businesses owners, with a variety of library services designed for local businesses.
1. Help or complete research from a librarian
Starting a new business, or growing your current one is all about research; knowing who to target, who are your competitors, etc. Information is valuable and is indeed one of the key success factors of a business. Librarians are perceived as being the most qualified people in terms of information research. It’s a valuable skill that libraries share with the business community of their city.
2. Study and Meeting Rooms
Small businesses and entrepreneurs don’t have the same resources as other larger businesses. For example, a lot of employees from small businesses work from a rented office, or even from home. They might not have access to a conference room when they have an important business meeting or to a venue to offer seminars. The Poplar Creek Library offers six study rooms (2 with collaboration technology) and three meeting rooms.
3. Video creation lab
Facebook and Google have been telling us for years now: the future of Social Media is all about video. Small businesses and entrepreneurs need to follow this trend. However, they don’t have the same resources as a bigger company and they can’t always have access to the material needed to create videos.
That’s where libraries are helpful. By offering video equipment, libraries help a lot of small businesses to follow this trend. Streamwood Public Library is ahead of the curve, they give access to their Studio 1405, where users can record and create videos that have professional quality. This can save businesses a lot of money because professional video production is often expensive.
4. Access to learning platforms
Most employees of small businesses wear many hats at their workplace; accountant, marketer, seller, website developer, etc. However, it is hard to have background experience in all the fields that will be needed of them, and they need to adapt quickly.
By allowing them access to learning platforms, for example, Lynda.com, libraries alleviate the cost that most small businesses can’t afford.
5. Access to different data banks
We hear about it everywhere now: data is the key to business success. Not all authoritative information can be found for free on Google and, usually, the local library has a dedicated page to an amazing list of research tools available for free for their users. At the library, the local businesses can have access to various data that contain useful information and relevant industry research results to better their business.
These are only a few examples of how the library works with small businesses and entrepreneurs.