The SRC Programming Guide

Quick Reference Guide #4: Promoting your Summer Reading Club


Quick Reference Guide #4: Promoting your Summer Reading Club

When promoting the program, keep in mind that you may want to promote to non-library visitors and people that have not participated in a Summer Reading Club before as well as to existing library users.

Here are some ideas:

  • Library display – Create a display close to the library entrance or near the Children/Young Adult areas. Make the displays fun and interesting; include the SRC posters, merchandise incentives and bookmarks as well as items that children and young people can borrow. Add to your display art work, stories and activities that children create as a part of your program. Ask children and teens for their ideas about how to decorate the library during the summer.

Use your display area to publicly acknowledge and promote all the reading that’s being done and to help participants feel part of a reading community. Some options include:

  • Place a clear, Perspex box in the library and invite children and teens to place the titles of books they have read during the summer into the box. Everyone can watch the number of papers grow, and the library will have a running total of books of how many books have been read.
  • Display an interactive board that shows the growing number of books read in your community during the summer.
  • Invite everyone who signs up for or completes the summer reading program to write their name on a theme-based die-cut shape (or write their name on one large shape) and display them (or it) prominently in the library.
  • Create a readers paper chain around the library: add one link for each book read by a summer reading participant.
    Examples of SRC Library Displays are available at
  • School visits – Primary and secondary schools are a good place to promote the Summer Reading Club and other public library services. Use the Letter to Schools template located in the SRC Dropbox to promote your SRC to local schools in your area. Ask if you can have an article in the school newsletter or go and speak about the Summer Reading Club at an assembly. You could even send them bookmarks to put in their school library.
  • Local media – Local media are always looking for stories from the community. Customise the Media Release template located in the SRC Dropbox and distribute to local newspapers and radio stations. It’s a good idea is to send out a second media release to the local paper shortly after you start running the club. Invite them to write an article and take photos of one of your activities. This can be a great way to promote other activities you have planned and encourage more people to sign up to your club.
  • Parents – Advertise the program in venues that parents frequent e.g. child care centres, supermarkets, dentists, medical centres and real estate agencies to catch the attention of parents
    new to the area. Send information to school Parent & Citizen or Parent & Friends associations.
  • Community groups – Similar to school visits, you may be able to send information and/or go and talk to local community groups such as Scouts and Guides, sporting clubs, youth groups and church groups.
  • Young people – One of the best ways to reach out to young people is through other young people. Talk to the young people who visit your library; if they’re interested they will tell their friends about your club or may be able to suggest places that young people may see your posters, such as a shopping centre or youth space area. Your council’s youth officer will have direct access to young people and may also be able to pass on information.
  • Local Council – Email council staff involved in youth and community development or send information to the staff newsletter about the Summer Reading Club. If your library or council has an email update or newsletter they send to residents, get an article about the Summer Reading Club included in the December and January issue.
  • Holiday Care programs – Approach the local holiday care programs and offer to run a session on the website or invite them to weekly activity sessions in the library.