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Knowing your customers

Rowley, Jennifer (1997) Knowing your customers. ISSN 1758-3748

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Abstract

Have library managers been sufficiently aggressive in identifying and understanding their customers, given that the future of individual services and the profession as a whole rest to a large extent on customer perceptions? What do library managers need to know about their customers? This article examines some of the key concepts concerned with customers and consumer buying behaviour. It starts by seeking to explore the concept of customer for library and information services, and notes the roles of users, influencers and deciders. Many library and information services deal with ‘internal customers’. In order to offer an effective service to customers, it is important to identify the benefits sought by different groups or segments, and to understand the consumer decision-making process which is important in determining ‘purchase’ behaviour and the use of the service.

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