Advantage Archives has three core values: Community, Partnership, and Engagement
It’s often thought of as a geographical location, but a community is any group of individuals that share a common thread. So if you live in a gated area, that’s a community, and if you’re a Vikings fan (SKOL), that’s a community, and if you enjoy the archives of Edgar Allen Poe, well that’s a community too. You can reside in a community, but you can also be a part of a community of like-minded individuals that generally support, uplift, and celebrate one another. That’s this community. (If you would like to join others in discussing, sharing, or showing off your Community History Archive, go to https://communityhistoryarchives.com).
We named our product the Community History Archives because we truly believe it’s about the community. Advantage provides free access in the hopes that our partners, in turn, allow it to be free for their patrons. We don’t aggregate your history with that of other communities; it stays nestled in your own CHA. So when you search for your grandfather with a crazy unique name, like Bob Smith, you may be getting lots of results, but they’re only from YOUR community. That makes it easier to narrow down and find who or what you are looking for. At Advantage, you don’t rent your history from us. You own it.
The word “Partnership” refers to a relationship where two or more people work together and cooperate towards a common goal. Partnerships aren’t a one way street. A successful partnership is based on trust, fairness, and reciprocity. It’s a symbiotic relationship. We want to eliminate the idea of “vendor” and “client” and fully embrace the concept of a Partnership. Is what we bring to the table mutually beneficial? Are we shouldering our fair share of the load? Most importantly, are we good partners? These are questions we are constantly asking ourselves. If the answer is ever anything other than a resounding “yes,” then we want to fix it. That’s how we believe a partnership should work.
You may have noticed how often we say “FREE ACCESS to your community’s history.” It’s true, there aren’t any recurring fees to keep your Community History Archive. There’s a reason for that. Our hope is that instead of renting your history from us month after month, year after year, you’ll add to it. Take that monthly or yearly price you thought you might have to pay, and use it to add even more content to your CHA. It helps us maintain the sites and keep the lights on, but most importantly, it adds more to your archive. We love sending out “____ has just added 50,000 pages to their archive!” posts on social media. It means we’ve just brought that much more of the past into the present.
This one is trickier, as you have no doubt discovered. Engaging your community may be the most important thing you can do. After all, if they aren’t engaged with what you’re doing, what’s the point? Advantage is striving to increase the engagement of your institution with the community that it serves. Your Community History Archive is an excellent tool to get your community involved. From finding a picture of their Great Aunt, to finding an old ad for snake oil, people find the CHAs fascinating. Sometimes it can be hard to explain to people just how interesting and important the archives are.
Other times, it’s hard to get the word out that the archive even exists. Our goal is to help you spread the word about your CHA, so the people of your community can make use of it. We believe history is important, and we want to make it as accessible as possible to as many people as possible.
Why They Are Important:
These three words aren’t buzz words or marketing: they are the very core of who we are. We have a passion for history, and we don’t want to see it lost. Better yet, we want to see it in the hands of the community that created it. In the library, in their homes, and with the PWA interface, even on the road using a mobile device.
Our goal is to help you continue to grow your archives and use your Community History Archive to engage your community. Additionally, we want to help you develop partnerships with other like-minded organizations within your community. We want assist you with any training or resources you may want or need. We’re committed to making the most out of your partnership with us.
Advantage believes strongly in building lasting partnerships, which is why we enter into them with the intent of shouldering our fair share. We take the burden off the community for the ongoing costs associated with storage, hosting, development, and maintenance. We are proud to participate actively in the community’s efforts to make their collective history more accessible. Advantage truly believe that what we bring to the table is a valuable resource for all communities.
Check out some of the diverse Community History Archives here:
If you would like to see your local history online, please contact your local library or institution, and encourage them to learn more about creating a CHA. Ask them to e-mail us at info@AdvantageArchives.com, or have them contact us at (855) 303-2727. Alternatively, send them to this link: https://www.advantagearchives.com/partnership-information/.
Interested in some of the different materials Advantage can handle? Check out this page: https://www.advantagearchives.com/offerings/