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Using Social Media Effectively in Your Library

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Lexi Mills

on 2 May 2014

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Transcript of Using Social Media Effectively in Your Library

Goals & Audience
Staff Commitment
Uses & How-To
Measuring Success
Using Social Media Effectively in Your Library
by Alexandra Mills
Library Technician

There are four important things to consider before diving into social media:
Goals & Audience
Uses & How-To
Staff Commitment
Measuring Success
where to begin?
how to choose?
Let's break things down!
With Canadians spending more time online than anyone else in the world it's no surprise that libraries are turning to the internet and social media to reach out to their patrons. However, with so many social media outlets out there and more being developed every day how do you know which ones to choose? How do you make the most of your online presence?
Facebook is an extremely popular social networking site. Users share status updates, links, photographs, instant messages etc. with their Facebook friends.
Work out a policy with your staff and figure out the following:
Who will be responsible for posting?
Find your voice.
How many times a day will staff contribute?
How many times a day will staff check for patron requests, comments or concerns?
What types of things will you post about?
Develop a strategy for handling negative comments and feedback.
Provide training on how to effectively use the site.
Decide what devices you will use i.e. computers, tablets, etc.
What are you hoping to accomplish by participating in social media? The following are some examples:
Increasing membership.
Reaching a different demographic.
Promoting a new collection or program.
Looking for community feedback and engagement.
Keeping your library up to date and modern.
Providing great customer service.
Instagram is a relatively new photo sharing app for Apple and Android smartphones and tablets. This app lets you take, and edit photographs with a variety of filters to share with your friends and followers. It began as a strictly mobile only app but has now expanded to the web.

Twitter is an online microblogging website. It is a great spot to send out or read quick blasts of information. Twitter was designed with SMS messaging in mind, hence the 140 character limit on your thoughts. Many users only access Twitter through mobile devices.
Pinterest is like an online corkboard. You gather information (links, videos, photographs) into one online account and categorize them into subject boards for easy access not only by you but by your followers too.

Next look at what the site was designed to be used for and figure out whether or not it would fit your social media needs.
What is the site intended for?
Sharing images? Updates? Links? Videos?
Quick bursts of information?
Professional networking?
How do you post and where can you post from?
Computer? What is the mobile app like?
How to make sure what you post reaches your target audience?
How do readers, followers, or likers engage with you?

Test run or trial period.
Give it a minimum of 6 months because a following can take some time to create and gain momentum.
Measure your success.
It's easy to track who and how many people follow or like you on social media.
Use third party apps to help track:
Reach: How many users are seeing your post.
Engagement: How many users are liking, commenting, etc on your posts.
Ask your patrons what they think. Online survey or even a quick paper one at the circ desk. People are opinionated, give them a chance to have their voices heard.
Other Tips for Success
Create an interesting looking page with a great bio
Have a consistant look accross your platforms - branding
Post regularly to keep them interested but not so much they become annoyed
Post interesting and topical content - i.e. trending topics, when it makes sense to
Post multimedia not just text
Learn the lingo - abbreviations i.e. LOL, RT, TBT
Find your voice - add humour?
Don't just post about you - include your community
Follow back (sometimes)
Host contests
Ask your followers to share or retweet your content (use sparingly)
Only have accounts on sites you will use
Invest the time in making your sites great - better to have one strong presence than 10 mediocre ones
Let people know you are on social media by adding the logo and your username to your already existing promotional material - i.e. posters, bookmarks, email signature, website, as well as your other social media sites.
Be open to trying new things
BE PREPARED TO MAKE CHANGES
4.75 billion items shared on Facebook every day
350 million photos uploaded on average every day
4.5 billion 'likes' per day
10+ billion messages sent per day
Over 1.2 billion monthly active users
757 million daily active users
53% of Facebook users are female
Age 25-34 make up almost 30% of users and is the most common age demographic
50% of 18-24 year olds go on Facebook when they wake up
Over 1 billion monthly active users using their mobile devices
Average time spent per visit is 20 minutes
23% of users check their account more than 5 times per day
75% of possible engagement occurs within the first 5 hours
Highest traffic occurs midweek between 1-3pm
Engagement is 18% higher on Thursdays and Fridays
Promoting Collections
How: Post pictures, status updates or links to other sites.

Readers Advisory
How: Post links to book reviews, write your own in a post, and add pictures. Ask your patrons what they think and what they would like to see.

Promoting Events or Programs
How: Create an events page and share it on your wall, invite your community, request feedback, post images of the event

Providing Alternate Methods of Reference
Give your patrons the option to message you with reference requests instead of email. This makes your services even more convenient.

Providing Customer Service
How: Check your library's Facebook multiple times a day and respond to patron questions and comments. The conversation is going to happen whether you are involved or not so use this as a method for damage control. Stay positive and address concerns.
Edmonton Public Library
https://www.facebook.com/EPLdotCA

Library & Archives Canada
https://www.facebook.com/LibraryArchives

Toronto Public Library
https://www.facebook.com/TorontoPublicLibrary
200 million monthly active users
57% check their accounts daily
35% check their accounts multiple times daily
Average user spends 257 minutes/month
Engagement on Instagram is 15x higher than Facebook
20+ billion photos shared
60 million avg uploaded daily
1.6 billion likes daily
43% of accounts post more than once daily
Popular tags include: #tbt #instagood #selfie #love
37% of 18-29 year olds on Instagram
18% of 30-49 year olds
68% are female
70+ million users
higher daily usage than Facebook
80% of pins are repins
80% of users are female
approximately 50% of users have children
ages 25-34 make up the largest user demographic, the next highest is the 35-44 age demographic
DIY/Crafts, Recipies and Quotes are among the most pinned
descriptions 20 characters or more long receive higher engagement
most repinnable words include: recipe, chicken, ideas, books
best time to pin is between 2 and 4pm
241 million monthly active users
500 million tweets sent out per day
76% of active Twitter users are on mobile
24% of users check their feed muliple times per day
69% of followers are suggested by friends
53% retweet others
72% post personal updates
40% share photos
55% share links to news stories
Saying "Please RT" gets 10x more retweets
Tweets with one or two hashtags receive 21% more engagement than those with three or more
Of the top 100 global fortune companies 77 are on Twitter
Fastest growing age demographic is 55-64
Slightly more females tend to use Twitter than males
The Facts
Library Uses
Library Examples
Make it Count
Use Facebook's built in "Insights" feature to figure out:
What time of day and day of the week your fans are online and try to time your posts for just before these times.
What kinds of posts encourage the most user engagement from your fans (photo, text, links, etc.)
Discover your reach (number of unique users who saw your post in their newsfeed)
Post regularly but don't overdo it. Try out third party apps such as Hootsuite and Buffer to schedule your posts.
Check your Facebook often for patron comments or questions and respond promptly and positively, providing great customer service.
Get on board with the trends. Post on #TBT or share some funny memes...such as...
The Facts
Library Examples
Library Uses
Make it Count
The Facts
Library Uses
Library Examples
Make it Count
The Facts
Library Uses
Library Examples
Make it Count
Promoting Collections
How: Post pictures of new books or interesting collections. Go #inthestacks.

Share History
How: Post some of those really cool pictures of your library, or library community's past. #tbt, #wbw or #fbf anyone?

Showcase Library Space
How: Post pictures of cool areas of the library (i.e. fireplaces, comfy seating, the view) or even before and after photos of renovations.

Promoting Events or Programs
How: Share promotional images of upcoming events and share photos when the events or programs are over. Share photos of finished crafts and products from workshops and children's programs.

Providing Customer Service
How: Check your library's Instgram regularly and respond to questions and comments promptly and positively. When responding to specific user use the @ symbol and type in their Instagram username..
Take advantage of some of the third party apps out there to track your engagement such as:
Iconosquare (Free)
Nitrogram ($)
Use popular hashtags. Take advantage of days like Throwback Thursday (#tbt). Don't overdue the hashtags, a few will suffice.
Don't cluster post. Post regularly to ensure that more people are viewing your images.
Check your Instagram often for patron comments or questions and respond promptly and positively, providing great customer service.
Emily Carr University Library
http://instagram.com/ecuad_library/

Fraser Valley Regional Library (BC)
http://instagram.com/readlearnplay

Brooklyn Public Library
http://instagram.com/BrooklynPublic
Promoting Collections
How: Post pictures of books, linking back to your catalogue or a book review on the library's blog.

Share History
How: Post some of those really cool pictures of your library, or library community's past. Link it back to your library's website.

Provide Reference
How: Post links to useful resources available online, or provide links to your library's databases.

Promoting Events or Programs
How: Share promotional images of upcoming events and share photos when the events or programs are over. Share photos of finished crafts and products from workshops and children's programs. Link these images back to your library's blog or website.

Providing Customer Service
How: Check your library's Pinterest regularly and respond to questions and comments promptly and positively. When responding to specific user use the @ symbol and type in their username..
Be careful of copyright infringement. Only post what you know you have the rights to post.
Don't go on posting sprees that clog up your followers' feeds. Post a few links at a time, and post regularly.
Choose interesting images to accompany your links. Pinterest is very visual and you will be competing with other images in your follower newsfeeds.
Keep hashtags to a minimum and keep descriptions brief.
Promoting Collections
How: Tweet about new additions to your collection or even rediscovered items. Use text and images for greater effect.

Chat About Trends
How: Post some of those really cool pictures of your library, or library community's past. Join in the #tbt discussion. Watch the trending topics and take part in discussions relevant to your library or community.

Promoting Events or Programs
How: Share promotional images and information of upcoming events and share photos when the events or programs are over. It's okay to remind people more than once about an event but don't go overboard.

Providing Customer Service
How: Check your library's Twitter regularly and respond to questions and comments promptly and positively. When responding to specific user use the @ symbol and type in their username.
Take advantage of third party apps to help track your user engagement and figure out the best times of day to tweet and tweet shortly before those times to ensure maximum reach.
Keep your tweets very concise. The character limit is 140 but leave room for users to quote your tweets and add in their own text as well.
Add variety to your tweets by including pictures and links as opposed to straight text.
Use hashtags sparingly.
Provide prompt and positive customer service by responding to your user's questions or concerns.
Get to know your followers. Follow back.
Regina Public Library
https://twitter.com/OfficialRPL

University of Lethbridge Library
https://twitter.com/ulethlibrary

St. Lawrence College Library
https://twitter.com/SLCLibraries
Brantford Public Library
http://www.pinterest.com/btfdlibrary/

Rutherford Libary University of Alberta
http://www.pinterest.com/rutherfordlib/

Fraser Valley Regional Library
http://www.pinterest.com/readlearnplay/
Are You Sure?
Questions?
Contact Me: alexandranicolemills@gmail.com
Sources:
Faber, Helen. "Canadian Social Media Statistics 2013." Web Fuel. 14 August 2013. <http://www.webfuel.ca/canadian-social-media-statistics-2013/>

Geoff. "15 Amazing Facts about Facebook in 2013." We Are Social Media. 16 September 2013. <http://wearesocialmedia.gr/15-amazing-facts-about-facebook-in-2013/>

Costill, Albert. "25 Insane Social Media Facts." 10 December 2013. <http://www.searchenginejournal.com/25-insane-social-media-facts/79645/>

"Company Info" <http://newsroom.fb.com/company-info/>

Noyes, Don. "The Top 20 Valuable Facebook Statistics." 19 February 2014. <http://zephoria.com/social-media/top-15-valuable-facebook-statistics/>

Kotenko, Jam. "Facebook Reveals We Upload a Whopping 350 Million Photos to the Network Daily." 18 September 2013. <http://www.digitaltrends.com/social-media/according-to-facebook-there-are-350-million-photos-uploaded-on-the-social-network-daily-and-thats-just-crazy/#!Hdg8r>

"Instagram" <http://instagram.com/press/>

Herman, Jenn. "Instagram Statistics for 2014." 17 February 2014. <http://jennstrends.com/instagram-statistics-for-2014/>

"About" <https://about.twitter.com/company>

"Twitter Stats Infographic and Twitter Facts from 2012 and 2013." <http://www.socialmediadd.com/Articles.asp?ID=248>

"Infographic Social Media Statistics for 2013." 10 January 2013. <http://www.digitalbuzzblog.com/infographic-social-media-stats-2013/>

Dodaro, Melonie. "Shocking Social Media Statistics for 2013." 14 August 2013. <http://topdogsocialmedia.com/social-media-statistics-2013/>

"Pinterest for Business." Visual.ly. 20 June 2012. <http://visual.ly/pinterest-business>

"Getting More Out of Pinterest [Infographic]." Marketing Pilgrim. 11 April 2012. <http://www.marketingpilgrim.com/2012/04/getting-more-out-of-pinterest-infographic.html>

Lormier, Danielle. "25 Things That Make You Look Dumb on Pinterest." <http://blogs.constantcontact.com/product-blogs/social-media-marketing/pinterest-for-business/>



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