Social media is an essential tool for librarians today. Our exploration of social media tools this week reinforced this belief for me. It is crucial that we maintain some sort of social media presence. For me at an academic library I believe community building is key. We need to be seen as the heart of the campus. Promoting what we have to offer is vital (and we have a lot to offer). Libraries and librarians are constantly adapting and evolving; and once people realize what we have to offer they are usually quick to buy-in. But to make sure we are seen as essential and relevant we need to shout aloud to the world on occasion, because there are stereotypes to break down…
Social media allows us to create content that shows how we are innovating librarianship with today’s technology through instruction (teaching with iPads), research (LibGuides), collections (ebooks, streaming film), services (OverDrive, online tutorials), new initiatives (Digital Commons), and more. While creating content for marketing is important, interaction with our audience can turn it up a notch. I know I want to do a lot more with our Facebook/Twitter presence to foster interaction – this post gave some ideas. I think prizes will be key at first.
How I use social media as a consumer or for my own professional development is important too. I have used Facebook for years. I have a personal account and co-manage the library’s account. Regarding Twitter – I had dipped a toe in once and quickly threw in towel, just not enough time for another social media account. For this class I set up a new Twitter account and I found a lot of exciting Twitter-ers? to follow, so I plan to keep up a professional account this time. I am very excited about some of the educational technology accounts I have started to follow. I found a great article on having students post your school/library’s social media content. It is nice to get the reassurance that I was really doing something right when I created our student social media task force – and it encourages me to bring it back.
I wasn’t sure about how I could use Vine as a librarian, but I found this post useful for some ideas including brief how to find… videos or event promos. I visited a number of libraries’ Pinterest pages and saw some uses that make sense such as pinning faculty books and library services. There were some cute, for-fun pins too such as “libraries we love” and celebrity readers. Some of these were useful because they show we have a fun-side, but spending a lot of time on this would not be possible for me and some of these boards didn’t have much add-value. I’ll be sticking to Pinterest for personal use and my own professional development use, not library outreach. Tumblr is too public and seems like a great place for memes and gifs and not much else? Don’t get me wrong that’s fun, but it is one more thing when I already have other things that work for me. I think I should know about SnapChat because it is what the “kids” are using (for now); and because of this week’s content I do know more, but I’m going to stay away from it professionally and personally. I can do without LinkedIn, tried it for a second – nolikey. I am being peer pressured to get on the Instagram bandwagon, many are preferring this to Facebook these days. I could see myself doing this personally, and professionally it might be wise to start one however we already have Flickr which is photo-focused.
My end conclusion between number of platforms and plethora of content within each – there is not enough time in the day!
https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:The_Art_of_Social_Media.jpg by Pigsonthewing Wikimedia Commons originally posted https://www.flickr.com/photos/mkhmarketing/8468788107
https://www.flickr.com/photos/calsidyrose/6033655868 by Calsidyrose Flickr
http://www.flickr.com/photos/shawnzlea/2224108157 by Shawn Rossi Flickr