Archive for September, 2012

Using Social Media in Your Library: Delegating Responsibilities

I apologize for the delay in posting.  I’m currently in the middle of moving, and things are a bit hectic right now.

For previous posts on Using Social Media in Your Library see this directory.

Previously, we’ve discussed considering your audience and purpose and choosing a platform.  Today we’re going to talk about delegating responsibilities.  This is the time when you will decide who will be in charge of creating and maintaining your social media.

Delegating a specific person or people to maintain the social media is important to ensure that the media is updated regularly and any comments are answered.  There is nothing less useful to your social media plan the a platform that is left without updating for weeks or even months.

The person or people you choose to be in charge of your social media will depend on the audience, the type of media, and how often you will want to update.  Choose those in charge very carefully.  The person or people will need to be familiar with the platform and educated in any necessary technology, clear as to the purpose of the social media to ensure updates are appropriate, able to express themselves clearly and without error, and willing to do so without begrudging the task.

Once you have delegated this responsibility, it’s important to make sure the person or people have been adequately trained on how to update, when to update, and what is appropriate for updating.  Making a schedule and brainstorming ideas at this point can help the individuals get started and remain on task while they are becoming familiar with the platform.  It also might be a good idea to create a social media policy if you do not already have one.  Some examples are available here.

Now that you’ve chosen your platform, stay tuned for next time when we’ll discuss the Creation of the Media.

Using Social Media in Your Library: Choosing a Platform

For previous posts on Using Social Media in Your Library see this directory.

Last time, we discussed audience and purpose.  Today we’re going to talk about platforms.  A platform is the social media service you will use.  Some examples include Facebook, Blogger, Twitter, or Vimeo. Each platform serves a different purpose and includes different pros and cons.

The first step to choosing your platform is to decide what type of social media you will be using.  Do you want a profile where you can friend people such as Facebook?  Do you want a blog – either traditional or microblogging?  Maybe you’d like to post videos or pictures.  Part of choosing the type of social media will relate back to your audience and purpose.  Each platform is more suited to a specific audience and for a specific use.

Next, you need to figure out a budget for your social media.  Will you be able to use a paid service or do you need a free one?  If you can pay, how much?  Remember, just because something is expensive does not mean it is better.  I’ve had great luck using many free services.  In fact, in some cases, I actually prefer the free offerings.

Once you’ve decided which type you’d like and your budget, you then need to research the various platforms available.  I’ve included a list here of a few examples for each.  This list is not exhaustive, however.  With a little searching of your own, you can find any platform to meet your needs.

Profiles:

Facebook
Google+
Myspace

 Blogging Services:

I recently created a LibGuide on libraries and blogging.  I listed several services there. 

MicroBlogging:

Twitter
Tumblr

Videos:

Vimeo
YouTube
Video Bam

Photos:

Flickr
Photobucket
Pinterest

Bookshelves:

Goodreads
Shelfari
LibraryThing

 

Now that you’ve chosen your platform, stay tuned for next time when we’ll discuss Delegating Responsibilities.