Blog

13 October 2016 - 2:07pm | by Ginny Mies

Woman looking at spreadsheet on computer

This post originally appeared on TechSoup.org. We're sharing it here because libraries also need to measure their social media activities to understand what is working well and what could be improved. Happy measuring!

When you're new to the world of social media analytics, it can be quite overwhelming not only trying to determine what to measure, but what tool to use. We recently published a recap of our webinar on social media analytics with Laura Solomon, a librarian and social media expert. There was so much covered in that hour that we barely scratched the surface in our recap and didn't have a chance to focus on analytics tools.

19 September 2016 - 2:50pm | by Ginny Mies

Of the tasks that can make you go cross-eyed during your off-desk hours, one might be measuring social media analytics. Often, you have more questions than answers. What should we measure, and which measurements matter the most? What do the experts say? How does that apply to my library, and what can I show my administration or board? How do we even know if our numbers are good ones?

We invited Laura Solomon, author of The Librarian's Nitty-Gritty Guide to Social Media and Library Services Manager at the Ohio Public Library Information Network, to our August webinar. Here's what she said matters most when it comes to social media analytics in public libraries.

15 September 2016 - 11:26am | by Ginny Mies

Computer cat

We know that you're busy and might not know the full scope of what TechSoup offers libraries. This is why we hold quarterly free webinars that can help you take advantage of everything we do! Join us for the next TechSoup for Libraries - Maximize Your Technology Services with TechSoup webinar on September 22 at 11 a.m. Pacific time.

Here are a few things you'll learn.

1. You can register all of your branches at once.

Does your library have multiple branches, but only your main library is registered? Or maybe you have many locations, and the thought of trying to get every single one of them registered seems totally overwhelming? Guess what? You can register all of your library branches at once with TechSoup's bulk registration process! Here's what John Sarmiento, network engineer for the Peninsula Library System in California, said about bulk registration:

"It was such an easy process for me to get my 30 libraries registered with TechSoup using their bulk import tool. Now all 30 of my libraries can reap the cost saving benefits of acquiring software from TechSoup."

You'll learn more about this at our upcoming webinar, but you can email our client services team if you want to get started right away.

30 August 2016 - 3:24pm | by Ginny Mies

Librarian. Library Assistant. Page. Information Specialist. Cataloguer. These are just a handful of some of the job titles you'll find at a library. But what about "Tech Worker"? Pam Saliba and Andrea Cecchetto, branch managers for the Markham Public Library, embarked on a mission to change the way library staff viewed technology and their place in the technology world.

We invited Pam and Andrea to our July webinar to share with other libraries how they got the Markham staff on-board with technology. Andrea and Pam opened up the webinar by asking our attendees whether they think of themselves as technology workers. Interestingly, 67 percent responded that yes, they do see themselves as tech workers.

A Cultural Shift Toward Technology

Markham, located just north of Toronto, is known as Canada's high-tech capital. It's the home of 900 technology companies and their employees. In response to the booming technology industry, the Markham Library started hosting maker and coding events, launched a digital media lab, and purchased 3D printers. But to get the staff on-board with this cultural shift toward technology, the Markham Library had to do some work internally.  

23 August 2016 - 1:50pm | by Ginny Mies

Bookmarked book

This is the beginning of a recurring series in which we'll share articles, blog posts, and other resources that have piqued the TechSoup for Libraries team's interest. Most of what we share will be related to library technology, but we'll occasionally include some other stories that we think are of interest to the TechSoup for Libraries community. And because TechSoup is a global organization, we'll also share some stories about libraries overseas. Enjoy!

2 August 2016 - 11:59am | by Ginny Mies

Cedar Rapids coaster

You know your library rocks — but does your community know it? To change perceptions of the library, we need to demonstrate how the library is not only relevant but is also a place for fun and learning. Outside the Lines is a weeklong celebration (September 11 – 17, 2016) that showcases the creativity and innovation happening in libraries.

A big component of sharing this creativity is by way of social media. For a recent webinar, we invited Erica Grossman, creative lead in the Innovations Department at Anythink Libraries in Adams County, Colorado, to share some tips for participating in Outside the Lines. Erica was part of the creative team that developed and launched Outside the Lines and is currently on its planning committee.

You can watch the full webinar here, but here are some of the highlights.  

14 July 2016 - 12:29pm | by Ginny Mies

 

privacy keyboard

Patron privacy is an ongoing issue in the library world. In the modern library, data collection is a reality, and customer information is a double-edged sword. On the one hand, data collection allows libraries to understand their patrons better and personalize services. On the other hand, collecting and using patron data is a serious challenge to the library profession's ethical commitment to protecting patron privacy. And it gets even more complicated when this data is handled by a third-party vendor, such as an integrated library system or an online catalog.

For our June webinar, we invited two privacy experts to explore these issues and discuss tips and resources.

7 July 2016 - 4:24pm | by Ginny Mies

ALA 2016 logo

If you've ever attended American Library Association's Annual Conference, you'll probably agree with me that it is two things: useful and overwhelming. I generally try to hit as many tech-related sessions as I can with a few author signings thrown in here and there.

But by the time I get home, I look at my massive Google Doc of notes and think, "Wait, what did I learn again?" This year in Orlando, I tried a different technique. As I took notes, I highlighted the key tech tips from the sessions I went to. I've picked out some of my favorites, so if you too are feeling overwhelmed or were not able to go, I hope you find these beneficial to your library's tech goals!

21 June 2016 - 11:52am | by Ginny Mies

Recent research from the Pew Institute shows that only 59 percent of older adults go online. New technologies can be difficult to learn, and older adults may not understand the benefits of using technology. But libraries can help older adults adopt technology in meaningful ways for communication, lifelong learning, and entertainment.

Small class at St. Mary's Library

TechSoup for Libraries hosted a webinar in May on teaching older adults technology at the library. We invited the following speakers to share tips and tools:

15 June 2016 - 4:15pm | by Ginny Mies

The #PulseOrlandoSyllabus is a list compiled by librarians and teachers of information resources, teaching materials, books and digital materials focusing on the intersections of LGBTQIA community and people of color. The list includes comics, zines, plays, podcasts, LIS resources, scholarly books, and much more compiled within a 60+ page Google doc.

The result showcases what libraries do best: compiling, collecting, and organizing information to benefit communities. You can share it with your community using this easy-to-remember URL: bit.ly/orlandosyllabus.

Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.