Staying Social: Trends for Boosting Usage at Your Library

Workflow | October 29, 2019

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Social media isn’t just for millennials. Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn are not only trends, they are marketing tools for organizations — including libraries.

Inbound marketing, which speaks to the process of gaining visibility for your company via social media, content marketing and search engine optimization, offers insight into a brand, giving consumers the tools to decide if a product or service is worth the time. These same techniques can be implemented at your library — helping to increase usage, boost new resources and attract patrons. Here are tips for increasing your library’s social media presence using meaningful content. You can also download the corresponding poster here for instant access to this great reference guide.

1. Plan to post. Posting on social channels on a regular basis not only keeps you in people’s minds, but also attracts more followers. Create new content monthly, bi-monthly or weekly — and stick to it.

2. Always engage. What do you like to see when you scroll through Instagram or Twitter? Advertising on social platforms allows libraries to interact simply with people. Create a poll or try to encourage followers ask questions. You’ll learn something new about your followers and keep them engaged.

3. Be a follower. Supporting local businesses is of the utmost importance — especially in the online-shopping era. Make sure to help those around you by following other local businesses and reposting or retweeting them when content is relevant to you or your followers. Bonus — this is also a way to post new content with minimal effort!

4. Keep time in mind. Social media is a never-ending news source, meaning you can’t be completely sure when your posts will pack the biggest punch. Experiment with posting at different times of day/night to try and find your sweet spot.

Webinar Replay: How to Promote Your Campus Library

5. Write once, share twice. If your library is already creating content including blog posts or newsletters, use it to your advantage. Don’t just promote this content on your website, tweet it out and share it on Facebook and Instagram. Cross-promotion on multiple channels can help you reach new people. Break out individual portions of your newsletter to tweet or even post the newsletter to social media to attract more subscribers. Have you tried LibraryAware yet? This could be the key to your success.

6. Stay concise. When posting, the old adage that “less is more” is true. Twitter limits character count, but Facebook does not. While the latter allows for more freedom, it’s best to keep posts short and sweet — readers don’t like having to scroll to finish a post. You can also try an infographic or an image to boost reactions or “likes.”

7. Perfect one platform at a time. It may be exciting to delve into many social platforms from the get-go. However, taking it slow and excelling at one channel at a time may be smarter. Take the time to develop a Twitter following that people are excited about and then use that knowledge to boost your Instagram or Facebook account.

8. Set goals. Be intentional with each action you take on social media. Establishing campaigns is a great way to measure the short-and long-term success of your goals.

9. Sharing is caring. Libraries are multi-faceted; why not show off what you’re doing with the community? Post about new titles, upcoming events, interesting facts about the library and more. A published report from the Pew Research Center found that 41 percent of the 2,252 people surveyed visited the library to bring a younger person to a class, program, or event. Posting about such events could help increase attendance.

10. Check out pre-made posts. It’s not always easy to think about new content or to figure out the best ways to promote new or existing resources like Flipster® digital magazines. Librarians can gain help on promoting Flipster with sample social media posts that are ready for customization. Sample social posts and other complimentary Flipster marketing materials are available on the Flipster Support & Training site.

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