Saturday, September 12, 2015

Learning to use (and love!) social media in your school library

One of my best friends likes to tease me by comparing me to a Luddite when it comes to my use of technology. I don’t have any personal social media accounts and still use my trusty flip phone. I grew up in the age of Atari and Commodore 64. When I graduated college in 1996, I still hadn’t been introduced to email. And as late as 2000, I conducted some of my research in graduate school via microfiche!

While I’ve tried to keep up with many aspects of our ever evolving technology, I’ve never embraced social media. Surprisingly, I’m not introverted. In fact, many would describe me as outgoing, but I don’t have a desire to share my life on Facebook, Instagram and the like. As a result, I hadn’t thought much about the ways social media could promote our school library.

Last year, I received an email from Library Services asking for my Twitter handle and learned that we would be using Twitter as a way to communicate ideas and share all the great things we do as MNPS librarians. This was the push I needed to set up an account. At that time, I had never used Twitter nor did I have an understanding of the many ways it could be used. Now I’ve engaged in Twitter Chats, posted pictures of student work, Tweeted with colleagues, and advertised library events.

Managing a social media account takes some time, but I have found it to be an effective tool to let others know about what’s happening in our library. If you’re not using social media, my challenge to you would be to open one account that you can get excited about using to promote your library and give it a solid try for one school year. Also, feel free to tweet me with the results @ShayneLibrary!

MNPS Librarian

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