Ssu twitter guidelines


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Ssu twitter guidelines

  1. 1. Twitter Guidelines: Basic Usage Guide for the Sonoma State University Library Joe J. Marquez Samantha Lange October, 2009 (revised March, 2010)
  2. 2. Why Twitter? The Library Twitter account was created to engage the campus and surrounding community. Given the current fiscal climate in the State of California, the Twitter account was created with the hopes of "getting the word out" and having the library seen as more than just a place of books. Its main purpose was to highlight workshops, events, research tools, and alerts in the library. This is an ongoing experiment with a currently en vogue Web 2.0 tool. An initial experiment period was agreed upon. When that time is up (two semesters) a discussion will ensue as to how to proceed with this project or to end it. Regardless of the name, the purpose of having the library communicate to its users is essential. Twitter currently provides a free infrastructure with which to communicate in brief and thus it was chosen. Twitter was chosen because the infrastructure (the ability to post content, the ability for consumers to link to the RSS feed of the posted content) was in place. A traditional blog could have been used, but the appeal of Twitter was threefold, 1) the brevity of the message would be a welcomed challenge in getting information out about the library, 2) Twitter's current wave of popularity will ensure that it is not a foreign concept, regardless of how many people actually have accounts, 3) Twitter is free, as are the associated tools we use to capture stats and to tweet, and widely used. This document was created to provide a basic idea and guidelines on how to tweet for the Sonoma State University Library. How to Tweet 140 characters limit Use Hootsuite. Hootsuite allows us to add URLs and track clicks. Shrink all URLs with the Hootsuite shrinking tool, this allows us to track clicks on a posted link Put the URL at the end of the tweet When using the word 'today' or 'tomorrow', follow up with a specific date (i.e. (10/12)) Add title, location, room number (when necessary), time, duration We will tweet at least once/wk Create a list of filler tweets in case nothing is happening in the library RT before retweeting @ before a username to give credit DM, direct message, all users following ssulib and tell them, "Thank you for following the Sonoma State University Library." (this is a courtesy but not a necessity) Use a hash # before creating a topic What to Tweet about When the idea to implement a Twitter feed in the Library was introduced (July, 2009), the original scope of content to tweet about was limited to library-related material. The scope was broadened (Spring semester, 2010) to encompass more activities related to the Sonoma State campus. When
  3. 3. possible we would make a link to library materials or related activity being performed by the library. New library material Hours of operation Sudden changes in database availability Library-sponsored events (i.e. lectures, presentations) Gallery openings Convocation Graduation Finals and mid-term schedules Campus emergency freely available reference or research tools that may have a general audience appeal based on interest and usefulness Campus events (i.e. lecture series, Sonoma Film Institute schedule) Tweeting, Classification System & Statistics Using Twitter in the Library is an ongoing experiment. It is a method to communicate with the campus, library users, as well as the surrounding community. No benchmarks were established to determine success, but we did employ tools that would help with the collection of statistics as well as creating a classification system by which we could measure overall interest in this new tool. Hootsuite ( is a free, web-based application that allows you to manage a twitter account. Hootsuite allows you to schedule tweets, shrink URLs for statistics tracking, and manage followers. Once a month we download tweets and save to a spreadsheet using Tweetake ( . This is a free service that allows you to download tweets sent. Hootsuite allows us to keep statistics on all clicks on links in tweets. If no link exists, we won’t be able to track usage. To further analyze what is of interest to people following us or reading our feed online, a classification scheme was devised in order to group tweets. Resources (R) –resources, websites, specific items, movies or databases, new library materials, non-library related search engines or articles About (A) - changes in library hours, database availability, finals and mid-term schedules, surveys Workshops (W) - Library workshops Events (E) - Gallery events, campus lectures, convocation, graduation Misc.(M) – miscellaneous, announcements about non-library changes, anything random
  4. 4. Twitter Tools Below is a collection of Twitter-related tools Creating polls, Twitter HootSuite Tweetake Twitter for Librarians libraries/ Follow the Trends 140 characters or less Twitter class @ UW