A digital librarian’s toolkit     Stuff We Use To Learn About Patrons        at the New York Public Library               ...
DISCLAIMER: A digital librarian’s toolkit             NOTTHE digital librarian’s toolkit
12 Ways NYPL islistening to patrons
12 Ways NYPL islistening to patrons(And you can too, for free!)
1. Watch your patrons       do stuff
“You can observe a lot    by watching.”        -- Yogi Berra
“Breaking the system and fixing the systemare two different jobs.”
2. Look at what’s on     every screen    in your library
Instructions are signals    of design failure    Tip o’ the hat to William McDonough
Your patrons are   not stupid
None of your patrons like to feel stupid
“If you have trouble with the concept of design humility,   consider this: it took us  5,000 years to put wheels       on ...
3. Send user feedback   to your software       vendors
4. Google Analytics
5. Decide what metricsmeasure your success
NYPL Digital Gallery  2009 Redesign
NYPL Digital Gallery   2009 Redesign • Pages Per Visit: 13   Down 26.09%
NYPL Digital Gallery   2009 Redesign • Pages Per Visit: 13   Down 26.09% • Average Time On Site: 5:11   Down 17.83%
Conclusion: Success!
NYPL Digital Gallery  2009 Redesign
NYPL Digital Gallery   2009 Redesign• Total Visits: 879,307 Up 62.5%
NYPL Digital Gallery   2009 Redesign• Total Visits: 879,307 Up 62.5%• Pageviews: 11.5M Up 20.2%
NYPL Digital Gallery   2009 Redesign• Total Visits: 879,307 Up 62.5%• Pageviews: 11.5M Up 20.2%• Traffic from Search Engine...
How long shoulda web visit be ?
6. Twitter search
7. Look for stories in your search terms
What’s the mostpopular search term   on nypl.org?
[second level]
[pics]
8. List things your    patrons arepassionate about
(Ask your staff.They will know.)
a. Audienceb. Services c. Words
9. Extend theconversation about   those things
9a. Blogs
Better relationships =   more discovery
9b. Social Networks
9c. Wikipedia
10. Steal an idea
Capitalize on the warm     fuzzy feelings
11. Play, especially withthe line between online       and physical
12. Infomaki
“I don’t like    thebackground   color.”
“We’ve done a                    double-blind,                 randomly sampled“I don’t like       survey of 645    the   ...
“We’ve done a                            double-blind,                         randomly sampled“I don’t like    The       ...
sourceforge.net/projects/infomaki          labs.nypl.org
“Free, as in kittens.”
Results
• 231 questions
• 231 questions• 111,823 responses
• 231 questions• 111,823 responses• 10,203 respondents
• 231 questions• 111,823 responses• 10,203 respondents• 484 responses per question
• 231 questions• 111,823 responses• 10,203 respondents• 484 responses per question• 10.96 answers per session
“Support”
“Community”
“Apply”
Be surprised.
Thank You!          Michael Lascarides        Digital User Analyst, NYPLPresented to the Hawaii Library Association       ...
Picture CreditsAll photos by Michael except for Rock Music vs. Oil Production, from:http://www.overthinkingit.com/2008/09/...
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit
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A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit

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  • Will start by making a case for the emotional as being at the heart of digital design for the library, and will follow up in my second talk with a survey of mostly free, off-the shelf tools you can use for your library. \nSome of what I say today will be supported by stats, some will be gut feeling. I am not a librarian by training...\n
  • but I am a product of libraries.\n
  • Library #1: Millville. I hung out here, played Dungeons and Dragons here, met the first girl I ever kissed here. (And the second, for that matter.) I don’t remember borrowing a lot of books. \n
  • Library #2: Mabel Smith Douglass. \n
  • Library #2: Mabel Smith Douglass. Lateral exploration, refuge. I don’t remember borrowing a lot of books.\n
  • Library #3: Bobst. Where I got serious, finished my BS and learned to do proper research. Didn’t love this library (intimidating and vertiginous).\n
  • Library #3: Bobst. Where I got serious, finished my BS and learned to do proper research. Didn’t love this library (intimidating and vertiginous).\n
  • Now I am at the NYPL, and I draw on those prior library experiences, which were very emotional in nature and don’t fit neatly in boxes (and certainly weren’t all about books).\n
  • My current job title is ^^ but I’m not thrilled about the title. \n
  • Not users. Patrons seems to be what we’re going with.\n
  • Not users. Patrons seems to be what we’re going with.\n
  • There’s no such thing as a Digital Patron. I work mainly on the web sites, but try to be as connected as possibly to real, analog people. \n
  • The digital and the physical are not distinct realms anymore. Especially not with the rise of smartphones. The future’s here and the average American has pretty well assimilated the web into their everyday life.\n
  • We already see the pattern.\n
  • What a nascent revolution looks like. And this is with little concession to mobile devices at all. (was 10x a few months ago)\n
  • This is the term we’ve been trying to use. So what does that mean in practical terms?\n
  • The digital metadata that surrounds library collections will serve as a means of surfacing the Great Underground Physical Beast that is the Library’s collections. Iceberg. Conversations can happen on the digital layer around the stuff. \n
  • We have enough stuff in the collections. What is important now is the EXPERIENCE of finding that stuff. That is our business.\n
  • \n
  • Apple iTunes is a great user experience. Defeated Napster/filesharing. About $7 billion in sales.\nThey are also a great brand.\n
  • And we are still in the business of giving people great stuff for free. I like that business model. That’s why I joined up.\n
  • We’re struggling to figure it out, but we’ve got company. Look around to see how people are dealing.\n
  • To figure out how libraries fit in, we need to know as much as possible about the people who keep us afloat, and why they bother to use libraries at all.\n
  • True, many students have to come to the library (especially in academic libraries), and...\n
  • ...there are some vital community services public libraries provide (internet access, service for the disabled, free classes, job placement, etc), BUT\n
  • For most patrons it’s actually a question of emotion.\n
  • For most patrons it’s actually a question of emotion.\n
  • \n
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  • \n
  • We catch our patrons using emotional language to refer to the library all the time. Dates. Betrayals. Renewed vows. (More on Twitter in a moment).\n
  • Here’s a little thought experiment. Let’s look at two visits to the Steven Schwarzman Building, aka “the library with the lions”. Or “the library from Ghostbusters”. \n
  • \n
  • \n
  • \n
  • (Mention Whyte/Paco connection)\n
  • \n
  • \n
  • \n
  • \n
  • \n
  • \n
  • This time, you’re 9 years old.\n
  • \n
  • \n
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  • \n
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  • (More on twitter in a moment)\n
  • Twitter, by the way, is great for getting tons of interesting feedback, both good...\n
  • ...and not so good\n
  • \n
  • Another great example of two emotional contexts.\n
  • \n
  • This is my thesis. The difference between just allowing access to a collection and really engaging people is one of emotion.\n
  • People show up here because they WANT to (we’re not like the DMV or the hospital ), It’s because we’re still a hell of a lot better than the alternatives (book stores, universities, etc)\n
  • Mid-Manhattan is an interesting case study.\n
  • Mid-Manhattan is the largest circulating library in New York City, taking up 5 floors of prime real estate on 5th Avenue\n
  • It sits on the opposite corner from the venerable Steven A. Schwarzman building, aka “the library with the lions”. NYPL is on a push to eliminate redundancies between circ and research, we were asked to analyze use of MML.\n
  • Among the staff, MML has a reputation as an underachiever, and maybe a bit run down.\n
  • We guessed that most people used Schwarzman and went across the street when the needed to borrow a book.\n
  • \n
  • When we looked at the audiences, it turned out that 2/3 of the audiences of each library NEVER crossed the street to go to the other.\n
  • We figured that MML patrons only patronized MML because it had circulating collections and other things that Schwarzman didn’t have.\n
  • \n
  • The big, fancy building can be a turn-off. The run-down building can be familiar and inviting. Think old jeans.\n
  • In fact, those circulating patrons who were in and out in a hurry were the MOST willing to switch.\n
  • \n
  • \n
  • The end result is that instead of future designs making MidManhattan more like Schwarzman, it will likely be the other way around.\n
  • OK, shifting gears. Here are a few little interesting things we learned. \n
  • We offered the survey in-person, on library computers, and on printed cards you could take home. This was the biggest difference between the three.\n
  • \n
  • And both wanted quiet space more. Students who come to the library are not representative of students as a whole. \n
  • Students? Youngsters? Science fiction fans?\n
  • \n
  • The physical/emotional connection is our lifeline. Two stats that fill me with optimism:\n
  • \n
  • \n
  • \n
  • \n
  • Many many people are FREAKED OUT by the pace of change. Librarians can be your guides helping you climb Everests of superabundant information. Everyone’s an archivist now. Explore new service models. Think Apple Genius Bar.\n
  • We need the physical. As more information comes our way through glowing rectangles, we CRAVE physical experiences. The Great Good Place, Ray Oldenburg\n
  • At our research libraries, we’re seeing a drop in physical general reference materials. But access to special collections is going UP, and we’ve NEVER had more people coming through the doors. Find the things that make YOUR library unique. (That might be your patrons or your staff, not your holdings).\n
  • You cannot create community, only enable it. NYC as world’s biggest collection of villages.\n
  • This is the direction the NYPL is trying to move. While utterly respecting privacy, we know that the value of our patrons as a latent social network is extremely valuable. \n
  • We don’t get to be passive any more and expect people to come to us. We need to engage and facilitate.\n
  • finally:\n
  • finally:\n
  • finally:\n
  • \n
  • \n
  • A Digital LIbrarian's Toolkit

    1. 1. A digital librarian’s toolkit Stuff We Use To Learn About Patrons at the New York Public Library Michael Lascarides Digital User Analyst, NYPL Presented to the Hawaii Library Association 5 November, 2010 twitter: @mlascarides, @nypl
    2. 2. DISCLAIMER: A digital librarian’s toolkit NOTTHE digital librarian’s toolkit
    3. 3. 12 Ways NYPL islistening to patrons
    4. 4. 12 Ways NYPL islistening to patrons(And you can too, for free!)
    5. 5. 1. Watch your patrons do stuff
    6. 6. “You can observe a lot by watching.” -- Yogi Berra
    7. 7. “Breaking the system and fixing the systemare two different jobs.”
    8. 8. 2. Look at what’s on every screen in your library
    9. 9. Instructions are signals of design failure Tip o’ the hat to William McDonough
    10. 10. Your patrons are not stupid
    11. 11. None of your patrons like to feel stupid
    12. 12. “If you have trouble with the concept of design humility, consider this: it took us 5,000 years to put wheels on our luggage.” William McDonough
    13. 13. 3. Send user feedback to your software vendors
    14. 14. 4. Google Analytics
    15. 15. 5. Decide what metricsmeasure your success
    16. 16. NYPL Digital Gallery 2009 Redesign
    17. 17. NYPL Digital Gallery 2009 Redesign • Pages Per Visit: 13 Down 26.09%
    18. 18. NYPL Digital Gallery 2009 Redesign • Pages Per Visit: 13 Down 26.09% • Average Time On Site: 5:11 Down 17.83%
    19. 19. Conclusion: Success!
    20. 20. NYPL Digital Gallery 2009 Redesign
    21. 21. NYPL Digital Gallery 2009 Redesign• Total Visits: 879,307 Up 62.5%
    22. 22. NYPL Digital Gallery 2009 Redesign• Total Visits: 879,307 Up 62.5%• Pageviews: 11.5M Up 20.2%
    23. 23. NYPL Digital Gallery 2009 Redesign• Total Visits: 879,307 Up 62.5%• Pageviews: 11.5M Up 20.2%• Traffic from Search Engines Up 34.5%
    24. 24. How long shoulda web visit be ?
    25. 25. 6. Twitter search
    26. 26. 7. Look for stories in your search terms
    27. 27. What’s the mostpopular search term on nypl.org?
    28. 28. [second level]
    29. 29. [pics]
    30. 30. 8. List things your patrons arepassionate about
    31. 31. (Ask your staff.They will know.)
    32. 32. a. Audienceb. Services c. Words
    33. 33. 9. Extend theconversation about those things
    34. 34. 9a. Blogs
    35. 35. Better relationships = more discovery
    36. 36. 9b. Social Networks
    37. 37. 9c. Wikipedia
    38. 38. 10. Steal an idea
    39. 39. Capitalize on the warm fuzzy feelings
    40. 40. 11. Play, especially withthe line between online and physical
    41. 41. 12. Infomaki
    42. 42. “I don’t like thebackground color.”
    43. 43. “We’ve done a double-blind, randomly sampled“I don’t like survey of 645 the patrons that showsbackground that 34.2% of our target demographic color.” prefers warmer tones over cooler hues.”
    44. 44. “We’ve done a double-blind, randomly sampled“I don’t like The survey of 645 the patrons that showsbackground Sweet that 34.2% of our color.” Spot target demographic prefers warmer tones over cooler hues.”
    45. 45. sourceforge.net/projects/infomaki labs.nypl.org
    46. 46. “Free, as in kittens.”
    47. 47. Results
    48. 48. • 231 questions
    49. 49. • 231 questions• 111,823 responses
    50. 50. • 231 questions• 111,823 responses• 10,203 respondents
    51. 51. • 231 questions• 111,823 responses• 10,203 respondents• 484 responses per question
    52. 52. • 231 questions• 111,823 responses• 10,203 respondents• 484 responses per question• 10.96 answers per session
    53. 53. “Support”
    54. 54. “Community”
    55. 55. “Apply”
    56. 56. Be surprised.
    57. 57. Thank You! Michael Lascarides Digital User Analyst, NYPLPresented to the Hawaii Library Association 5 November, 2010 twitter: @mlascarides, @nypl
    58. 58. Picture CreditsAll photos by Michael except for Rock Music vs. Oil Production, from:http://www.overthinkingit.com/2008/09/23/the-hubbert-peak-theory-of-rock-or-why-were-all-out-of-good-songs/NYPL Stuffhttp://nypl.orghttp://digitalgallery.nypl.orghttp://journal.code4lib.org/articles/2099 (Infomaki)Elsewherehttp://google.com/analyticshttp://twitter.comhttp://wikipedia.orghttp://facebook.comhttp://nyc.gov/apps/311http://vpl.ca (Vancouver Public Library)http://moma.orghttp://www.thisismymilwaukee.com/http://fourqsquare.comhttp://www.brooklynmuseum.org/opencollection/tag_game/start.php

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