Rochdale library service on t’interweb

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A rather jam-packed workshop presentation for library staff taking over my web-related work later this year.

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Rochdale library service on t’interweb

  1. 1. Rochdale Library Service on t’Interweb Quick overview and notes for Library Service staff. S.A.Heywood February 2011
  2. 2. General principles <ul><li>We have three main channels: </li></ul><ul><li>The RMBC web site </li></ul><ul><li>Social networking and other “Web 2.0” services </li></ul><ul><li>The web catalogue and its associated portal functions </li></ul><ul><li>(not covered here because this is going to change radically when we buy a new LMS.) </li></ul>
  3. 3. Web site principles: Pages (1) <ul><li>Three-column format: </li></ul><ul><li>The left-hand column is the taxonomy — simple cladistic family tree. </li></ul><ul><li>The right-hand column is for contacts and further information. </li></ul><ul><li>The central column is the true content of the page. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Web site principles: Pages (2) <ul><li>The left-hand column shows the hierarchy of the whole RMBC web site. </li></ul><ul><li>It isn’t often you’ll be creating a new branch to the family tree so it’s mostly irrelevant for everyday web authoring. </li></ul><ul><li>So long as each individual web page has appropriate links in appropriate launch pages it doesn’t much matter where it lives. </li></ul><ul><li>The hierarchy becomes useful when you’re doing clever things with news articles. </li></ul>
  5. 5. Web site principles: Pages (3) <ul><li>The right-hand column is for links and further information: </li></ul><ul><li>Contact details </li></ul><ul><li>Links to more information </li></ul><ul><li>“More news” — news feeds from the Library news pages </li></ul><ul><li>Some eye candy if appropriate </li></ul>
  6. 6. Web site principles: Pages (4) <ul><li>Three types of main content: </li></ul><ul><li>Static pages </li></ul><ul><li>News aggregating pages </li></ul><ul><li>News items </li></ul>
  7. 7. Web site principles: Static pages <ul><li>Essentially, pages that are fixtures. </li></ul><ul><li>“Brochure” pages for the services involved. </li></ul><ul><li>Can be made to look dynamic by changing pictures periodically. </li></ul><ul><li>Can be made dynamic by embedding news content. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Web site principles: News aggregating pages <ul><li>Pages anchored in the hierarchy, the same as static pages, but dynamic content. </li></ul><ul><li>May have some introductory text at the top. </li></ul><ul><li>Mostly, if not completely, made up of news items automatically fed to the page in chronological order. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Web site principles: News items <ul><li>Essentially, small time-limited static pages. </li></ul><ul><li>A news item, literally. </li></ul><ul><li>Page set up so that it becomes part of the news feed. </li></ul><ul><li>The news page it feeds is dependent on the “mother” page and that news page’s feed settings. </li></ul>
  10. 10. Web site principles: Authoring (1) <ul><li>Some general rules: </li></ul><ul><li>Try not to be more than 1½ screens long. </li></ul><ul><li>Make sure your main message is in the first paragraph. </li></ul><ul><li>Use active language. Passive language is not to be used. </li></ul><ul><li>Corporate style sheet! </li></ul><ul><li>Use Wordle.org to test if the message you’re giving is the one you want to say. </li></ul>
  11. 11. Web site principles: Authoring (2) <ul><li>Some general rules: </li></ul><ul><li>Links are good: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Links within the web site increase the “stickiness” of visits, which is A Good Thing. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>External links improve the chances of search engines’ finding the page. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>There is a tension between providing a good selection of useful links and confusing or intimidating the reader. </li></ul>
  12. 12. Web site principles: Navigation <ul><li>If the reader has to depend on the taxonomy in the left-hand column to find your page then you’ve failed. </li></ul><ul><li>The start point for all information about library services is www.rochdale.gov.uk/libraries — wherever the pages actually live . </li></ul><ul><li>The reader should do no more than 3 click-throughs to get to what they want. </li></ul>
  13. 13. Web site principles: Links <ul><li>Links </li></ul><ul><li>Links are good, remember? </li></ul><ul><li>Prioritise what people will be looking for. (This isn’t necessarily the currently-most-viewed, those pages may just be the most findable, not the most useful.) </li></ul>
  14. 14. Web site principles: Discovery (1) <ul><li>It’s no use if people can’t find it. </li></ul><ul><li>Links and navigation, as above. </li></ul><ul><li>Metadata and tagging for to be found in search results. </li></ul><ul><li>Share the links to this page, not to “somewhere on the web site.” </li></ul>
  15. 15. Web site principles: Discovery (2) <ul><li>It’s no use if people can’t find it. </li></ul><ul><li>Search engines </li></ul><ul><li>Links in press releases, publicity, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Shared links in social networking and other Web 2.0 sites. </li></ul>
  16. 16. News items: general principal RMBC Home Library Service Home Page Static with embedded news feed Daughter page Static Library news page Static with embedded news feed News item 1 News item 2 News item 3 News item 4 News item 5 Daughter page Static Daughter page Static
  17. 17. News items: being creative RMBC Home Library Service Home Page Static with embedded news feed Daughter page Static Library news page Static with embedded news feed News item 1 News item 4 Daughter page Static with embedded news feed Daughter page Static with embedded news feed News item 2 News item 5 News item 3
  18. 18. News items: sharing content Library Home Page Library News Page RMBC News Page Library “ daughter” Page Library News Archive Page Social networking sites e.g. Facebook, Twitter External news feeds and personal desktops, e.g. Netvibes Library News Article News media
  19. 19. Social networking principles (1) <ul><li>The definitive source of information about our library services has to be the library web site. </li></ul><ul><li>Social networking sites need to link to the library web site. </li></ul><ul><li>Posts need to link to the library web site wherever possible and appropriate. </li></ul>
  20. 20. Social networking principles (2) <ul><li>Know your social media. </li></ul><ul><li>23 Things should be a requirement of library web authors and e-learning staff. </li></ul><ul><li>Apply the appropriate message to the appropriate medium. One size definitely doesn’t fit all! </li></ul>
  21. 21. Social networking principles (3) <ul><li>One post = one event; one event = some posts. </li></ul><ul><li>Link to individual news items and events rather than to aggregating pages. </li></ul><ul><li>Select snippets to share. </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid undue or inappropriate repetition and spamming. </li></ul>
  22. 22. Social networking principles (4) <ul><li>This is all about the library brand </li></ul><ul><li>Be professional </li></ul><ul><li>Be knowledgeable </li></ul><ul><li>Be positive </li></ul><ul><li>Smile! </li></ul>
  23. 23. Social networking principles (5) <ul><li>This is all about people </li></ul><ul><li>Be human </li></ul><ul><li>Be friendly </li></ul><ul><li>Be approachable </li></ul><ul><li>Share! </li></ul>
  24. 24. Social networking principles (6) <ul><li>Share, share, share! </li></ul><ul><li>Be selective — share what may be useful to your audience. </li></ul><ul><li>Try to share messages from RMBC — most will be useful to your audience. </li></ul><ul><li>Try to share most government messages — most will be useful to some of your audience. </li></ul><ul><li>Share positive feedback and say thank you. </li></ul><ul><li>If someone likes/reviews a title/author we have in stock, share it and, if possible, include a link to the catalogue. </li></ul><ul><li>“ Like” nice news and positive feedback. </li></ul>
  25. 25. Social networking principles (7) <ul><li>In short… </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Follow </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Friend </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Like </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Share </li></ul></ul></ul>
  26. 26. Social networking works <ul><li>No point in tweeting? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>http://ukwebfocus.wordpress.com/2011/02/01/assessing-the-value-of-a-tweet/ </li></ul></ul>
  27. 27. Case study: events management <ul><li>Marketing and managing for success: </li></ul><ul><li>Justifying doing it in the first place. </li></ul><ul><li>Demonstrating the return on the investment. </li></ul><ul><li>Evidencing the return on the investment. </li></ul><ul><li>Marketing the event doesn’t finish when the event does. </li></ul><ul><li>Managing the event doesn’t finish when the event does. </li></ul>
  28. 28. Case study: events management <ul><li>We’re not marketing the event, we’re marketing the product: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The service </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The library </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The project </li></ul></ul></ul>
  29. 29. Case study: events management <ul><li>All the individual events link together to create a single narrative for to market the service. </li></ul><ul><li>Events must not be isolated incidents. </li></ul>
  30. 30. Case study: events management <ul><li>Pre-publicity </li></ul><ul><li>Create a news item to let people know about the event. </li></ul><ul><li>Depending on the theme/location you may want to use a themed page as the “mother,” otherwise create on the Library News Page. </li></ul><ul><li>Share the published page with social media. </li></ul>
  31. 31. Case study: events management <ul><li>Contemporaneous marketing </li></ul><ul><li>Take photographs </li></ul><ul><li>Make videos/podcasts </li></ul><ul><li>Set up a hashtag for tweets </li></ul><ul><li>Think about how you’re going to re-use these resources </li></ul>
  32. 32. Case study: events management <ul><li>Contemporaneous marketing </li></ul><ul><li>Share photographs, information, thoughts and impressions on social media </li></ul><ul><li>Encourage participants’ sharing photographs, thoughts and impressions </li></ul>
  33. 33. Case study: events management <ul><li>After the event… </li></ul><ul><li>News item on the success of the event. </li></ul><ul><li>Share the published page with social media. </li></ul><ul><li>Re-use the contemporary resources. </li></ul>
  34. 34. Case study: events management <ul><li>Re-using contemporary resources after the event… </li></ul><ul><li>Reviews and reports </li></ul><ul><li>Shared photo albums </li></ul><ul><li>Shared audio-visual resources </li></ul>
  35. 35. Case study: events management <ul><li>Retrieving the event resources </li></ul><ul><li>We need to show that we do more than stamp books and go “shush.” </li></ul><ul><li>We need to demonstrate the return on the investment in the event. </li></ul><ul><li>We need to celebrate achievement. </li></ul><ul><li>If we can do something once and resources allow we might do it again if somebody asks for it. </li></ul><ul><li>If we don’t show that we do it, people won’t know we can do it. </li></ul>

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