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Successful Social Networking in Public Libraries
Walt Crawford
Item Number: 978-0-8389-1167-9
Publisher: ALA Editions
Price: $59.00
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176 pages
7" x 10"
ISBN-13: 978-0-8389-1167-9
Year Published: 2014
AP Categories: A, B, C, D, Z

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Most commentaries to date on library use of social networks such as Facebook and Twitter have focused on a handful of well-funded public libraries with high-profile employees.  Now Crawford’s Successful Social Networking in Public Libraries fills in the rest of the picture, offering for the first time an in-depth look at how a large variety of public libraries are using social networks. Examining nearly 6,000 libraries across the US, Crawford
  • Analyzes social network usage by libraries of many different sizes and funding levels, showing how many of them are active and effective in quite different ways
  • Offers many examples that will help other libraries establish or refine their own social networking activities
  • Lays out several key questions that libraries should ask themselves, such as “Who do we want to reach?” and “What’s the best way to interact with communities?”
  • Gives libraries guidelines for setting social networking goals and conducting ongoing evaluation
  • Includes illuminating comments from numerous librarians on the front lines of communication
Based on broad research, Crawford draws a vivid portrait that shows how a wide range of public libraries is conducting digital outreach and marketing through social networking.
Table of Contents


Chapter 1
Social Networking in Public Libraries

Chapter 2
What Constitutes Success in Your Library?

Chapter 3
The Big Picture and the Smaller Picture

Chapter 4
Facebook Success and Strategies

Chapter 5
Twitter and Two-Network Success and Strategies

Chapter 6
Finding the Libraries and Other Issues of the Survey

Chapter 7
State-by-State Snapshots

Chapter 8
The Changing Picture and Closing Thoughts

Appendix: Surveying the Libraries

About the Author

Walt Crawford is an internationally recognized writer and speaker on libraries, technology, policy and media. Author of numerous books, articles, and columns, Crawford is also the creator, writer and publisher of Cites & Insights: Crawford at Large, an ejournal on the intersections of libraries, policy, technology and media published monthly since 2001. He maintains a blog on these and other issues, Walt at Random. He received the LITA/Library Hi Tech Award for Outstanding Communication for Continuing Education in Library and Information Science in 1995, the ALCTS/Blackwell Scholarship Award in 1997, and the Gale Group Online Excellence in Information Authorship Award in 1998.

"Those who are looking to improve upon their social-networking status or start from scratch will find much of use here. With 38 states represented and libraries of all sizes examined, the information and examples found here make a useful resource on libraries and social media."
— Booklist

"Each library is encouraged to define success on its own terms ... A useful reference tool for smaller libraries looking for easy-to-implement social media guidance."

”This book is very detail heavy and offers a comprehensive guide for libraries beginning to explore social media. Although it is focused primarily for public libraries, other libraries wishing to create a social media presence can draw ideas from this book. "
— Catholic Library World

”The examples show successful posts, loaded with humor, invitations, anecdotes, and questions. A chapter on state-by-state findings helps benchmarking among comparable-sized libraries. Crawford’s survey helps answer questions such as: Should libraries devote staff time to social media activities? Can they sustain these activities and engage their communities effectively? Do their patrons expect to see them in these media channels? The survey viewed social media as actual engagement, something beyond simply another publication channel. Some best practice issues are raised, including how frequently to post, how to deal with spam, and how to pull the plug if it is just not working. The take-away lesson here is that libraries of all sizes can have vibrant and engaging social network presences."
— Reference & User Services Quarterly

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Item Number:  978-0-8389-1160-0
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Open Access: What You Need to Know Now
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In this ALA Editions Special Report, Crawford helps readers understand what Open Access is (and isn’t).
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Bite-Sized Marketing: Realistic Solutions for the Overworked Librarian
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