Posted by: bluesyemre | July 23, 2019

The Librarian’s role as content creator by Barbi Gardiner

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Librarians, did you add content creator to your resume? If not, then you’d better make that change! Not sure if you can call yourself a content creator? Ask yourself a few simple questions to find out. Has your library work ever required that you do any of the following? Produce a pathfinder or a tip-sheet handout, written a book review, create a newsletter or blog specifically for patrons, create posts to share on social media? If your answer is yes, then you, my friend, are a bonafide content creator.

Some of you are wondering what the heck is content creation? Content creation is a content marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience. In this case, library patrons. Creating and delivering compelling content that library users find useful and relevant is an effective way to increase your value to customers.

Libraries have always tried to make it easy for patrons to interact with and understand libraries and materials. Today, though, we have evolved to incorporate more digital tools to discover better ways to deliver information. Libraries are now using digital platforms aimed at making information and resources easier to find and more engaging with patrons. Tools such as social media sitesvideo creation software, podcasts, and apps make it easier to share content and reach a wider audience.

Here are other ways libraries use content creation to increase value for patrons:

Videos

Libraries are utilizing the power of videos to reach their audience. Many libraries like the Otis Library in Norwich, CT even have their own YouTube channel. Library Tech Talk also has our own YouTube channel where we will showcase digital tools for librarians and how to use them. You can subscribe here.

Librarians in their role as content creators have many free tools at their disposal to help to make video creation a breeze. Many of these tools have templates aimed at making the creation process even easier. Below are two of our favorites.

iMovie (iOS) 

If you’re looking to edit video on an iPhone or iPadApple’s own app continues to be one of the easiest and best options. Simple touch controls contradict powerful tools for editing your clips together, before sharing them with your library’s community. Check out the video below as an example of the type of content you can create with this robust but simple app. To follow the step-by-step instructions, click here – includes the best places to find copyright free photos and video clips.

WeVideo 

WeVideo is an online, as well as app-based, video editor that makes it easy to quickly create stunning videos to preserve those library moments. It’s also a wonderfully simple toolfor creating great promotional videos to share on social media or upload to YouTube. Checkout the simple video below that was made using WeVideo and was created in under 30 minutes. To follow the simple step-by-step instructions to begin making your ownpromotional videos, click here.

Podcasts

Another way that librarians are becoming digital content creators is through podcasting. Some libraries are doing this by capturing the audio of programs by library hosts and sending them out via iTunes as a podcast. Other libraries create weekly or monthly podcast shows. For example, All Booked Up features truly funny librarians from Buffalo & Erie County Public Library who talk about books and movies. It’s a great way to discover what other people are reading and recommending.

Blog Posts

Blog posts are another great way to share library news or additions to your collections. A “what’s new” blog post is easy to write and can be as detailed as you want to make it. Weekly posts are a great way to share book-lists that link back to your library’s catalog. They are helpful at informing patrons about upcoming events. Share these posts across all of your social media platforms to increase exposure with your digitally connected patron base. What was once a one-on-one chat with a patron is transformed by the blog platform into content a large part of your library community can access.

Here’s one example: The Biblio File Blog at Otis Library in Norwich, CT focuses on library news, book-lists that link to their catalog, and detailed information on library services and collections.

Social Media

Chances are good that your library is on some kind of social media channels, right? My guess is that you’re sharing created content very day. Maybe you’ve shared a flyer to promote an event, a picture collage of a successful program, or a book trailer video. Honestly, the list could go on and on. The fact of the matter is, if you are the one creating this content to share, then you can definitely add the title “Content Creator” to your resume.

Below are a couple of examples of extremely engaging content that can be shared across social media platforms and has performed well with engaging and informing online patrons.

Infographics

Infographics are a brilliant way to inform patrons. People tend to be very visual and what could be more visually stimulating than an Infographic?

The Infographic below was created with the Free tool Pictochart and was shared on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. It was created to inform patrons of the DVD series that we carry.  This Infographic was also printed and displayed in the media area of the library where I work. It performed well on social media and received a record number of likes and comments.

Flyers & Posts

This graphic was created with my favorite Free graphic design software Canva.  We used this to promote one of our library’s services on social media.  Content creators can easily use Canva’s drag-and-drop feature and layouts to design, share and print business cards, logos, presentations, social media posts, and more. If your library is a registered 501c3, you can apply for the upgraded Canva account and receive all of the professional benefits for FREE.  With it you can create beautiful designs with your team.

https://librarytechtalk.com/content-creator/


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