Module 2.5: Why use social media?

All Things Library 

Social media allows us to connect to people, hence, in my school library I should be using it to connect to my school community. Am I doing this? No I am not! So what will I do about it?

First step is to learn how to use social media to network with my school community. Currently I get messages out and about by making announcement on the school assemblies, posting on the daily notices, and sending emails. Put simply, in this day and age it is not good enough, in my opinion! I need to create a participatory environment for my library where the school community can connect through collaborating, sharing and having conversations about all things “library”.

Andy Burkhardt (2009), identified 4 reasons why libraries should be on social media. I have summarised how his reasons resonate with me.

  1. Communication: Kids don’t log on and use their emails as we adults do, therefore to reach them anytime-anywhere we need to jump aboard the social media platforms such as Facebook, Instant messaging and/or SMS.
  2. Responding to positive and negative feedback is of paramount importance. We need to show we care and hear what our library users’ say. How? Listen to what they say and respond to it by offering assistance, thanking them for their praise, and be transparent in the process.
  3. Marketing and advertising: Utilising social media as a marketing and advertising tool is cheap, well it’s free actually. 1.6 billion (at last count) use Facebook, so I would guess many if not most of my school community would have a Facebook account. I need to branch out and not only announce library news in the traditional ways, but also use social media to connect to more of my school community.
  4. Understanding users’ better can be achieved through having conversations, in person or through social media. Through these conversations important insights can be discovered, such as: reading preferences of students; or, how the library space can be better used to facilitate the teaching style of a teacher. Having conversations (talking to people) allows positive relationships to develop which leads to serving the school community better, which is something we all want.

I loved the short, crisp video by Anali Perry (2011), The library minute: The social connection, very cool.

I’m not sure I have the confidence to post a video starring myself for all to see as a means to extract the wants and needs from my library users’…..then again I can entice a drama teacher, or better still a student to play the part, mmm…not a bad idea.


Burkhardt, A. (2009, August 25). Four reasons libraries should be on

social media. Retrieved November 14, 2016, from

King, D. L. (2015). Why Use Social Media?. Library Technology

Reports51(1), 6-9.

Arizona State University, Tempe Campus (2011, April 15). The

library minute: The social connection Retrieved from


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