Investigating the Facebook Generation: A Case Study on the Nashville Library’s YA Social Media Tactics—Part I

How is the Nashville Library’s YA Department functioning now?

One of the most important aspects of social media analysis is research; this is where my investigation began. Currently, the YA department of the NPL does hold accounts in the social media world.

On the welcome desk in the teen section, the librarians openly give out these little cards (pictured) with all of the YA social media information on them.

According to the web addresses on the card, the YA department should be keeping up a Myspace, Facebook page, Flickr, and blog.

Twitter is surprisingly absent.

[As a side note, this card looks strangely similar to, if not exactly the same as, those given out around 2007.]

So here’s a basic snapshot of the YA section’s current social media:

1. Where’s Twitter?

Currently, the NPL YA Department does not have its own twitter account. 

NPL itself has an account, but the YA department seems absent. After looking through these tweets, there doesn’t seem to be engagement with the teen age group either.

[The interview with James in Part 3 will shed more light on this problem.]

2. What’s up, Myspace? Is it 2002?

The social media info card lists Myspace first; this, I must say, is a tad disappointing. Are teens still using this site?

Regardless, when visiting the page, we get this:

I’ve checked out this web address routinely for the past two weeks, and unfortunately, there’s not much to talk about.

3. Good effort, Facebook!

With 160 “likes” on the NPL Teen Facebook page, the librarians that keep it up are doing a pretty good job! It is updated fairly often and utilized for contests as well.

[They’re using Hootsuite also! Kudos!]

4. Forgetting about Flickr?

The last photos to be uploaded to this account on Flickr are from October of 2009.

There is some great content there, but if it’s stagnant or obsolete, why advertise it on the cards?

5. Blooming Blog

NPL’s Teen Blog seems like the main focus of the YA Department’s Social Media energy.

According to the web page, NPL YA librarians from across Middle TN contribute to writing YA book reviews for the blog.

This is also an opportunity for teens to submit their own reviews for an opportunity to be published, but they don’t get very many submissions.

Is this because the teens don’t know about it or because of lack of interest?


Summing Up the Current Situation:

The YA department is doing some things right, but there is obvious room for improvement; the library is an incredible tool that needs to connect with this generation of social media junkies.

What’s happening next?

The YA department in Nashville does have some plans, but they also have some opinions on the use of social media.

[Part II and III will give some insight into the minds of the YA librarians!]

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