The Nashville Public Library’s Main Branch brings in an array of students to the Teen Department including:
-Martin Luther King Magnet
-East Literature Magnet
-Big Picture [click the photo above for more Bus info!]
The Metropolitan Transit Authority makes bussing possible from all of these schools to downtown Nashville; these teens have many different choices for after-school programs or destinations, but they choose the downtown library.
I got the chance to chat with some of the teens a few weeks ago about how they feel about social media, specifically relating to the library.
What Teens Think
One Hunter’s Lane student and ROTC leader explained his love for Facebook:
“It’s a different way to talk to people outside of school.”
A McGavock student commented that Facebook interaction would be great with the library to share pictures and increase “library exposure.” If the Teen Department had a Twitter account, he would definitely follow them in order to keep up with events.
Events like the ones documented on the nplmainya’s flickr (for example, the summer reading party to the left) could potentially go unnoticed without social media interaction.
Another student mentioned that Facebook would connect everyone for contests more easily, making them easier to know about; she would also like to be able to keep up with events in this way, as she has missed too many for her liking.
However, concerning Twitter, she exclaimed:
“NO! I DON’T WANT TO FOLLOW THE LIBRARY!”
[This feeling relates back to James’ point of what the library has to offer the teens.]
Finally, one well-spoken Senior from Cane Ridge explained his view to me; for the library’s purposes, he believes that Facebook is better, as it would offer more information, but he would still follow the Teen Department on Twitter.
At Cane Ridge, though, he asserted, “Most people are on Twitter; they do it in class on their phones because it is easier than Facebook.”
What It Comes Down To
Like James mentioned in his interview, the YA department’s social media presence should be about functionality.
The teens, though, seem very optimistic about using social media in order to connect with their library.
The Problem & What’s Next
Advertising, or getting the word out, about the YA Department’s social media efforts is key, but with time resources limited, devotion to the social media platform is limited at best.
The final installment of this series will present some ideas for improvement!