Investigating the Facebook Generation: A Case Study on the Nashville Library’s YA Social Media Tactics–Introduction

In trying to decide on a topic for exploration for my Social Media and PR class, I finally landed on an idea that was close to my heart—the YA, or Teen, department of the Nashville Downtown Library.

I spent all of my afternoons in high school walking the short 2 blocks from my antediluvian school building to the library; in a herd of my friends, we spent hours in the study rooms there and even participated in the Teen Library Council (see photo below) that helped plan events and make suggestions for the department.

At the time, between 2005 and 2009, though, we never really utilized social media, although we were all heavily addicted to Facebook.

It’s a strange, nostalgic experience to reflect on high school happenings, especially as a Junior in college; however, the library was a great inspiration that kept me on the right path to success in planning my education and career.

This personal connection inspired me to take a look into the Young Adult social media strategy at the Nashville Downtown Library.

This post functions as an introduction to a five-part exposé and analysis of the Teen Department’s use of social media.

1. First, I’ll explain how YA social media is functioning now.

2.Second, I’ll be relaying an interview with Lisa Schutt, a YA librarian at the Downtown Branch.

3. Shortly following, I’ll present an interview with James McClanahan, the Teen Program Coordinator.

4. Then I will be posting and analyzing the interviews with some core patrons—the teens!

5. Finally, I will be giving my own suggestions for a social media strategy, or at the very least, some concepts to consider.

Stay tuned over this next week for some thought-provoking reading about the next generation’s use of social media and the true function of our precious libraries as a whole!

Do you know the true function of a YA department? What are teens using it for? How are librarians staying connected with them?
Keep updated with

“Investigating the Facebook Generation: A Case Study on the Nashville Library’s YA Social Media Tactics.”


Mixing Discourses: A PR Sestina

In my Introduction to Public Relations class, we had the opportunity to perform a creative project for a little extra credit. I’m always looking for ways to combine my two fields of study. So what did I do? I used a complex poetic structure called a sestina to tell a public relations story!

 

 

Corporate Department Spends Work Day Giving Back: A Sestina

Written by Hannah Baggott

 

 

The publicity

would be glorious, but she never

thought twice about the

coverage, the money. She tried to remember: “Do

it for

the right reason. Do it.

 

 

Do it

for the common good, the human condition, not the publicity.”

On her desk sat the forms for

the company volunteer day. She had never

thought to do

this on her own, but she saw their competitors quickly jumping on the bandwagon; the

 

 

date was set and the

t-shirts made up. It

had been researched and planned. Now it was time to do.

She notified the press, as her boss instructed. Publicity,

was, of course, necessary, and she never

expected this to be…enjoyable. Finally, it was time for

 

 

them to leave their screens behind for

something different, something good. The

cameras flashed; they never

expected it

to be enjoyable; it was just for publicity.

Without realizing the effect of what they were about to do,

 

 

they walked through unfamiliar doors to see a few dozen pairs of hopeful eyes. What could they do?

No one can deny a lonely puppy. The suited men and women smiled for

miles, and they forgot all about the publicity.

Shedding their jackets, forty hands fluffed the

warm fur of those grateful little things, and it

never occurred to the human eyes to glance at the clock…never.

 

 

Never

do

it

for

the

publicity.

 

 

Publicity is never

as important as the good one can do

for the community. Embrace it.


Finding A Voice

 

The world of social media can be extremely complicated and overwhelming; there are too many tools to try and topics to explore.

 

What makes using social media worthwhile, though, is first finding your voice, but then building and maintaining it.

 

PR people: sound familiar?

 

Finding a voice, a focus, online is an important step, but once it’s found, what do you do with it?

 

Keep working at it! Build it! Maintain it! Change things up if you need to! Improve!

 

I know that after my Social Media class ends, I will still be trying to keep up this blog, but I know that I’ll be making changes by working on my voice.

 

Sometimes experimenting with new topics is incredibly motivating, especially when responses are strong! However, other times, words may remain stagnant, unseen in this giant vortex that we call the Internet.

 

The only things that any writer can do are to keep writing and developing, but also spreading the word that their thoughts are out there!

 

Find a voice. Build that voice. Maintain it.

 

 

 


Where’s the engagement, Cheekwood?

Let me preface this post by saying that I am a great fan of Cheekwood Botanical Gardens and Museum of Art; however, after auditing the organization’s social media “buzz” and online presence for a few weeks, I am somewhat shocked!

For an organization that relies on donations and community support, Cheekwood’s engagement with the online public leaves much to be desired.

Although Cheekwood keeps up a Twitter account and Facebook page, they tend to broadcast rather than interact.

Regardless of the positive or negative feedback, there was not much of a response from the organization. As far as monitoring goes, I question Cheekwood’s attention to its online audience.

As of November 20, 2011, Cheekwood’s Klout score is 36, which I realize isn’t the most reliable analysis (Cheekwood has yet to actually sign up with Klout); regardless, this score seems insufficient for an organization that relies on the public.

Cheekwood’s website doesn’t even allow for public comments; the “Critic’s Corner” there is simply a collection of “favorite” comments. This lack of engagement and interaction cuts off feedback lines.

Within this time period that I monitored, news releases and twitter chatter discussed Cheekwood’s monetary problems and price increases. The organization itself has yet to actually release anything about it on its website, nor are there updated public financial records, the last update being from 2008.

Cheekwood is a beautiful, local organization that deserves public support and positive publicity, but without proper online interaction, the only engagement Cheekwood has is the engagement photography opportunities in the gardens.

Full Report: Social Media Audit Cheekwood

Cheekwood Audit Appendix


Preparing for Professionalism: A Personal Note with Universal Connections

As I waited anxiously (or “manning the battle stations” as another student worded it) for registration to open this morning for the spring of 2012, I realized how close I am to completing my degree.

 

One more year…

 

As an English Literature Major, I’ve already experienced reading, writing, and making deductions; I’m comfortable with that.

 

However, since I just started working on my PR minor this year, I was afraid that my passion for reading and personal connections wouldn’t transfer to the PR world.

 

To my surprise, I recently read an article that confirmed my life choice entitled “Do liberal arts students make better PR pros?” on Ragan.com.

 

To all the liberal arts students that think they’ll never be able to find a job because of studying the subject they love, take heart! Have hope!

Public relations is a great profession to apply those critical thinking skills to!

 

So with a combination of:

-World Literature

-Modern Poetry

-The Comparative Epic

-PR Writing & Production

-Basic Newswriting

and an internship, I’m excited to become a well-prepared professional by December 2012.

 

PR is truly a versatile profession!


Hootsuite: Exemplary PR

As you may have read previously, I did a little post on Hootsuite a few weeks ago; just for my analysis, I was promised a #hootkit from the company!

I received a piece of mail yesterday from Canada, which was incredibly exciting in itself; the envelope was stamped with the Hootsuite owl emblems, creating a whimsy of delight for me.

Inside I found stickers, a temporary tattoo, a button, and a thank-you note.

I am extremely impressed with Hootsuite’s positive response!

Even though one may question the purpose of these simple little items, it gives the company major brownie points, or Klout, per say.

The company monitors through @Hootwatch on Twitter; if Hootsuite is using its own program in order to monitor feedback on the company, then I’d have to make the assumption that success is eminent for the dashboard!

Hootsuite is definitely on the right track in the Public Relations department; through monitoring feedback, they perpetuate relationships with their costumers.

Kudos, Hootsuite!


The Belmont Vision: An Exploration of Culture

I got the opportunity to be interviewed by journalist Hannah Hyde for an article in the Belmont Vision about El Día de los Muertos.

Cheekwood Botanical Gardens always puts on a wonderful event for the Latin American holiday.

I always love being able to express my joy in seeing the event come together.

Read Day of the Dead festivities blend cultures!