Attracting Young Readers to the Library

Baker & Taylor college library shoot 4/11/14.

Research shows that more young people are visiting the library. In 2016, the Pew Research Center found that 53% of Millennials (those aged 18 to 35 at the time) reported using a library or bookmobile in the previous 12 months. That compares with 45% of Gen Xers, 43% of Baby Boomers and 36% of those in the Silent Generation. The survey focused specifically on public libraries.

It’s exciting news for libraries. But more work remains left to be done, particularly with reaching out to potential patrons who don’t use the library. At least, not yet. How do we encourage these younger readers to return again and again?

Innovate your offerings.

In addition to discovering titles and authors, patrons can find a wealth of new offerings.

For example:

Go outside the library.

In addition to serving patrons who already visit the library, it is imperative that public library systems reach out to those who don’t even come through the door.

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One way is to use a Pop Up Library, such as that available from Baker & Taylor, because it lets the library take programming to a captive audience. Pop Up Library is a small network device with one dedicated purpose—to instantly deliver ebooks to readers wherever libraries choose. Libraries that use Pop Up Library are able to extend the reach of their digital collection across the community so material is accessible to all. Click here to watch the promo video  and learn more! 

#Libraries! 

Smart library systems are harnessing social media to attract new audiences. Think Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram just to start.

Social media helps libraries to tell their system’s unique story, and explain the value they are providing in a more consistent voice. YouTube, for example is a great place to share library experiences.  View The New York Public Library’s YouTube channel to see what they are doing.  Online chat features can connect patrons with librarians who can not only provide information but help build a relationship.

Turn new visitors into repeat ones.

CHQ-Logo_COLOR_WHITE-BACKGROUNDNew programming and outreach may bring more visitors into the library, but equally important is getting these newcomers to register with the library and return. collectionHQ’s Experimental Placement can help. This tool helps libraries track how well special displays and collections are resonating with patrons to inform shelving and content placement to better enhance the patron’s experience.

“I’m a big fan of studying the demographics and the sociographics of the culture of a community,” explains Amandeep Kochar, Executive Vice President – Sales, Product Management, Services and Technology Ops at Baker & Taylor. “As that is changing, and changing very actively, I think the task of attracting people to the library, particularly younger people, is becoming more difficult as the fabric of society changes. Oftentimes, the library needs tools in order to promote their services and tell their stories because they are fighting for the same eyeballs as some of the big corporations out there. And the library has to be equipped with the tools to effectively compete for the time from the current generation and the upcoming generation.”

Want to learn more? Visit collectionHQ’s website at collectionhq.com

 

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Visit Us at ALA Annual! Booth # 2333

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No rest for the bookish during trade show season. ALA Annual is on the horizon and being hosted this year in our nation’s capitol, Washington D.C. starting June 21, – June 24. Visit our ALA Campaign Headquarters at Booth #2333 to explore and experience all of our Baker & Taylor campaign fun. We are proud to be Believers in Books and Leaders in Literacy as we have remained dedicated to supporting librarians to lead the future of literacy and learning since 1828.  

We have a jam-packed exciting schedule lined up with several author signings and booth activities including a coffee bar, popcorn station, photo booth and cat mascot photos with our beloved Baker and Taylor. And if that isn’t enough to get you in the spirit, you must stop by and pick up your special edition commemorative giveaways to celebrate this occasion. For further details and our complete ALA schedule, we are happy to have a dedicated website to keep you up to date with all our happenings during the show. We can’t wait too see you there!

Don’t miss out, visit the ALA site now!

 

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ESP by Baker & Taylor- Future-Proofing Libraries With Data

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Consumers these days can do almost anything with a click of a mouse or a tap on a screen. Goods can be bought and delivered within hours. New products can be easily browsed. And online advertising seems to magically target its ideal audience, connecting customers with items matching their needs and wants.

This easy and instant access to goods and information is changing consumer expectations and could threaten our more established institutions, notably libraries. With budget constraints and limited resources, libraries can’t be expected to invest millions in research and development, experiment with unproven gadgets, or compete with the tech giants driving these changes. While technology presents a threat, however, it also offers solutions for ensuring libraries remain relevant and essential parts of our communities. One tool that can help ensure a library’s longevity is what’s known as big data.

Continue reading “ESP by Baker & Taylor- Future-Proofing Libraries With Data”

Case Study – Adding Life to Collections With collectionHQ and ESP

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BACKGROUND

Evidence-based Selection Planning (ESP) offers a decision support system to
help libraries select current and pre-published titles in the right quantities to
the right locations.

Atlanta-Fulton Public Library System, GA is a 34 branch system serving
a population of more than 1,000,000. Shortly after he was appointed as
Executive Director at the library, Dr Gabriel Morley made the decision to
introduce Evidence-based Selection Planning (ESP) to support more informed
selection decisions.

THE CHALLENGE

Introduction of the collectionHQ Dashboard in 2014 offered new insight into the library’s
collection that shocked Gabriel and the team. Gabriel explained: “We had been looking at our circulation statistics over a long period of time in order to better understand the needs of our patrons. What we found was disturbing. Almost 53% of our collection was Dead on Arrival, which meant it rarely circulated.” Dead on Arrival (DOA) is a metric that reveals new items added to a library’s collection within the last 6-18 months that have either never circulated or had been checked out only once. This revelation therefore prompted the team to take action.

Continue reading “Case Study – Adding Life to Collections With collectionHQ and ESP”

Baker & Taylor Offers Libraries Career Skill-Building Courses

PF LogoNew career skills training courses within the Axis 360 digital platform provides library patrons access to invaluable career training. Baker & Taylor’s online courses, powered by Penn Foster, prepare online learners for in-demand jobs and ensure industry advancement and career mobility.

The career field has changed in America—digital skills are in high demand and computer literacy is necessary. For more than 128 years, Penn Foster, an accredited online school, has empowered millions of students with the skills and confidence they need to succeed in the workplace of today. These courses are an extension of that mission, and a way for libraries to offer patrons more.

Mid-Continent Public Library is one of the first customers to launch the program within their library system, which reaches more than 800,000 citizens in the Greater Kansas City area. “Library customers are increasingly turning to the library as a resource to ‘upskill’ and gain the tools to compete in the ever-changing economy,” said Steven V. Potter, executive director of Mid-Continent.

Libraries play a critical role in fostering a community of lifelong learners, and Baker & Taylor helps libraries achieve greater engagement through programs like this. “As our customers increasingly pursue self-driven employment opportunities, including gig economy work and even traditional skilled labor expertise,” Potter added, “this new partnership will provide unprecedented access to mobile-friendly, self-paced learning opportunities designed for working learners and focused on today’s most in-demand skills.”

These courses, provided on the Axis 360 digital platform (also home to ebooks and audiobooks), are self-paced and designed for nontraditional learners; they include digital literacy, career-oriented math, and adult literacy, and offer more than 700 full-time proctors, teaching assistants and academic coaches.

“By helping public libraries provide seamless access to skills training for the most in-demand jobs, we are creating new opportunities for career mobility that can be accessed by the individuals who need it most,” said Amandeep Kochar, executive vice president of Public Library Sales and Technology at Baker & Taylor. “One of the primary goals of our library partners is to help patrons succeed in their careers by fostering an environment of lifelong learning.”

We’re excited to work with you! For more information contact your sales consultant, email btinfo@baker-taylor.com or call 800-775-1800.

 

Pop Up Libraries Create Easy Access and Deliver Digital Reading Anywhere

bandt-0354 pop up library logo cmykOne book has the power to positively change someone’s life. Now imagine hundreds of books, delivered to readers anywhere with no barriers. That’s the power of Pop Up Library, Baker & Taylor’s newest tools for getting more books to more readers.

Pop Up Library is a small network device with one dedicated purpose—to instantly deliver ebooks to readers wherever libraries choose. Libraries that use Pop Up Library are able to extend the reach of their digital collection across the community so material is accessible to all. By working with community partners, businesses, government offices, and more, Pop Up Library creates a space for readers anywhere.

“This is brand new technology in the library market space,” says Michael Bills, director of sales and marketing for Baker & Taylor’s digital products. “Every library wants to engage with more of their community, but libraries don’t have limitless funding. Pop Up Library is a low cost way to achieve greater engagement and create a larger presence in a library’s community.”

For years, libraries have come up with inventive ideas to reach more individuals within their communities. Bookmobiles, temporary branch locations, and book vending machines have all been employed with great success, but each requires significant capital investment. No other remote library program is as affordable and spotlights a library’s digital collection quite like Pop Up Library.

A group of libraries around the world worked with Baker & Taylor as early adopters of the Pop Up Library program, including Atlanta-Fulton County, Broward County, and Evanston Public Library. Baker & Taylor officially launched the Pop Up Library program at the ALA’s Midwinter Conference in Seattle this January, and demand from libraries everywhere was immediate.

“One of the reasons we’re a 200-year-old company is that we listen to the customers we serve, and we provide products and services that will help them be successful,” adds Bills. “The central role that libraries play in boosting literacy is one of the greatest accomplishments of the institution. We’re proud to be helping libraries achieve this calling.”

Here are five questions (and answers) about this unique and innovative program:

  1. How does it work? A library partners with a local business or government organization in its community (like a coffee shop or a hospital waiting room) and sets up an easy-to-use Wi-Fi hotspot in that location. When individuals join the free Wi-Fi network branded with the library’s logo, they’ll be given instant access to the library’s digital collection through Axis 360.
  2. What’s required for users? Absolutely nothing. No no app downloading is required to access eBooks from a Pop Up Library location. Use a smart phone device or computer to connect for free and begin reading directly within the browser; readers can even save the book for later within the browser’s cache during the duration of the library’s check out period.
  3. How does Pop Up Library foster awareness for the library? When browsing the Pop Up Library system, a message will appear for readers encouraging them to sign up for a library card and check out the other resources their local library has to offer. Baker & Taylor will also provide marketing materials to help inform the public about Pop Up Libraries.
  4. What is the benefit for libraries? For years, libraries have tried introducing new ways of engagement, even with limited funding resources. With Pop Up Library, more patrons are introduced to the library thus increasing circulation and membership numbers. And of course, fostering a community full of lifelong readers is the ultimate goal of any library. Pop Up Library helps push that mission forward.
  5. Where do I sign up? For libraries interested in getting more information, contact your sales representative through Baker & Taylor.

 

We’re excited to work with you! For more information contact your sales consultant, email btinfo@baker-taylor.com or call 800-775-1800.

 

Meet Our Cats of 2019!

It’s that meow-velous time of year when we release our annual cat calendar, featuring the faces of friendly felines from around the world. And to top it off, some are even library cats! We are happy to formally introduce you to our 2019 cats!

January

Zephyr
Zephyr

Zephyr | 1 year old

Unique talent: Zephyr loves adventure! He goes hiking, paddleboarding, skiing, and snowshoeing in Colorado.

What makes your cat special?When he’s not exploring the world, he loves wrestling with his best friend, our 9 month old Australian Shepherd puppy, Dante.

Ryan Case, Jefferson County Public Library (Wheat Ridge, CO)

Continue reading “Meet Our Cats of 2019!”