Category Archives: Text Messaging in Libraries

4 Ways Text Messaging Can Improve Your Patron Communications

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A recent Pew study revealed that 80 percent of American cell phone owners use text messaging as a means of communication, sending or receiving an average of 41.5 text messages per day. For the 18-24 age group, 97 percent of cell phone owners text, sending or receiving an average of 109.5 texts per day.

One look at these numbers and you know instantly how to reach a majority of your current library patrons and an even greater majority of tomorrow’s library patrons: via text.

Text messaging is a fast and efficient means of communicating with your library patrons and there are many ways in which you can use text messaging to improve your patron communications. Here are just a few types of messages you can communicate to your patrons via text:

1. Circulation Notices Such as Holds and Overdues.

Emails today convey much less of a sense of urgency than they did a few years ago, especially to younger library patrons. To catch your users’ attention with important circulation notices, try sending them via text instead of email. This way, they can act on the notices immediately.

2. Promotional Polls and Contests

A great way to keep your patrons engaged is to link promotions to programming and other library events. Your library can have contests where you send out polls or questions via text for prizes such as first row seats to an upcoming speaker (ie. “The first three patrons to text us the author of Tender Is the Night win front row seats to our October Author Speaker Series Event”). You can also hold a text vote to choose between two programming possibilities for an upcoming date.

3. URLs to Newsletters or Other Library Publications

Does your library publish a monthly newsletter? A terrific way to get the newsletter into the hands of your patrons so they may have immediate access is to send them a short text with the URL right when it is published. Your patrons can be reading the newsletter that your staff worked so hard on literally within seconds of publication.

4. Programming Reminders

In today’s fast-paced and information-packed world, we need to be reminded of things. A great way to promote your library programs is to send your patrons text reminders of upcoming events, along with URLs linking to further information if available. This way, they can check their schedules on the go and even add the events directly from your text to their calendars.

Try these text messaging tips to improve communications at your library. We think your patrons will appreciate it.

Library News Update: African Libraries in the Digital Age – “Reaching Outside Their Walls”, Introducing the new standalone catalog system, Dubai libraries: A paradise for book lovers

Here at Mosio, we love to hear about ways libraries going digital. One consistent technology trend that is driving up circulation numbers across the country is e-books. West Virginia public libraries are finding that their patrons want books in every form they can get them, from paper to audio books to ebooks. The variety of options is bringing people in the door.

Popularity of eBooks has changed library circulation

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Meanwhile in Texas, Bryan-College Station libraries have seen an additional 2000 patrons due to their e-book collection.

Bryan-College Station libraries increasing use of eBooks

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E-books are also driving an steady monthly uptick in circulation numbers at the Calloway County Library in Kentucky.

Ebooks proving popular at Calloway library

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Where do you learn how to survive a zombie apocolypse? The public library of course. The Baraboo Library is bringing teens in the library by turning it into a community center with their Tuesday night programs. During the zombie program teens discussed zombies in pop culture, as well as learned important lessons about overall disaster preparedness.

Feeding teen brains at the library

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Here are some more news bytes about digital libraries and libraries as community spaces.

African Libraries in the Digital Age – “Reaching Outside Their Walls”

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Advances in technology changes local libraries for the better

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Heard Off the Street: Library’s 3-D printer spits out all kinds of fun and learning

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Column: Library offers plenty of e-options

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Introducing the new standalone catalog system

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Chicago Public Library to Open Free Digital Fabrication Maker Space

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South Brunswick Library Offers Cardholders Access To Digital Magazines

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A single library card for Bradford County

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The New York Public Library checks out e-commerce

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Solano libraries now lend out laptops

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Rockford Public Library Seeing More Digital Bookworms

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Dubai libraries: A paradise for book lovers

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Little Free Libraries’ Catching On In Door County

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Library of Congress Transitions to Free, Online-Only Cataloging Publications

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Houston Public Library unveils new catalog, customer account interface

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Rafael Anchia: Think libraries are important? Let’s prove it

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HUDSON LIBRARY OFFERS DIGITAL PROGRAMS TO WHET THE TECHIE APPETITE

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Secrets of the Library: Download magazines and more at your library

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Library one of the best deals in town, says director

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“Little Free Library” encourages reading, community spirit

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Library’s electronic magazines free, easy

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Found and listed by Mosio for Libraries – Patron Support Software for Libraries. All copyright belongs to original owners.

Mosio for Libraries Intro Video: Multi-Channel Ask a Librarian Software | Chat + Email + Text Messaging + Widgets

The Mosio for Libraries “trailer” video is live! A 1 minute, 45 second explanation of why more librarians are choosing Mosio for their virtual reference and Ask a Librarian software needs.

Mosio enables libraries to receive and respond efficiently to questions from patrons via web chat, email, text messaging and support widgets for your website, blog and electronic resources. We’ll stop typing now and you can just watch the video. :)

 

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Library NewsByte: The library is home to not only books, Library launches free mobile app, Vending machines latest library offering from Northland

Members of the public making good use of the Family Mobile Library during its stop at Reayrt y Chrink, Port Erin

Maureen Sullivan, President of the ALA, writes on the Huffington Post about the new Pew study showing that the vast majority of parents place a high value libraries. She discusses what libraries have to offer children and parents, from tangible resources to intangible experiences, such as instilling a love of reading and providing a safe community environment.

Libraries Offer Children Resources Not Available at Home

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One of the intangible items libraries offer to all patrons, is the experience of browsing. This editorial talks about the personal experience of browsing at the library.

Libraries offer more than books – it’s a personal experience

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In this difficult economy, people are finding the library can be an essential resource in finding a job. The Spencer Daily Reporter talks specifically about the ways the Spencer Public Library is helping patrons in their job search. They include access to computers and the internet and books on cover letters, resumes, and job searching. Additionally, the library website has links to skill building resources.

How the library Can Help You to Find a Job!

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Read more about the ways libraries are helping people in these other news items.

The library is home to not only books

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Clive library to launch new online catalog

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Library makes changes

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Parents Value Libraries’ Digital Technologies and Programs, Pew Research Shows

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The New York Public Library Discusses eBook Pilot Projects

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Get the library app

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Even in Digital Age, Libraries Still Considered Crucial to Youth Development by Most U.S. Parents

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College Libraries Transition to High Tech Learning Centers

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Libraries; maintaining a role in the digital world

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Mobile service helping those who can’t get to local library

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B-BP Looking to Shore Up Library Programs, Enhance Technology

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Little Free Library is a great, big idea in little, tiny space

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Shorewood-Troy Library Now Offers Home Delivery Service

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Vending machines latest library offering from Northland

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Magazines go digital at Garfield County Libraries

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More people using libraries with book loans up 3% in 2012

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3D Printing Comes to Sunnyvale Library

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New Rochelle Library is not bed-bug infested

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New Library Program to Try Out Tablets & E-Readers Starts at 10 a.m.

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Library launches free mobile app

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Libraries unite to bump up size of catalog

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The bookmobile gets the digital treatment

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Found and listed by Mosio for Libraries – Patron Support Software for Libraries. All copyright belongs to original owners.

Can personalized library customer service survive in our increasingly digital and mobile world?

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The image of the library in the modern world is changing as rapidly as technology. Gone are the silent, cavernous collections guarded by scowling librarians. Libraries of today are as much about computers and information technology as they are about books. But, one of the things that has always made the library experience so special is the personal touch that customer service provides. The human aspect of libraries is something that can never be replaced by technology, and indeed, today it is more important than ever due to the massive amount of information that is available to patrons.

In the libraries of yesterday, patrons may have sought help in using the card catalogue or locating a book on the shelves. The customer service aspect of those times was much narrower in scope. A patron today may need assistance with a variety of media; books, software, internet databases, and more. Even though so much can be accessed in a solitary fashion, i.e. the patron perusing materials independently, the library experience can be made so much better with strong, personalized customer service. And, thanks to ever-evolving options, the way that customer service can be provided is as diverse as technology itself.

Customer service no longer has to be limited to the actual brick-and-mortar library. Texting, which is vastly popular in society as a whole, is a wonderful tool for librarians to use when helping patrons. A patron can literally be anywhere and still be able to get personalized help and important answers. As much information as there is in the world, there is still no substitute for having an actual knowledgeable person to help a patron with a question. Personalized customer service is as vital today as ever—perhaps even more so! It is a very reachable goal for all libraries to foster strong interaction with their patrons through ever more diverse means. Pursuing this ideal will ensure that libraries remain the most vital source of information that they can be.

About the author: Lizabeth C.S. Bell has worked as a librarian, and has a great appreciation for the power of information. She has degrees in English literature and library science. Currently, Lizabeth is a freelance editor and writer. Follow her on Twitter @LizBell9.

Library Customer Service: Online vs. In-Person (Ask a Librarian Software vs. Asking a Librarian in Real Life)

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Libraries, and the folks who work in them, solve problems for patrons by connecting them with the resources and information that they need.

In today’s online world an ever-increasing amount of this help is taking place via the magic of the web and mobile technologies. Patrons are no longer face-to-face with the library staff who are helping them. Instead, they are communicating with the library from their homes, their offices, and on-the-go via their mobile devices.

Libraries today must be ready to deliver excellent customer service in this online environment. Top-notch customer service is something patrons have come to expect from libraries, and this service needs to extend to the growing world of virtual assistance.

Online customer service is applied in different ways than face-to-face customer service, but it adheres to the same two central precepts:

(1) Ensure the patron knows you are listening to his or her query and that you are committed to helping until his or her information problem is resolved; and

(2) Do it with a smile on your face.

Using Ask a Librarian Software you can achieve number one by frequently communicating with patrons so they know you have not left them. Remember, they cannot see you, so you must tell them exactly what you are doing. One minute of unexplained silence in a chat box can seem an eternity and is enough to lose a patron. If a search is taking longer than expected, give the patron frequent updates so he or she knows you are still with them.

To achieve number two, you must convey your smile with the language that you use. Phrases like, “It’s my pleasure to help you today,” “Have I answered all of your questions fully and completely,” and “Thank you for being so patient,” will go a long way towards conveying that smile and giving your patrons the warm, cared-for feeling they look forward to from a library interaction.

Michael English is an academic librarian and freelance writer/editor.

This article is provided by Mosio for Libraries. To receive these directly in your inbox, please register for our Patron Support Tips Newsletter.


Patron Support Simplified
www.mosio.com/libraries

Mosio’s Patron Support and Help Desk Software for Libraries [VIDEO]

Hello!

This video explains all of the great reasons why more librarians choose Mosio. Our patron support software for libraries enables you to help more patrons wherever they are, faster. We offer simple copy/paste widget code for your website, blogs, content management systems and online resource areas. When patrons have questions, they click the tab, type in their question and choose their communication channel of choice: Web Chat, Text Messaging or Email.

Based on our popular Text a Librarian platform, patrons can also send/receive text messages from their mobile phones with your library, giving them communication access when they are online or on the go. Or you can just watch the video which does a great job! :)

To sign up for a webinar or get a quote for your library, visit us at www.textalibrarian.com

Library News: E-books on Loan, Libraries will collect “Food for Fines”, Tips for a Stress-Free Library Experience

Rochester Library Can Now Text You When Your Favorite Author’s Latest Book Hits Shelves

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Libraries’ literacy program helps meet families’ needs

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E-books on loan from Frackville, Orwigsburg libraries

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Public libraries evolving with technology

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Take your libraries seriously

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Libraries across the world

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Libraries will collect “Food for Fines”

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New York Public Library Renovation: First Visualizations Released

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Stolen Little Free Library Finds Its Way Home

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Longmont Public Library patrons will have access to millions of titles

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Tips for a Stress-Free Library Experience

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Library Reading Garden Blooming Soon!

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E-book service at Staunton library

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Library hosts tech sessions to boost gadget know-how

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Branching out: New technology should free library staff for other tasks

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Library Guide: Setting up Holiday Auto Responders with Mosio for Libraries

Setting up Holiday Auto Responders

Happy Holidays!

Here’s a quick tutorial on setting up holiday auto responders using Mosio.
You’ve spent time creating great auto responders and with the holidays approaching you want to let patrons know your hours have changed, but don’t want to undo what you’ve already created. No problem! Set up holiday auto responders!

 

Click on Auto Responder (in the Microboard Administration module, see the above image for help). Then click on New Holiday Auto Responder and you’ll be taken to a page that looks like this:

Now…
1) Enter your message.
2) Pick your dates.
3) Click save.
You’re done! :)

And while we have your attention…
Have you added a support tab to your site yet?

We are launching new features that make it even easier to provide support to more patrons while saving you time. If you aren’t ready to launch chat yet, you can still install the support tab. In your microboard, look for the Widget/Tabs/Chat Admin module (above Microboard Administration) and you’ll have directions on how to add a support tab or embeddable widget to your website. As always, if you need any help in setting things up, please let us know by emailing support[[at]]textalibrarian[[dot]]com!

 

Happy Holidays from the Mosio Team!

Library News: Libraries launches text-message service, Do-it-yourself checkouts, Offers Google Chromebooks

A library worth checking out

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Indoor lawns help students handle stress

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Library offers Google Chromebooks, free Wi-Fi

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On the Spectrum: Little Free Libraries’ top 3,000

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Tufts Libraries launches text-message service

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Do-it-yourself checkouts proliferating at suburban libraries 

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Digital age bringing changes to offerings of local libraries

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Libraries help low-income families get connected

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Oldest book in NDSU library uncovered

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Public school libraries increase use of mobile technology

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For information about how your library can deploy patron support software, please get in touch with us. We offer free consultations and a quick quote based on the needs of your library and have helped over 800 libraries across the US and Canada.

Compiled by Mosio’s helpdesk software for libraries. All copyright belongs to original owners.

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