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Now Is The Time for a Digital Library Branch

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digital library branchWell, it finally happened. That thing web developers and technology geeks have been warning you about for decades, finally occurred. The bottom fell out and we have no idea how to put it back together. We need to be digital until further notice. Were you ready when the bottom fell out or were you scrambling to figure out how to float? COVID-19 opened a lot of eyes in foundational industries around the world including libraries. Did you find it easy to go digital quickly or did it take some getting used to? Well, what if I tell you, you could setup something so that you are always ready.

Introducing a Digital Library Branch

What’s that? Well it’s more than a website but not quite a brick and mortar. It’s a digital library branch, just the way it sounds. A digital library branch offers your patrons all of the benefits of going to the library but from the comfort of their home. They can not only browse your collection, they can also engage with library staff, take a class, listen to a story time, attend a speaker series, and so much more.

How can this happen you ask? The Internet is a magical place that can allow your library system to host a number of live and recorded activities for your patrons. I specialize in setting up digital library branches, trust me I know the magical powers of the Internet. So what is the process like, setting up a digital library branch? Simple, just do it!

Your Website is NOT a Digital Library Branch

I’m sorry to break it to you, but your website connected to your ILS is not a digital library branch. It’s simply a website connected to an ILS. I say this because your library system is much more than checking out books, isn’t it? Yes, it’s engaging with patrons, it’s adding value to the community, it’s introducing the town to new authors, speakers, and change makers. Your library system is about so much more than books and the community expects more from you than books.

How is a Digital Library Branch Different from a Website

Your digital library branch is created to provide patrons a way to experience the library when they want, from where they want, on whichever device they want. Through your digital library branch patrons can take a pre-recorded class on homeschooling from a local teacher. They can listen to the latest book reviews on your podcast. They can even sit their kids down in front of the computer to listen to a noon story time. All of this would be available at the click of a button from your digital branch. It’s a way for patrons to take advantage of your  benefits while social distancing.

How Do I Setup a Digital Library Branch?

I know setting up a brand new website sounds like a daunting task and it can be in some cases, but it’s well worth the effort. However, you start by identifying who your audience will be and what type of content you want patrons to have access to. Next, you’ll need to identify staff members who you’d like to help run the new branch. As with any new branch you will need staff to manage the content and man the live chat feature. Now you’ve got your target market identified, staff prepped and ready, and content organized, the only thing left is to create the website. That’s where I come in. I’ve been building websites for over 15 years and I have experience designing, developing and managing a digital branch. Let me help you reach this goal. Simply visit my packages and pricing page. There you will find all the details on each of the packages and links to my price calculator. Don’t get stuck again, let 2020 be the year your library system truly goes digital!

To read more great content, check out my other articles. And don’t forget to follow me on LinkedIn and YouTube!


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