Collapsible FAQ

A little piece of work which I’m fairly happy with is this collapsible FAQ for our new WiFi page. It’s just some Bootstrap.

Closed:

Open:

It took a few variations to figure out the best layout for it. Originally I had screenshots from a Mac, PC, iPhone, iPad, and Android phone. Then I downsized and dropped the iPad. It’s listed first here since it’s the most common iOS for our users.

How’s It Going + Bitly Realizations

A small thing came home to roost today: 50% of my job now is emailing people reminders to do stuff. I’m giving myself reminders to email people to send me info for publicity items I’m making or promoting for them. I’m not actually making a lot of things at the moment since I’m busy tracking who owes me what for which program they’re hosting. Or to ensure that everyone feels included in contributing ideas for social media promotional materials. Today is World Poetry Day for instance, so I emailed five people to ask for a favorite poem to share. Then I snipped a stanza for a tweet, grabbed a custom short URL, and posted it to Twitter with a link and hashtag.

Social Media Ads
I’m also trying VERY hard to not obsessively check our Twitter and Facebook ad stats. We’re about to wrap up a several months long publicity run for a fundraiser. Once it’s done, I’ll compile a big report listing all our publicity efforts stats. Then next year I’ll clone the Asana project so we’ll know what items we have to do in the next round.

Note: we’ve been casually buying FB ads for awhile. I’m now obsessively detailing the stats in a new Google spreadsheet.

Bitly
Speaking of custom short URLs, we purchased dar.to to use with our bitly account. I showed key players how to install the Chrome extension and use it to tag their links. We’re using the links in social media, emails, and some linking of items on the website. This turned out to be a bigger dive than I anticipated:

* It doesn’t appear that you can further customize links once you have a custom URL in bitly.
* In order to get bitly links to show up correctly in Google Analytics, I’d need to run the original URL through a special Google tool. Then take that new URL and plug that into bitly. I’m saving this for something special.

We did get our first custom URL to show up in a newspaper printed press release. This is very exciting!

Weekly Stats Emails
I’m also spending a fair chunk of time creating stat emails which I send out:

* Analysis of how the previous Friday’s weekly events email did in terms of opens and clicks.
* Outreach on which events were mentioned in the two local papers and social media highlights.
* On/off again email to my boss on what marketing pieces I created this week and who I held meetings with. I often get too busy to follow up on this one.

Pi Day Blizzard Email

My hobby is making nice throwaway emails like this. The design is a default theme available from MailChimp. I realized later that I should have made the adult programs plural. There was a last minute change and I had to get the email out, so I missed it. There’s a lot going on in the text which I’m not 100% happy with it. Everyone likes clicking on Jen’s recommendation from Hoopla though so that’s a success.

Courtesy of Darien Library

People Read to the Bottom

Courtesy of Darien Library

One question I’ve had is wondering if anyone ever read to the bottom of our weekly events email. It’s somewhat hard to tell since clicks aren’t overwhelming positive. However, this week I finally got a definite response to our Did You Knows:

* 50: CSA Farm Share
* 19: HBO’s Big Little Lies booklist
* 24: Save the date for an event

That’s HUGE for us. I’d like to thank our director and the Head of Adult Programming for helping me select the items we’d feature in the DYKs. Each week I put in three items.

Publicity Plan for WPA-enabled WiFi

Today we launched our new WPA-enabled WiFi which requires a password to log on. We’ve provided the password on our website, on a digital sign, and on tabletop signs throughout the Library. The publicity plan for this was quite heavy, though we scaled back some pieces in the end:

* Setup periodical reminders for the weekly events email
* As a Did You Know item in the weekly events email
* Library News (viewed on the patron’s dashboard when they log in)
* Facebook post
* Twitter post
* Update the Computers and Technology page
* Write a WiFi page for the website
* (Accidentally) Write a brief FAQ on online security (the questions initially came from the head of reference)
* Tabletop signs
* Digital sign
* Message on public computers’ login screen
* Did You Know item for the website
* Blurb on the FAQ page

The most time-consuming piece was writing the online security page. It was like a snowball — once you started writing, you’d realize that you need to define something else. In my mind, the confused faces of patrons asking “Browser?” kept pushing me to simplify and leave no details out. We’ll likely need to continue to tweak the language a little bit, but this is the starter page for online security.

Mac Migration

After 5.5 years, I was upgraded to a new Mac at work. The old Mac tower is still serviceable, but it was struggling to process video footage while also allowing me to run Tweetdeck and Google Chrome for other tasks. The new Mac arrived about a month ago and it took till today to get everything transitioned over to the new iMac.

Digital Signage
The biggest hang up was the licensing for the software which runs our digital signage. I was running an older version on my old Mac which worked very well. However, the company doesn’t support that version for OS X Sierra, so an upgraded was needed. In order to do that, my old Mac had to be upgraded two versions, then have the licenses transferred to the cloud. I then had to contact the company so they would then release the licenses to be accessed via the new Mac. Our system admin then took care of doing the double upgrades + OS X upgrade on the six player machines. I spoke with customer service twice during this process. At least a dozen support emails went back and forth.

Font Incompatible
With that in place and having copied all my remaining items off the old computer, I made the leap today to the new machine. Immediately I ran into a problem: the font we use for our branding doesn’t work with the iWorks software. Over on apple.com, I had to sign in, contact support via chat, they called me, I was put on hold three times, and then finally a nice guy named Nick picked up. He remote viewed into my machine to see the problem for himself. After several checks verifying the problem, he told me that yes, the font just isn’t compatible.

What I was seeing is that every time I hit a hard return in Pages or Keynote, a quote mark would show up at the end of the line. The guy recommended that I contact the font company for support on getting a Mac-compatible version of the font. I had used this font for 5.5 years on the old Mac. I’ve found an open source alternative which I’m using in the meanwhile while waiting on further instruction from my boss.

Google Chrome
Trusty ol’ Google Chrome also failed too. I know on other devices that if I log the browser in, everything will cross-populate over to the new system. That did not happen here. I ended up using a separate extension to backup all my tabs and then move them over to the new machine.

PC
Our system admin wound up on the floor helping me pull out cords as we tried to figure out why my PC’s monitor suddenly stopped working too during the transition. When I had to leave to get on desk, he was still tugging at cords. When I returned an hour later, the monitor was on.

Overall, this process has been quite exhausting!

New Micro Report: Clicks in Weekly Events Email

I still feel like I have no idea what I’m doing in developing reports, but this week’s attempt at finding meaningful information is to send a new micro report. It goes to the Head of Adult Programming and the Children’s events coordinator. I list the top 5 events clicked on per category. My ultimate goal is to help event planners be able to better predict their audiences based upon email interactions. This is part of my strategy in reducing descriptions in weekly events emails to just titles + date. If people want to know more, they’ll click through and thus provide us with valuable information.

Now if I can get a steady pipeline from people on their attendance stats…

First Time Experience with Facebook Live

In that LJ marketing class, a speaker talked about livestreaming with Facebook Live. We talked about it at work and finally the stars aligned when I was signed up to attend Stephanie’s Bullet Journal class. She emailed me yesterday and asked if I’d like to film her presentation. Sure! You can see her video below and my notes on the experience below.

Prep Work
I over prepared by bringing up a laptop, soundproof headphones, and my phone. My intentions were to film while listening in to the stream on the computer as a quality check. It quickly became apparent that the FB Live was about 5 seconds behind the real thing which was hard to handle. I eventually closed the laptop. My phone was plugged into the laptop to sustain its power hunger for the entire hour and seven minute presentation.

Setup & Camera Movement
Stephanie sat at the end of the table and I sat on the right side of the table about two feet from her. Since our Facebook page is a business account, you have to download the Page Manager app, not the Facebook one. The live button is hidden. You need to go to your account page then click on post. From there, you have an option to choose live. It seems to default to the camera facing you.

For the most part, my elbows were drawn close to my body so I could just see her from the elbows up. When she talked about something on-screen, I’d turn the camera and then pinch in on my screen to zoom. Then I tried to be fancy and pinch out simultaneously when moving back to Stephanie herself. The footage timed out twice when it disconnected from the staff’s WiFi.

Audience Response
I was able to very slowly like people’s comments and reply. At the end of the program, around 750 people had been exposed to the Live event, 220-ish had popped in, we had 16 likes, and a handful of comments. Not bad for a first adventure!

Health Hazards
It’s hard to hold your phone that long. My hands started cramping up. The worst pain was a stitch in my right side. At times I felt like I couldn’t breathe completely. This could be because I re-aggravated my previously impinged rotator cuff on Sunday. At the end, I was very, very tired.