Making the Most of Digital Collections Through Training and Outreach: The Innovative Librarian's Guide

Libraries Unlimited: Teacher Ideas. Nov. 2015. 140p. photos. bibliog. index. ISBN 9781440840722. pap. $50; ebk. ISBN 9781440840739. PRO MEDIA
OrangeReviewStarProviding quality service with digital materials is a daunting task for many libraries. Staff and patron training create hurdles not encountered in developing traditional print resources, and the cost of providing digital services can be difficult to manage. Additionally, online collections pose unique marketing challenges. Tanzi (head of digital services, Mastics-Moriches-Shirley Community Lib., NY) offers a cohesive plan for addressing common problems faced by libraries providing ebooks, emagazines, streaming videos, and streaming music. After discussing typical problems, Tanzi introduces a layered training method to reach all staff members. Moving on to patrons, the author presents several types of instruction, from group classes to one-on-one sessions. Tanzi then turns to traditional and device-centered marketing activities such as flyers, newsletters, social media, ebook displays, technology petting zoos, and device lending programs. An entire chapter is devoted to successful outreach activities including presentations, homebound services, and off-site demonstrations. Money-saving tips are practical and simple to incorporate. A brief appendix identifies suppliers of security devices, kiosk resources, and digital media services.
VERDICT Libraries that are not yet offering digital services would be well served by Tanzi's book. Those wishing to enhance patron experiences with digital resources are guaranteed to find inspiration.

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