John Coll, Head of Access at the National Library of Scotland, kindly reviews a recent SLA Europe event held in Edinburgh.
Asking attendees to ensure that their phones are switched on, rather than off, is not a common occurrence at many talks held at the National Library of Scotland. However, when it is on the topic of social media for information professionals, it does create the expectation that users can actively contribute to the presentation by tweeting about it from the very start. The SLA Europe event which drew just under 40 attendees was both entertaining and informative.
Bryan Christie, Head of Media and External Relations at the National Library of Scotland (NLS), gave an overview of the importance and impact of social media for organisations as well as providing a specific example of how the NLS used a Facebook campaign to drive up awareness of the organisation. Some useful metrics were also provided to demonstrate the actual benefits of using social media. The second speaker Nick Goldstein gave a fascinating talk on social media and how people use and invest time in both personal and professional networking through such a medium and the different content they expect to see. He also spoke specifically on LinkedIn which has 200 million members in over 200 countries.
The formal presentations were followed by questions and both speakers provided tips on how to use social media more effectively for promoting both your organisation and yourself; the latter in terms of professional development and career opportunities. Following on from this was the very popular informal networking where attendees were able to make new contacts or renew old acquaintances. This was a popular and well attended event and feedback from those present indicated that future SLA events in Scotland would be very much welcomed. It is hoped to run a further event sometime in early autumn, so keep an eye on our events page.
Our thanks once again to the National Library of Scotland for the free use of facilities and to LM Information Delivery for sponsoring the event.