Innovative Ways Libraries Could Adapt to the New Normal

Ever since the COVID-19 pandemic loomed its ugly head, the world has undergone a drastic change. Social distancing has become part of the norm, and many establishments have closed down their physical stores, and conduct their business virtually. 

However, for places such as libraries, this can be somewhat difficult. Libraries are public places, and in order for visitors to peruse the multitude of books inside, they will have to go there. 

With the lockdowns and many restrictions, this has become difficult. Many libraries are now forced to deal with this challenge, and are faced with the very real threat of closing their doors. 

However, there are many ways that librarians can face these challenges. 

Here are innovative ways libraries can adapt to the new normal.

  • Library blogs

If you want the local library to have a loyal following despite the pandemic, you should make sure that it has its own website. Remember that a majority of people conduct their business online, and if you want your local library to stay relevant, you should set up a great website for it. 

By having a website, your library will be a lot easier to discover. If potential visitors are looking for a certain book, they will be able to check the library website. 

If they have any questions about the library’s policies, they can also contact the library. Through your library blog, you will be able to post a myriad of content that will keep the library in the public eye.

  • Virtual Book Readings for Kids

Yet another way to keep your local library as relevant as possible, is to hold weekly events that children and even their parents can look forward to. One of the best ways to do this, is to set up weekly book readings. 

The same way some libraries hold book readings for kids, you can schedule weekly zoom sessions where interested parties can read books, and anyone can just tune in to listen. You can also record these readings and post them through the library website. 

By doing so, you are still fulfilling one of the library’s key roles, which is to educate and entertain people of all ages.

  • Library Tours

There are a good number of bibliophiles who love the feel of a library. They love the smell of old books, neatly arranged books and the soothing silence associated with most libraries. 

Sadly, due to pandemic restrictions, most libraries are closed to the public. However, this does not mean that they can’t visit the library. 

You just need to be resourceful. One way you can have people visit the library is to conduct a virtual library tour. Aside from bibliophiles, these library tours are great for kids because they will be able to hone their love for reading through these virtual tours.

  • Book Recommendations for the week

Some libraries use the book of the week concept wherein the librarian chooses a book and recommends it to the library goers. It is usually accompanied by a short review of the book, and a call to action to borrow them while supplies last. 

You can post these recommendations through your library websites, and have the books mailed to borrowers. This may seem unusual, however, these are unprecedented times so the library will need to adapt new borrowing policies.

  • Weekly Book Clubs

If you want more people to get involved in your local library, you should set up a book club and have weekly meetings. Virtual meetings are the perfect tool when it comes to having book club meetings. 

All you need is a set time for your book club meetings, a specific book for the club to review and a dedicated core group of members, and you won’t even know the difference between a virtual meeting and a traditional book club meeting.

In the past few months, the world has changed drastically. Many establishments were forced to close down temporarily or even permanently. 

So it all comes down to how well they adapt to the new normal. With these tips, libraries will prove that they are still relevant and useful in this new landscape.

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