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Using Infographics to Enhance Reader’s Advisory

by on January 11, 2018

I’ve heard two schools of thought regarding reading over the holidays: some people have more time to curl up with a book thanks to time off from work or school, and others become so frantic with preparing for their festivities that reading must take a back burner.

Whatever your guess, a recent article from Reader’s Digest references a Barnes & Noble survey that names the day before Thanksgiving as the busiest reading day of the year, a title that makes sense given how many people tend to spend time commuting that day.[1] Author Meghan Jones notes that 77 percent of those surveyed admit to reading then, and 28 percent rely on what they’ve read to help distract from drama-ridden Thanksgiving dinner conversation topics. Jones also includes a copy of the retailer’s accompanying infographic, which offers book suggestions for different types of travels.

Although the November and December holidays may be over, this article still provides some clever ideas for reader’s advisory that librarians can tailor to their own patrons. The infographic format is a great way of offering bite-sized recommendations for specific circumstances (e.g. “Small Journeys” through “Very Long Journeys”) without appearing dense or overwhelming. It is also visually appealing and on-trend with current digital marketing practices.

Recently, I created an infographic to highlight some of my library’s titles that would be suitable as holiday gifts.[2] Our patrons responded well to it when it was posted to our website and social media accounts, and I plan to make more in 2018. Such graphics are easy to make using free online tools like Piktochart and Canva, and they can work for any type of reader’s advisory. Want to serve up a list of readalikes to popular TV shows? Create an infographic with sections for different shows. Interested in a list of fairy tale retellings? Your creation can contain sections for various story archetypes. The possibilities are endless.

Much of the information in Jones’ article and Barnes & Noble’s suggestions can also prove timely if recycled during the summer, when travel again hits a peak. Seasonal content helps make us more relevant to patrons in their everyday lives, and they will appreciate your suggestions!

Have you implemented infographics in your reader’s advisory strategy? Tell us about it in the comments!


References

[1] Jones, Meghan. “The Busiest Reading Day of the Year Has Been Revealed.” Reader’s Digest. Accessed January 2, 2018. https://www.rd.com/advice/travel/busiest-reading-day-year/.

[2] “Best Books to Gift in 2017.” Worth-Pinkham Memorial Library. December 9, 2017. Accessed January 2, 2018. https://hohokus.bccls.org/news/best-books-to-gift-in-2017.


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