One way I keep up with emerging trends is to actually try things out when I hear about them. Sometimes, that means creating an account in a new service. Sometimes it might mean buying something (an Amazon Echo is on my wish list).
Here are 3 things I’ve been experimenting with recently:
Instagram Business Profile: I wanted to learn more about Instagram’s Business Profiles, so I switched my personal Instagram account to a Business account. So now I can get analytics and create ads (which I probably won’t mess with). I’m doing it to learn more about analytics, and what types of videos and images resonate with people.
Recently, I answered a couple of music-related questions, and people liked one of my answers. I think because of that, I was invited to Quora’s Partner Program. Did you know you can get paid to ask good questions? I’ve made a whopping $1.05 so far … so maybe I don’t ask great questions. But still …it’s a very interesting tool to learn about, and certainly has some ramifications for libraries!
I chose to connect my contact list … and ended up bombarding all of my Gmail and Facebook contacts with emails, asking them to get a Dock.io account. Even people like my parents and older people I go to church with. They’re actually asking me if they need to join it. And it didn’t just do it once or twice – it sent those emails every week. Yikes!
I finally figured out how to turn that off (and there’s apparently other people sorta ticked about that email spammy thing, too). Lesson learned.
Ok … 3 experiments. Two wins, one fail. Really, 3 wins because I learned something with each experiment. That’s one way I learn about emerging trends – learning by playing.
If you don’t normally experiment with new things, I suggest stepping outside of your comfort zone and trying something out – maybe just one thing you’ve heard about. See what it does, how it works. Think about how it might work for your library.
And yes, I’ll forgive you if you end up spamming me 🙂
Image from Wikimedia Commons