Social Media Management with Sara Leavens

Sara Leavens from the Penn Libraries Advancement team and I met recently to have a 15-minute chat about what social media work means in 2017. We covered how Sara came to the libraries, what it looked like for her to compile all the Penn Libraries’ social media accounts under one umbrella, and what she thinks is the next big social media trend / need!

Some fun facts from our chat:

  • Sara has one of the longest titles in the library: Communications, Marketing, and Social Media Coordinator at the Penn Libraries.
  • Social media is 1/3 of Sara’s job.
  • Anytime you read text from any of the Penn Libraries social media handles: @upennlib or The Penn Libraries, you’re reading Sara’s original copy or copy from colleagues that Sara has curated.

Here’s a screenshot of the Penn Libraries Twitter account that Sara coordinates:

  • Social media at the Penn Libraries is curated across platforms.
  • The Penn Libraries has an account with Lynda.com which is part of LinkedIn. The certifications there were hugely helpful for Sara. Having a basic LinkedIn profile is so important because it gives you access to so many digital tools and allows you to keep up with platforms and social media how-to’s beyond the classroom.
  • The Penn Libraries offers photoshoots for LinkedIn profile photos.
  • 1/3 of Sara’s job is marketing, so she spent a lot of time in our chat talking about all the resources the libraries can provide to student to learn about media in the online landscape.
  • More and more students are looking outside of their traditional classroom settings to learn about digital and social media production.
  • The Penn Libraries has been a warm and welcoming space for its interns to create new media. Sara’s background in creative writing and her MFA helped her curate an equally warm voice for the Penn Libraries text output.
  • Creative writing experience + Sara’s generational experiences allow her to feel like the libraries is the best place for the merger between text and digital media.
  • I mentioned that you need fundamental skills and keystone lessons in communication to become a good writer, but once you’ve taken those core classes, it’s fun to riff off of those basic skills and create new texts (digital, video, & audio texts).

Check out the full interview for more of our discussion:

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