Houston Public Library: A Case of Modern Mobility

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OUTCOME

When the new app launched, its main integration was OverDrive--a digital lending library that  many libraries across the country offer, which lets users check out ebooks, audiobooks, and periodicals, as well as stream video. But over time, Boopsie added more integrations, and one proved to be a big hit-a subscription service for digital comic books and graphic novels. Those items had previously been available in print and the library's desktop-accessible digital format. But clearly, people wanted access to these in app form. Within a week of adding the subscription service to the Boopsie app, Houston Public Library saw the average daily circulation of the comic books and graphic novels increase 400%.

However, success is measured in more than just numbers. Kadir shares that the library has also gotten positive feedback from users of the app-people letting staffers know how easy it is to use and how easy it is to find a library program or a library location.

And Kadir notes the app continues to grow. One recent integration she's excited about is the addition of the library's digital archives and images collection-historical photos of Houston, such as of buildings, roads, and famous people from Houston, etc. "It's like you're walking around with a lot of historical information in the palm of your hand," Kadir says. Another feature she's looking forward to adding is the ability to send users alerts. If customers opt in for this feature, they can get alerts letting them know about unexpected library closures, as well as letting them know if books are overdue or if items they've requested have arrived.

A feature Vizzini says Boopsie is thinking of implementing in its library app is putting a particular library's three most recent tweets on the app's homescreen, "so every time a user is going back into the app, they're going to see something different."

In short, Kadir is very happy with how things have gone with Boopsie-and in the past 4 years, she has recommended the company to other libraries. Houston Public Library is such a large system that libraries in other communities often ask its staff members for recommendations, and she has definitely shared the word about Boopsie.

Boopsie enjoys the relationship as well. "They've been a delight to work with," Vizzini says of Houston Public Library. "They're so tech savvy. ... They're not accepting the status quo; they're always challenging it. That's what makes them so awesome to work with."  

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