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OCLC offers Best Practices in Virtual Reference Series with Groups and Consortia

Following the success of the recent Seeking Synchronicity webinar, OCLC along with various groups and consortia are offering a series of webinars to discuss and explore best practices in Virtual Reference.

The series is free and will encourage continued localized conversations about improving virtual reference services amongst your group or consortia.

Best Practices in Virtual Reference:  Keeping the Virtual Lights on 24/7

This session will focus on how joining a cooperative group can help libraries keep their virtual reference services going at all hours. Studies show that up to 40% of virtual reference inquiries come in after typical library hours.

Explore the challenges and benefits to working through a cooperative to keep your virtual reference answering users 24/7. Find out if being "on" all the time really makes a difference in your community.

March 6, 2012
1:00pm – 2:00pm Eastern

Register here

Best Practices in Virtual Reference:  Virtual Reference in Tough Times

In tough economic times, everything gets a turn on the chopping block. Make the case for virtual reference to your funding bodies and show them the impact you have online. Hear what has an impact on funders and learn what features are most valuable to your library.

Despite the best advocacy, paying for virtual reference still may not make the cut. Explore what free options you have and hear how they’ve worked for those already using the service. Know what you really need to have in a virtual reference service to make it work for your community.

April 24, 2012
1:00pm  – 2:00pm Eastern

Register here

Best Practices in Virtual Reference: Finding Your Virtual Reference Users Online

Seeking Synchronicity found that one of the biggest obstacles to a successful virtual reference service was getting users to simply know the service existed. How do you find your users online? How do they find you?

Look at what signs have been effective in letting users know about the service. What works best in both drawing users' attention and getting them to know what the service is about? With our constantly changing technical vocabulary, are you really saying what you want to say?

May 17, 2012
1:00pm – 2:00pm Eastern

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Best Practices in Virtual Reference: What the @#$? Dealing with Rude Patrons Online

Not all virtual reference exchanges are friendly chats, despite our best efforts. Hear and share some effective ways to deal with rude users without losing your cool.

June 14, 2012
1:00pm – 2:00pm Eastern

Register here