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BizReport : Blogs & Content archives : July 26, 2013

How tech is influencing younger Americans. Or not.

Millennials in the US are more apt to use public libraries than many experts thing. According to new data out from Pew Research, Americans between the ages of 16 and 29 are more likely than their older counterparts to use library Internet connections and to read physical books.

by Kristina Knight

According to the Pew Researchreport:

• 75% of Millennials say they've read at least 1 print book over the past year
• 60% say they use the library for studying or to watch/listen to media
• 18% have used mobile devices to access library websites/resources

As for programs they'd like to see, most believe educational coordination with local schools and literacy programs are important, as well as comfortable reading spaces. They would also like to see areas segregated for different uses - separate areas for computer use, for example, or areas dedicated to small children or studying. Those priorities, by the way, are almost exactly the same as the priorities the older Americans have for libraries.

"[When] given a series of questions about possible new services at libraries, Americans ages 16-29 expressed the strongest interest in apps that would let them locate library materials within the library or access library services on their phone, as well as library kiosks that would make library materials available throughout the community. In addition, younger respondents were somewhat more likely than older adults to say they would be likely to use personalized online accounts, digital media labs, and pre-loaded e-readers," was written in the report.

And that is where local businesses could come into play. Library budgets are being cut, as many others are. Local businesses could 'sponsor' reading areas or underwrite literacy or educational programs. While this might not bring an immediate increase in store traffic, it would build good will, increase the brand's name recognition and those things could spur traffic - and buying - increases.

Image via Shutterstock

Tags: branded content, content trends, library, library trends, mobile content, Pew Research

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