Two talking avatars — Sarah and Suzie SitePal — were lately added to the MSVU Library website. With the addition of the avatars to the website, the Library hopes to make the site more interactive and fun for coming back and new students. The avatars are used to welcome students to the Library, to highlight Library services and resources, and to relay information about Library events. The SitePal software was installed by Denyse Rodrigues, and the avatars were designed and scripted by myself, the Library’s new term librarian accountable for open public services.
SitePal is a subscription internet service that allows users to make and customize talking avatars to increase websites. For any monthly fee, users can choose from a diverse selection of woman and man avatars, can add differing backgrounds, accessories, clothing, and can choose from a wide selection of players and pre-recorded voices. SitePal also allows you to record your own voice to increase the avatar.
I highly recommend taking benefit of this feature because it adds a far more life-like quality to the avatar. The SitePal provided voices sound robotic and monotone and don’t allow for natural inflections in vocabulary. The SitePal design process is user-friendly and contains a series of visual menus that you use to create your avatar simply by picking and simply clicking the countless styles and accessories offered.
The avatars can also be updated easily, as you prefer often, by logging directly into your accounts on the SitePal website and making the necessary changes. Users have the option of fabricating multiple avatars at the same time, so library staff can truly add new life with their collection website by changing the avatars periodically.
- Learn about our SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING Practitioner program
- Turn Your Mouse Pointer Right into a SpotLight for Prese
- Other social media profiles
- Influencers (it’s easy to partner with influencers if you understand how to connect with them)
- From the Format drop-down, choose Font
- Exclusive invites to events and meetings
- Foam stickt disks
The quantity of avatars you can create is dependent upon the type of account you subscribe to: Bronze, Silver, Gold, or Platinum. The designer also has control over the avatar positioning on the webpage, and sound options. I arrange it so Sarah and Suzie would not play automatically and they’re equipped with a play, pause, and mute button. Students control the volume setting and can pick to try out the avatars at their convenience.
Embedding the avatar into your collection website is also a relatively stress-free process. Student response to the avatars has been very favorable. We’ve had several remarks about Sarah and Suzie SitePal posted to the collection blog and it’s been positive feedback. We have also received some valuable recommendations to diversify the library avatars. One student suggested that people create different avatars that reflect our diverse student population, including a more mature library avatar to reflect the great number of mature students who attend MSVU. Students are demonstrating they are involved with the Library avatars and welcome their existence on the website.
To highlight the release of the avatars, the Library is hosting a contest for MSVU students to draw attention to Sarah and Suzie’s existence on the site. Students have been asked to find Suzie SitePal on the MSVU Library website and pay attention to what she has to say, fill out an internet ballot, and enter to win a prize. Suzie SitePal gives a brief description of the online library reference and students are asked to mention the resource or service that Suzie discusses.