March 2, 2021

Dear Beanstack fam,

It's March! That means spring is in our sights (for those in the US), and summer is basically around the corner. Just like you, we are gearing up and getting ready to make this a successful summer reading season. 

Throughout the year we have been releasing features and smaller upgrades. Today, we get to announce another big and exciting release...your new and improved admin dashboard! Please read below for more details and what to expect. Of course, if you are looking for more insight into the breadth of new and upcoming features this year, you will want to join us for our roadmap presentation on March 17. Find details below. 

Finally, those in the US should have received a summer prep email and short form to complete in advance of summer 2021. Please bookmark that message and complete the form as soon as possible. Those in AUS/NZ received a summer-in-review survey. Please complete that survey by EOD Friday, March 5!

ICYMI, here is our last client update. 

P.S. Have you seen the new adult challenge, Expanding Your Horizons, sponsored by Penguin Random House? I am participating in it now, and it is terrific!

1. Hello, Beautiful...Admin Dashboard

We are pleased to announce a major upgrade to the Beanstack admin experience! Admins will notice a couple of major improvements to their dashboard.

  • First, we updated the admin navigation experience, adding a modern, responsive navigation bar that provides a more clear and more intuitive path through the many options available to Beanstack admins. 
  • Second, we reorganized key elements of the admin information architecture to raise frequently accessed pages and tools—like challenges—to the top.
We hope that you all love these updates as much as we do. For more information, check out this video, the latest installment of our Product Spotlight blog series, and this article on our helpdesk.

2. Client Spotlight Webinar Tomorrow + Upcoming


Register here for Thursday's webinar with IFPL! Children's programming specialist Mallory Snow, adult services lead librarian, Liza Evans, and other awesome IFPL staff, put together reading programs that keep their community engaged beyond summer and winter reading.

Extreme Book Nerd is IFPL's yearly reading challenge available in different formats for kids, teens, and adults. The goal is to read all year and push your boundaries by reading books in specific categories. 2021 marks the sixth year of the children's program, the seventh year of the adult and teen program, and the second year setting the program up on Beanstack. Mallory and Liza will discuss the ways in which Beanstack has been a great tool for setting up and managing these reading challenges, some of the creative ways they've made the program possible in a virtual environment, and how COVID-19 impacted their decision to move the program online while still offering in-person aspects for their community.

Register here. Gwinnett County Public Library's Youth Services Specialists Don Giacomini and Sarah Martin and Teen Librarian Katharine Russell will share how GCPL has been using Beanstack to engage their community through "living" programs. Feeling as though something different had to be done to excite patrons after the pandemic forced the library closed in Spring 2020, GCPL embraced the notion that Beanstack could be more than a preset program and could play host to regularly updated content to excite and inspire patrons. The three will share how - through Summer Reading and two new, year-round programs - their new approach is working.

3. What's New and Next: Beanstack Roadmap Check-in Webinar

Curious about what the Beanstack product team is planning for 2021? Want a recap of recent feature releases? You're in luck! Register for one of our upcoming New Feature Webinars to hear all about how our product team continues to innovate with input from you and your communities.

Register here for the webinar on Thursday, March 17 at 2pm Eastern. This webinar will be recorded and available upon request. 

4. TD Summer Reading Club Now Available in Beanstack


TD Summer Reading Club templates and badges are now available to all participating Canadian libraries! Available templates are now loaded onto your sites with the names Club de lecture d’été TD 2021 and TD Summer Reading Club. You will also find badges and banners loaded into templates, as well as on our helpdesk here. These are available for use by those participating in the TD Summer Reading Club in Canada. To register your library for the TD Summer Reading Club please email Sophie Goderre at

5. Final Reminder: Friends Feature in Beanstack

Last week, we sent out this email about the new Friends feature in Beanstack. As a result of your feedback, we will be making two important updates upon release. 

  • First, it will be possible to allow patrons to connect as friends while not showing a leaderboard.
  • Second, it will be possible to allow patrons to connect as friends while not allowing them to share their reading logs.
Both of these settings will be available to library admins, giving you greater control over how best to use this feature set to gain more registrations and active participation. In any case, if you do not want this feature revealed on your site at all and have not yet gotten in touch, please do before 12 pm this Friday, March 5. Thank you. We are very excited to release this feature next week!


As always, thank you for all that you do to serve your community each and every day. We see you and we appreciate you. Have a wonderful day!

Keep Reading,

Jordan Lloyd Bookey
Co-Founder, Zoobean
Phone: 202.735.1005