Custom Digital Marketing, Social & Interactive Media Consulting

What is Pinterest?

Pinterest is a virtual pinboard that allows users to organize and share all the things they find on the web. Users can browse boards created by other users and find users who share their interests. Users connect/network through the things they find interesting. Users 'pin' images to their personal boards (images link back to the original site) or 'repin' images from other's boards they follow. Starting in spring 2010 under invite-only open beta status, Pinterest became available to all (no invite or request required) in August 2012. Recent notable additions to the site include adding the ability for users to report objectionable/inappropriate content as well as block other users from viewing their content in October 2012, business accounts/pages also in October 2012 and 'Secret Boards' -- boards that don't show up anywhere else on Pinterest -- in November 2012.
Definition in part from Pinterest and Wikipedia

Positive Points:

  • Integration with established social networks Facebook and Twitter - importing of existing contacts, cross-platform posting of pin activity
  • Free to sign up and use with a low adoption barrier (minimal interface, simple and clear user actions)
  • Drives more referral traffic than Google+, LinkedIn and YouTube combined
  • Takes advantage of the overall shift of the Internet and iMedia toward increasing use of images
  • As the newest player in the social network arena, lots of buzz and visibility surround any activity on Pinterest (steadily increasing user base, higher interaction levels)
  • Reports indicate that Pinterest is retaining (and engaging) users as much as 2-3x more efficiently as Twitter was during a similar time in its history

Potential Pitfalls:

  • Requires a certain degree of photography/imaging skill to fully capitalize on image-centered Pinterest structure
  • Approximately 80% female/20% male user base
  • Some concern over copyright infringement (an opt-out 'nopin' HTML meta tag was rolled out in February 2012, allowing websites to make their content 'unpinnable')
  • Because of Pinterest's image-heavy culture, users or businesses that tend to lack (quality) images may not be able to take full advantage of Pinterest
  • Prevailing sentiment that the majority of Pinterest is wedding ideas, fashion and beauty items, household decor and recipes