I admit it. I love Pinterest. I can spend hours skimming, pinning, and commenting. I use it for the typical things: crafts, recipes, and clothes to lust after. But, I also use it to keep track of books I have read and books I want to read, up-and-coming technology, amazing design, and a Christmas list. The user-friendly, visually stunning social media site is perfect for keeping track of things I like from articles fromSmashing Magazine to Jimmy Choos. And everything in between.
I’m not the only one, either. Pinterest is gaining dedicated users quickly much like yours truly so here is what you need to know to be ahead of the social media curve.
- According to comScore, Pinterest holds the record for the fastest standalone site to cross the 10 million unique monthly visitors mark.
- Techcrunch says daily user count is over 2 million.
- While users are currently overwhelmingly female and American, male audience is growing and British men are leading the charge.
But what is it?
Pinterest is a virtual pinboard where you can post the fun, beautiful, funny, inspirational, outrageous things you find on the internet. The platform is highly visual– think of a late 80s teenage girl’s bedroom wall covered in cut-outs of the cutest new leg warmers, Molly Ringwald, big bangs and a pre-#winning Charlie Sheen.
It’s a social media platform where you can share images and video that you find interesting with your friends and others with similar tastes and hobbies. Like Pandora, it helps you find new things similar to what you already like.
The concept is amazingly simple: create boards on specific topics that interest you; find something on the internet that you like, want or enjoy; pin it to your board; watch it spread via repins, the Pinterest equivalent of a retweet. According to Emerson College’s Professor of Social Media David Gerzof Richard, “it’s about finding something that’s interesting to you and sharing it. It’s stupid simple to use. You don’t have to write anything. It’s essentially eye candy.”
But what does this have to do with brands?
Pinterest drives traffic. It drives more website traffic than Google+, YouTube, and LinkedIn combines. In fact, Pinterest is driving 3.6% of website traffic for some 200 ShareHolic member publishers, only .02% less than Google. Some major brands are already on the wagon including Etsy, Whole Foods, STA Travel, and CBS Sports. According to Ad Age, Real Simple magazine is already getting more traffic from Pinterest than from Facebook.
But we don’t have recipes to share or pretty products to pin. How do I make it work for my business?
Make boards for internal use first. Create a board and add co-workers as collaborators. Share funny videos, cool new sites, witty SomeEcards, and 80s movies .gifs. As you grow comfortable and your team enjoys it, create new boards of things that inspire, projects you’re working on or technology in your field. Add a board of books you’ve read or infographics worth a look.
A few final tips to keep in mind:
- Avoid self promotion. Curate; don’t sell.
- Make your boards specific and relevant.
- Follow some big brands for inspiration.
- Pin original material. Don’t just repin. Add to the conversation.
- Re-pin material that you actually read, liked, admired or found inspired.
Why not check out Myjive’s Pinterest boards?
“Tough to pin down, but too popular to ignore”
“Pinterest: How Do US and UK Users Compare”
“Where the Ladies At?”
“Brands, Businesses and Blogs on Pinterest”
“The Marketers Guide to Pinterest“