Pinterest: A Great Tool To Connect & Share With Your Community
For those of us who have been using Pinterest for a while now, we are not surprised that Pinterest has become the ultimate connecting & sharing tool.
Pinterest, for those who do not know what it is, is an online bookmarking tool / pin board.
The technology allows us to do what comes naturally;
- see a picture we like on the web
- ‘pin it’ to a board (save it organised in a group / theme)
- check our our friends’ activity
- share and like their pictures
Even better, Pinterest gives you the ‘Pin It’ button that is added to the toolbar – too easy!
Unlike other sites, Pinterest does not manipulate us to do its bidding, it has simply enabled people to make it easy to use.
When I started using Pinterest, in May 2011, I thought it was a god-send! I had been saving images to my computer in folders and taking up a lot os space. Now my pics are available online. & in groups and I can share them. The other thing that impressed me was the quality of the images and the variety of people. Over the last month or so, I have noticed a lot of the ‘geeks’ have started boards, so this will add another dimension.
I actually would like to be able to share some boards with only certain people, clients, but that is a ‘would-be-nice’ item and not hampering my use of it today.
Initially, the T&Cs said that we could not use it for businesses so my excitement was a little contained! But now we can share our products online. However we have to do this n a very subtle way. Overtly selling will result in the ‘community’ turning off you and your boards! The community would not include you and this is the true power of social. Interestingly, I had a look at Nordstrom’s boards and it looks like their website, I don’t find it interesting or creative and unfollowed – very disappointing as I love the store.
Before Pinterest, I used Polyvore, to create ‘story boards’ but was more limited to fashion,. It is a little different to Pinterest but was a predecessor, they do enable you to add your own pics but it wasn’t so easy to use. There have been other Online Pinboards sprouting up: We Heart It – I find this to be more Gen Y, fashiony & younger, Pinboard – this is not free and labels itself as ‘Social Bookmarking for Introverts’.
This week there has been a flurry of interest in Pinterest as a retail and marketing tool. The key for businesses using social media and building their online presence is to build their authority and connect with their customers. Pinterest makes this easy to do and share!
Pinterest easily integrates with Twitter and Facebook, for me integrations is the key to any marketing activity. I think tools like this make ‘Social’ easier to integrate but also much more important to businesses than perhaps they are treating it now.
Apps for iPhone have been available for at least 6 months but you could not ‘Pin’ until the new ‘Pin’ app was released January 2012 at a cost of 99c. The iPad ‘Pin’ App was released January 2012 and costs 99c. The Android App was released December 2011. I find the iPhone App limiting but I am sure they are working on it. Apps just complete the experience and cater to the mobilisation of the user.
The infographic below is informative, not only does it help people understand Pinterest, but it shows that Social is driving more traffic than Search (not surprising is it though?):
Happy Pinning and Enjoy the new tools!