It seems like there’s always a new social media site you need to be a part of. There was MySpace, but that’s gone by the wayside. Now everyone is on Facebook and Twitter. They are trying to make Google+ a necessary site, but so far, it’s a ghost town over there. Now, there’s Pinterest.
It might seem like this too is a passing fad, but I think Pinterest is here to stay… and I think it’s going to make a tremendous difference for the companies who utilize it. So, what is Pinterest?
Pinterest started as a social media site that was mainly occupied by women. The premise behind the site is simple – it’s basically an online bulletin board. Users posts pictures and links on the boards and then other users “re-pin” those links on their board and so on. What began as boards titled “My Dream Wedding” or “Baby’s Room” sharing pictures of dresses and color swatches has evolved into a legitimate tool for sharing your business with tons of unique users.
I too was hesitant about this taking off. Way back when this was a more individualized site (as opposed to business centric) I resisted joining, but lately I’ve begun to see that this site it taking off, and fast.
So, what’s the secret. Why does this site work?
The Globe and Mail has a theory, “Pinterest wants its users to do three things: consume, create and share content. The more users consume, create and share, the faster Pinterest reaches its business objectives and dominates its market….” Unlike other sites, Pinterest does not require a lot of time or effort of the part of the consumer. In fact, it requires minimal effort to see something you like and “re-pin,” no commentary required.
And that brings us back your business and how to make Pinterest work for you. Lands’ End Canvas recently introduced a “Pin it” button on their site. Now users who view their clothing can purchase or “like” on Facebook as usual, but also add it to their Pinterest and have their friends view it… who may in turn go to a clothing site they never visited before to see where that cute sweater is from. Imagine the possibilities for your business – adding a “Pin it” button, or creating a board titled “New Products” and watching how quickly the information disseminates.
The bottom line is that there seems to be no downside: Free marketing? Check. Minimal effort? Check. New business? Check.