Ever wonder how to use Pinterest? Or why, as a site owner or blogger, you should?
Pinterest is one of the more fascinating new social networks to come along in a while. In Pinterest, they make no bones in catering to the mindset of the internet users who seem to cater to the imagery of the web.
If you’re a Facebook user, you know what I mean as more and more you see accounts splattering out images with funny words, than words themselves.
Imagery is the way to go sometimes and I think I might write the rest of this article as text in an image!
How To Use Pinterest
Using Pinterest is a fairly simple and straight forward approach. Like any social website, you can create an account in any number of ways. From using your Facebook, Twitter or other social account, to simply creating an account tied to an email address. (As simple as it seems, I avoid tying things into my own social accounts. When something goes afoul with the target site, you at least don’t have to worry about what other site account info might also be compromised.)
Then once you have an account, you can start surfing the site, which is pretty intuitive, or start “Pinning” images.
When you sign up, it will probably ask you to create boards. A Pinterest Board is merely a categorized slot to put pics. Folks break up boards by subject content. My site has TV, Movie, Books and Consumer boards. I try to keep it simple.
I’d suggest the same for you. I’ve seen some pretty busy accounts that have so many boards, I just quit looking. For this site, I tend to post images from articles to my boards. If the imagery interests the “pin surfer,” then maybe they’ll follow the link and come by. (Hint to site owners: They do.)
That’s the basics on using the site.
As you browse Pinterest, you can find things to “like,” comment on or even repin to your own account. (I have a “cool things” board for the repins.)
Why Should Bloggers Use Pinterest?
Web surfers are notorious for hitting up a site and skipping out once they’ve caught the title and the first few words or sentences or highlighted ideas in a post. Spending on average, 10 to 30 seconds per page or site visit, but don’t feel too bad. It’s not that uncommon. I’ve tested user focus groups on Brusimm and it was shocking to see someone load a page, scroll to the bottom and click the source link. (After all that work crafting an article, I wanted to strangle some of my test surfers!)
And if you write way too lengthy prose, the overwhelming intellect being offered is rarely ever appreciated or explored unless you pepper it with images to get them to scroll down or highlight catch words or phrases (<- like that) to let them know there’s something interesting going on down here.
But Pinterest does away with the pretense of trying to abide by the “300 word minimum count” recommendation for good SEO from Google and just presents itself in the form of categorized imagery. Lots of images. And if you had not noticed, most social networks these days are peppered more with links to imagery than words. Or images with words.
In other words, screw the content, it’s pictures web surfers want! It’s images that help surfers wrap their mind around content. Any good presentation (from my work days of lecturing) presented information on multiple levels, words, sound and images.
And on the web, the imagery part has definitely caught on. Heck, Pinterest is my 3rd most prolific source of traffic for Brusimm. So what’s the trick or how can you best use Pinterest? Here’s a few approaches I’ve seen.
Know your target audience. Does Pinterest serve up your target audience? Pinterest already has over 10 million users! Estimates say that 80% of Pin users are women (Kind of explains the oodles of fashion pics in Pin!) and many users live in the Midwest. Also, users seem to like DIY and recipe pins.
So how do you take advantage of this latest modern wave I humorously refer to as PicBook?
Publicize your account on your site. Get on Pinterest and interact a little. Like, repin and have some fun. Unlike some other social networks, it’s a bit easier to interact on Pinterest because of the medium. You don’t have to sink a ton of time scouring words to know what it is you’re dealing with or take chances sharing what seems like a good title. And there are no BS titles to trick you either. Pictures are direct and to the point.
One thing I’d like to suggest, and maybe this is more personal preference than real wisdom but when making your different Pinterest Boards, don’t go crazy! There’s a few pinners out there that have so many boards, I stopped trying to sort through them. I have a few focused boards under my primary Pinterest site and that’s that. (Did you catch the references to them earlier in this article?)
The other thing I happen to like is something relatively new and that’s secret boards. Now you can create boards that the public can’t see. And I like that.
The reason I like the secret boards is that now if I snap a pic with my phone, I can upload my new pic to my secret board. Then later, it’s there for me to either download for inclusion into an article I was thinking of writing, hotlink to it in an article via the embedding function Pinterest offers or just transfer it to the related ‘interesting’ board the image belongs in. (Hmm, they’ve modified the process of how to embed images since I last did it and I’m skipping that part for now.)
Pinterest is a great tool or just plain fun site. And if you pin wisely, it will help generate traffic for your website, and is a bit more fun than some of the other options out there. Visually speaking that is.