Pinterest the Best Social Networking Site for Retailers

Birgit Nazarian, Writer, specializing in IT and HR | 2/29/2012 | 41 comments

Birgit Nazarian
Ten and a half million (and growing exponentially) -- that's about how many Pinterest accounts there are currently. If you've signed up, you know what I am talking about; if you haven't, you should. Pinterest is one of the hottest new social media forums on the Web and drives more referrals than Google+, YouTube, and LinkedIn, according to January 2012 statistics.

Users can search from a menu of standard topics including architecture, fashion, fitness, and technology. Those topics are organized on boards that resemble the push-pin bulletin boards you might have in your office or craft room. Users pin or upload images of their own or browse images on other users' boards for ideas and inspiration. Images include links to the original site. The person pinning or uploading images can enter descriptions, using keywords to make his or her image easily searchable on Pinterest, and then see comments and feedback from followers.

Trust me, it's cooler than it sounds -- and crazy addictive. You may have heard rumors or read articles that suggest that Pinterest's users are primarily women who craft, bake, or seek inspiration for their wedding plans. That's partly true, but I ask you this: Why do the US Army, General Electric, and many other organizations and brands that aren't oozing with estrogen have accounts? Pinterest is beginning to attract a larger and larger base of global users to its unique platform.

The fast-growing Palo Alto startup is still evolving, so it's not perfect yet. In an email response addressing some questions I had, Aaron Franklin, Pinterest's Community Specialist, told me that the search function is currently being rebuilt and will definitely improve. Currently, you can Google "[business name] Pinterest" to see what brands are represented or have been pinned by users on the site.

So how does a retailer enter this new community successfully? A good place to begin would be the Pinterest blog, which has stories about retailers and users who leverage Pinterest to grow and gain a wider audience. Because Pinterest is mostly used for inspiration, planning, and sharing ideas, the message or products you wish to convey to your followers and to the Pinterest community must be easily represented by engaging images. A careful strategy should be planned for launching a page and creating boards:

  • Don't spam; be selective about what you pin. The beauty of Pinterest is the lack of clutter; you don't want to overwhelm your followers.

  • Focus on inspiring followers, not just selling products -- that's what your Website is for. Pinterest is for creating goodwill and buzz. The goal is to get users excited on Pinterest so they buy through your traditional channels.

  • Follow other users and "like" pins of users who might be customers or share the same interests. As with any other social networking site, you want to find the influencers of the group. The right influencers will do your marketing work for you if they like your product.

As with other social media sites such as Facebook and YouTube, copyright violations remain a concern, but Pinterest is finding ways to address the issue. Companies can prevent their sites from being pinned with a Pin It button by embedding a small piece of code.

Privacy concerns aside, Pinterest offers plenty of benefits for companies, especially retailers wanting to build referrals, increase their following, and boost their image. It's time to start pinning!

View Comments: Newest First | Oldest First | Threaded View
Page 1 / 5   >   >>
white.space   Pinterest the Best Social Networking Site for Retailers   3/31/2012 9:07:03 PM
Re: I'm listening
Thank you for your comment: "It's a big issue and it's getting very hard to control your photos, comments, friend lists, contributions to the social network. At the same time, it's something we seem to need, being able to share and participate in this kind of social network." I can not agree with you more.

I just shared a story about my baby pictures being on the Internet because an aunt tagged me; if you think elderly relatives showing your baby pics to perfect strangers are bad, wait tlll they show up all over your profiile. Yet, as you have pointed out, even if we know the pitfalls  - and if I may name name, Facebook has an atrocious privacy policy I believe - we still share.  I think online social networking is becoming a substitution for at least some of the real thing. 
User Ranking: Blogger
nasimson   Pinterest the Best Social Networking Site for Retailers   3/5/2012 11:59:03 AM
Some questions.

My question here is, is it just for the retailers or common people can create an account there easily without reference?

About the privacy issues, other social networking sites do not have that enhanced private policies such as Facebook so what about Pinterest?

batye   Pinterest the Best Social Networking Site for Retailers   3/2/2012 5:08:11 AM
Re: We have given permission
good and interesting point 

could not agree more...

this day big offender's of privacy in Canada is google and facebook

Privacy Commissioner of Canada have it hands full...

myself I do not expect any privacy on the internet, unless I convince my wife join Amish Community near our town...
bnazarian   Pinterest the Best Social Networking Site for Retailers   3/1/2012 9:30:51 AM
Re: I'm listening
@white.space,

There are so many issues with social media, half the time I am impacted by the stark reality of how much we participants are being used and played like pawns in this universe of data mines and networks. So many social networks make decisions for us without our permission, linking one network to another, piggybacking off each other. 

Then there is our personal content. No longer personal or ours, used without permission. The reason most people don't complain is that they are getting so accostumed to being part of this kind of sharing and interaction they/we ignore the traditional "rules" of respect of privacy and ownership. It's a big issue and it's getting very hard to control your photos, comments, friend lists, contributions to the social network. At the same time, it's something we seem to need, being able to share and participate in this kind of social network. Social networking machines exploit the social needs humans have. I am torn over it, all the time.
User Ranking: Blogger
bnazarian   Pinterest the Best Social Networking Site for Retailers   3/1/2012 9:16:12 AM
Re: Where did it come from?
@tekedge and impactnow,

Where is Pinterest suddenly coming from? I believe it has to do with some statistics that were gathered from January about the site's explosive growth and then with those numbers in hand, several tech and marketing blogs did articles on the site. 

Analysts who keep track of those kinds of trends for investers, etc. were astonished by the results and then the excitement ensued. 

At first I was resistant, I received an invitation from a friend (and I was turned off by the whole "invitation" tactic - I knew that getting one didn't make me special at all, just networked) and I didn't respond to it at first. But once the Timeline feature of Facebook added the Pinterest plug-in, I could see friends' Pinterest boards or recent pins and my curiousity was piqued. 

When I visited the site the minimalist interface appealed to me. I am social network weary myself. Friends have brought me into all the major social networks but I don't "maintain" my profile too well in all of them. The constant updates and newsfeeds aren't present on Pinterest. I pin and then at my leisure, a day or a month later I can see who liked what, who shares my love for Antoni Gaudi architecture, jicama salad or Smartwool socks. It's kind of girly I guess, but guys have boards with titles like "My Favorite Beers" or places they have travelled, etc.

It's also growing so fast because of Facebook and Twitter. Since I had a Pinterest account, when I made my peace with Facebook over the timeline recently, a plugin was automatically added to my Facebook Timeline. In that way friends check it out and word spreads.

I also have heard that Pinterest once plugged into your Facebook account sends invitations to your friends - but I am not sure it's true - I get Pinterest followers from my Facebook friend list slowly over time. I got an invitation from a friend after they insisted face to face that I check it out. Not anything that seemed unsolicited from Pinterest. 

 

 

 
User Ranking: Blogger
white.space   Pinterest the Best Social Networking Site for Retailers   2/29/2012 11:29:17 PM
We have given permission
@Taimoor: Thank you for your comment. Unfortunately, we have given Facebook permission to use our pictures. Its part of the social networking site's TOS, and privacy policy. 

Now why we are not being paid, is a very interesting question. Facebook is making a lot of money from UGC - content which they are not really generating. Their overheads are roughly $1 a user per year; so will Facebook stop thrusting advertising on me if I pay them that much, and double the amount so they have a 100 per cent profit? 
User Ranking: Blogger
Taimoor Zubair   Pinterest the Best Social Networking Site for Retailers   2/29/2012 11:22:29 PM
Re: All of us are stock photographers now
"Sponsored stories keep coming up with my friends' pictures all the time.."

I haven't seen this happening but it does seem a great violation of copyrights. If Facebook is making money out of my photos, why am I not being paid for it :)

white.space   Pinterest the Best Social Networking Site for Retailers   2/29/2012 9:34:50 PM
All of us are stock photographers now
@Ivan: Thank you for pointing the privacy policy out. My interest in Pinterest just came down by quite a few notches.

Having said that, can't say I am too surprised. That is the kinda right Facebook exerts on our pictures as well. It also uses our pictures for advertising. Sponsored stories keep coming up with my friends' pictures all the time.. thanks to social media, we are now models and stock photographers as well, on top of being publishers... :)
User Ranking: Blogger
white.space   Pinterest the Best Social Networking Site for Retailers   2/29/2012 9:27:38 PM
Boom or not
@Dave: Pinterest is already worth that much? Whoa. Now add in the Facebook valuation to the mix - is the platform, any platform, really worth that much? Can all those billions really buy enough user lock in and stickiness? Think Excite, Lycos, My Space, Friendster.. Unfortunately we cannot think about Unthink or Diaspora - the supposed Facebook killers.. they have sizzled off to extinction looks like even before they could take of.. 

Not exactly a social media company, but I am also concered a bit about Apple's valuation. The company crossed $500 billion today, and the price looks a bit inflated. Especially amid all the concerns about Foxconn. 

Are we heading towards a pre-2000 era giddiness with social media?
User Ranking: Blogger
white.space   Pinterest the Best Social Networking Site for Retailers   2/29/2012 9:21:10 PM
I'm listening
Are enterprises listening enough? And how can they proactively act (as opposed to merely react) to all the real time buzz that is going around?

A company called Tello recently raised a Series A funding - they are a SaaS and mobile application company that notfies companies of reviews users provide on Tello. This is interesting - but users have to write on Tello first, and I do not see this scaling up to include multinational companies with zillions of customers anytime soon. 

Which brings me back to the question. Are we listening enough to what our customers are saying about us? And are we integrating the feedback into our corporate strategy?

 
User Ranking: Blogger
Page 1 / 5   >   >>


The blogs and comments posted on EnterpriseEfficiency.com do not reflect the views of TechWeb, EnterpriseEfficiency.com, or its sponsors. EnterpriseEfficiency.com, TechWeb, and its sponsors do not assume responsibility for any comments, claims, or opinions made by authors and bloggers. They are no substitute for your own research and should not be relied upon for trading or any other purpose.

More Blogs from Birgit Nazarian
Birgit Nazarian   6/4/2012   19 comments
Jumping out of bed and rushing to the office is a bad way to start your work, according to scientists studying cognitive psychology. Think about the typical morning routine for countless ...
Birgit Nazarian   5/21/2012   12 comments
Yup, you read that correctly. Every mom should get a tattoo while she's pregnant. No, not an anchor on the arm or a butterfly on the small of the back. This tattoo would go right on the ...
Birgit Nazarian   5/3/2012   16 comments
Career promotion in IT is often based on technical ability, but the higher up the ladder you climb, the more important soft skills become.
Birgit Nazarian   5/2/2012   40 comments
Education technology advocates here in the US are sure to be feeling a surge of envy after news was released recently about Poland's ambitious digital school program approved just weeks ...
Birgit Nazarian   4/10/2012   14 comments
With many public K-12 school districts cutting "extras" such as traditional field trips out of the annual budget, teachers have to come up with creative ways to keep students engaged in ...
Latest Archived Broadcast
We talk with Bernard Golden about accelerating application delivery in the cloud.
On-demand Video with Chat
Register for this video discussion to learn how tablets can provide true business usability and productivity.
4/29/2014 - Join Dell and Intel for an interactive discussion about implementing, refining and improving your virtual environment. Specifically we’ll discuss pain points virtualization can solve and those that it can create and how to prevent them.
E2 IT Migration Zones
IT Migration Zone - UK
Why PowerShell Is Important
Reduce the Windows 8 Footprint for VDI
Rethinking Storage Management
IT Migration Zone - FR
SQL Server : 240 To de mémoire flash pour votre data warehouse
Quand Office vient booster les revenus Cloud et Android de Microsoft
Windows Phone : Nokia veut davantage d'applications (et les utilisateurs aussi)
IT Migration Zone - DE
Cloud Computing: Warum Unternehmen trotz NSA auf die „private“ Wolke setzen sollten
Cloud Computing bleibt Wachstumsmarkt – Windows Azure ist Vorreiter
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Enterprise Efficiency Twitter Feed
Site Moderators Wanted
Enterprise Efficiency is looking for engaged readers to moderate the message boards on this site. Engage in high-IQ conversations with IT industry leaders; earn kudos and perks. Interested? E-mail:
moderators@enterpriseefficiency.com
Dell's Efficiency Modeling Tool
The major problem facing the CIO is how to measure the effectiveness of the IT department. Learn how Dell’s Efficiency Modeling Tool gives the CIO two clear, powerful numbers: Efficiency Quotient and Impact Quotient. These numbers can be transforma¬tive not only to the department, but to the entire enterprise.

Read the full report
The State of Enterprise Efficiency in the Virtual Era: Virtualization – Smart Approaches to Maximize Gains
Virtualization is a presence in nearly all enterprise data centers. But not all companies are using it to its best effect. Learn the common characteristics of success, what barriers companies face, and how to get the most from your efforts.

Read the full report
Informed CIO: Dollars & Sense: Virtual Desktop Infrastructure
Cut through the VDI hype and get the full picture -- including ROI and the impact on your Data Center -- to make an informed decision about your virtual desktop infrastructure deployments.

Read the full report
SPONSORED BY DELL
CASE STUDIES
EBOOKS
PUBLIC SECTOR RESOURCES
VIDEOS
WHITE PAPERS
WINDOWS SERVER 2012 RESOURCES
A Video Case Study – Translational Genomics Research Institute
e2 Video


On the Case
TGen IT: Where We're Going Next

7|11|12   |   08:12   |   10 comments


Now that TGen has broken new ground in genomic research by using Dell's storage, cloud, and high-performance computing solutions, the company discusses what will come next for it and for personalized medicine.
On the Case
Better Care Through Better Communications

6|6|12   |   02:24   |   12 comments


The achievements of the TGen/Dell project could improve how all people receive healthcare, because they are creating ways to improve end-to-end communication of medical data.
On the Case
TGen IT: Where We Are Now

5|15|12   |   06:58   |   5 comments


TGen is breaking new ground in genomic research by using Dell's storage, cloud, and high-performance computing solutions.
On the Case
TGen IT: Where We Were

4|27|12   |   06:45   |   10 comments


The Translational Genomics Research Institute wanted to save lives, but its efforts were hobbled by immense computing challenges related to collecting, processing, sharing, and storing enormous amounts of data.
On the Case
1,200% Faster

4|18|12   |   02:27   |   12 comments


Through their partnership, Dell and TGen have increased the speed of TGen’s medical research by 1,200 percent.
On the Case
IT May Improve Children's Chances of Survival

4|17|12   |   02:12   |   8 comments


IT is helping medical researchers reach breakthroughs in a way and pace never seen before.
On the Case
Medical Advances in the Cloud

4|10|12   |   1:25   |   5 comments


TGen and Dell are pushing the boundaries of computing, and harnessing the power of the cloud to improve healthcare.
On the Case
TGen: Living the Mission

4|9|12   |   2:25   |   3 comments


TGen's CIO puts the organizational mission at the heart of everything the IT staff does.
On the Case
TGen Speeding Up Biomedical Research to Save More Lives

4|5|12   |   1:59   |   8 comments


The Translational Genomics Research Institute is revamping its computing to improve speed, storage, and collaboration – and, most importantly, to save lives.
On the Case
Computing Power Helping to Save Children's Lives

3|28|12   |   2:13   |   3 comments


The Translational Genomics Institute’s partnership with Dell is enabling them to treat kids with neuroblastoma more quickly and save more lives.
Tom Nolle
The Big Reason to Use Office

3|18|14   |   02:24   |   19 comments


Office and personal productivity tools come in a first-class and coach flavor set, but what makes the difference is primarily little things that most users won't encounter. What's the big issue in using something other than Office, and can you get around it?
E2 Editors
SPONSORED: Mobile Security — A Use Case

3|4|14   |   04:27   |   6 comments


New mobile security solutions can accommodate a wide array of needs, including those of a complex university environment.
Tom Nolle
Killing Net Neutrality Might Save You Money

1|16|14   |   2:13   |   11 comments


The DC Court of Appeals voided most of the Neutrality Order, and whatever it might mean for the Internet overall, it might mean better and cheaper Internet VPNs for businesses.
Tom Nolle
The Internet of Everythinguseful

1|10|14   |   2:18   |   19 comments


We really don't want an "Internet of Everything" but even building an Internet of Everythinguseful means setting some ground rules to insure there's value in the process and that costs and risks are minimized.
Tom Nolle
Maturing Google Chrome

12|30|13   |   2.18   |   25 comments


Google's Chrome OS has a lot of potential value and a lot of recent press, but it still needs something to make it more than a thin client. It needs cloud integration, it needs extended APIs via web services, and it needs to suck it up and support a hard drive.
Sara Peters
No More Cookie-Cutter IT

12|23|13   |   03.58   |   21 comments


Creating the right combination of technology, people, and processes for your IT organization is a lot like baking Christmas cookies.
Sara Peters
Smart Wigs Not a Smart Idea

12|5|13   |   3:01   |   46 comments


Sony is seeking a patent for wigs that contain computing devices.
Tom Nolle
Cloud in the Wild

12|4|13   |   02:23   |   15 comments


On a recent African trip I saw examples of the value of the cloud in developing nations, for educational and community development programs. We could build on this, but not only in developing economies, because these same programs are often under-supported even in first-world countries.
E2 Editors
SPONSORED: Is Malware Evading Your IPS?

11|18|13   |   03:16   |   4 comments


Intrusion prevention software is supposed to detect and block malware intrusions, but clever malware authors can evade your IPS in these five main ways.
Sara Peters
Where Have All the Mentors Gone?

9|27|13   |   3:15   |   38 comments


A good professional mentor can change your life for the better... but where do you find one?
Tom Nolle
SDN Wars & You Could Win

9|17|13   |   2:10   |   5 comments


VMware's debate with Cisco on SDN might finally create a fusion between an SDN view that's all about software and another that's all about network equipment. That would be good for every enterprise considering the cloud and SDN.
Ivan Schneider
The Future of the Smart Watch

9|12|13   |   3:19   |   39 comments


Wearing a bulky, oversized watch is good training for the next phase in wristwatches: the Internet-enabled, connected watch. Why the smartphone-tethered connected watch makes sense, plus Ivan demos an entirely new concept for the "smart watch."
Tom Nolle
Cutting Your Cloud Storage Costs

9|4|13   |   2:06   |   3 comments


Cloud storage costs are determined primarily by the rate at which files are changed and the possibility of concurrent access/update. If you can structure your storage use to optimize these factors you can cut costs, perhaps to zero.
Sara Peters
Do CIOs Need an IT Background?

8|29|13   |   2:11   |   23 comments


Most of the CIOs interviewed in the How to Become a CIO series did not start their careers as IT professionals. So is an IT background essential?
Ivan Schneider
The Internet Loves Birthdays

8|27|13   |   3:25   |   69 comments


The Internet has evolved into a machine for drumming up a chorus of "Happy Birthday" messages, from family, friends, friends of friends who you added on Facebook, random people that you circled on G+, and increasingly, automated bots. Enough already.