Pinterest – The Beautiful Social Media

Pinterest is the newest big Social Media phenomenon after Facebook and Twitter. Although the beta version of Pinterest was launched in March 2010 which operated on an invitation-only basis, it eventually opened to everyone only in August 2012. The interest in Pinterest has been so great that it has become the fastest website in history to break through the 10 million unique visitor mark which was reported in January 2012.

When you visit the Pinterest website, what strikes you straightaway is the imagery. It is just full of beautiful images which you could not imagine existed. There are pictures posted of everything but mainly of places, clothing, food, babies and cute animals. But it is not just limited to these. The current statistics from Pinterest states the most popular pins to be in the order of Food and Drinks, DIY and Crafts, Home Decor, Women’s Fashion, Hair and Beauty and other categories. In short, Pinterest has been taken to heart by the female population. Some estimates suggest the proportion of female users to range anything between 72-96% of total Pintrest users.

So how is Pinterest similar to or different from Facebook and Twitter you may ask. Imagine Pinterest to be at one extreme of image-to-text scale and Twitter at the other while Facebook is somewhere in the middle. In Pinterest there are features just like in Facebook and Twitter that make them social such as the ability to follow, like, share and comment on other users material, which in the case of Pinterest are only the images. The more powerful the image, the more interest you will provoke in visitors to your profile which in turn will result in your profile attracting more followers. As In other social media platforms, followers can be converted to customers.

So, if you have never been on Pinterest, this is how it works. Everything on Pinterest is organised around images. You can pin your images on pinboards which you can create around whatever category you choose. For instance you can create a board on your hobbies, events, businesses, travel, fashions, foods etc. You can even repin other users images you to one of your own boards.

If an image is liked enough, there is a great opportunity for it to go viral. Just imagine the effect that would have on your website in terms of the traffic it would attract if one or more of your images linked to your website went viral!

However, one of the major disadvantages of Pinterest must be finding attractive images to post regularly. Unlike Twitter and Facebook where you can conduct your social interaction with words, you cannot do this on Pinterest without first posting an image. To, overcome this issue, you can post images from third party sites such as Google and Flickr. You must always post images that are relevant to your pinboard and you must adhere to the copyright of the image you pin.

Just as in other social media, if you show interest in someone by following or liking, they are most likely to return the favour. And if those you follow are interested in your niche and they followed you back then you have accomplished what people in internet marketing strive to do, which is to get targeted traffic.

Images are very powerful and emotive objects to humans and therefore a great potential exists to monetize them. The easiest way is to attach affiliate links to the images. Unfortunately from internet marketers’ point of view, this practice is frowned upon by Pinterest who have been known to alter the affiliate links to their own advantage. This practice by Pinterest could potentially land them in deep legal waters.

Unlike words which are plenty and readily available, images are restrictive but more importantly they are subject to copyright laws. Certain websites have opted out of having their images pinned on Pinterest by deploying a special meta tag that was released by Pinterest. This puts further limitations on finding attractive and unique images that are readily available.

All social media are evolving entities, including Pinterest. Perhaps it will adapt and evolve into something different in the future. However for now, it presents an enormous opportunity for internet marketer to do business on Pinterest.

Pinterest, as part of the overall internet marketing strategy could make a significant contribution to your online business. It is yet another viable source to make money online.