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Pinterest, I didn't get it.
Posted on March 21st 2012
I'm always looking for the next angle on internet marketing and ways to make inbound marketing better. While I'm rarely the first person to find a hot, new idea, I can always count on my wife and kids to beat me over the head with the latest and greatest developments. That's how it was with Pinterest. Suddenly the entire family - you'll guess age range and genders in a moment - is raving about this or that cool product that so-and-so likes... and pinning it. They show me. I didn't get it.
I get the concept, Pinterest’s simple idea of curating product images that catch your fancy makes sense. In fact, it so easy to replicate that I'm asking myself why didn’t veteran photo sharing services like Flikr think of it? Sure enough Flickr is following Pinterest’s lead, but is it too little too late? ... another blog, another time.
A big part of why I didn't get it was that all the things they liked had no appeal to me. So I asked my clients - who are mostly B2B, schools and small business marketers. They're telling me that they just don’t see Pinterest as a factor in their markets. Vindication. OK the world still makes some sense... but these dichotomies always peak my curiosity. Why are some people so hot on Pinterest and others seem unphased? Looking at this data from Quantcast, the answer comed into focus. It’s pretty clear that Pinterest has its own niche:
The same crew that watches TLC’s “Say Yes to The Dress” and the Home and Garden channel, women in their 20s and 30s, are Pinterest’s passionate followers.
So what if you’re a sports equipment retailer, home improvement center or travel agency? Is there a Pinterest alternative for you? You becha!
Manteresting and Gentlemint are filling the gap for more macho audiences looking to share photos of sports personalities, home improvement ideas and other more manly things. Manteresting in particular, targets the testosterone crowd, which, like recent ads for Dr. Pepper 10, bellows “not for women”. But as different as GQ is from Field & Stream, Gentlemint, is for the man of discerning taste and refinement.
For the Young and Young at Heart
Before there was Pinterest, there was We Heart It. This social sharing network has all the simplicity of Pinterest but boasts the youth factor that Tumblr has... and is slowly losing as its 24-45 audience grows. If you’re targeting teen girls or college-aged women, you can’t go wrong mingling with the young stylistas on We Heart It. Krush, is another teen oriented, share-the-luv site, where teens can post and share sports and lifestyle products their into, see what's trending with the crowd and preview what's coming next from hot brands catering to the teen segment.
For the World Traveler
You could share your travel photo-journal on Facebook, but like the days when you’d invite friends over to watch a slideshow of your camper experience last summer, it can get very boring very quickly. Fortunately,Wanderfly and the new social photo site Trippy are here to let jet-setters and world travelers share their experiences in Pinterest-like fashion. Travel destinations, tourism bureaus and hospitality industry marketers can put their destination nearby attractions in front of frequent travelers... the people who are most likely to look for vacation ideas.
For the Everyone Else
From movie mavens - Seenth.at - to Lady Gaga fans - LittleMonsters.com -, social photo sharing sites are popping up for almost every niche. Even Facebook ‘likes’ Friendsheet, an app that displays photos on its site in a Pinterest-like manner. And if you’re using WordPress as your blogging platform there’s a Pinterest-style theme for that, too.
Pinterest might not be right for you, but its impact on social photo sharing is sure to be felt for some time to come. Increasingly niche copy-cat sites will continue to sprout over the coming months. As an inbound marketer, make sure your website is prepped for social photo sharing before you rush into using any of these sites. The last thing you want is a prospect putting in a link to your website from Pinterest or one of the other emerging interest-sharing networks and seeing a message like this: