To those of you who lead "the Pinteresting life," you've contributed to a phenomenon that is certainly putting its clicks where the hype is. By that I mean, Pinterest is a two-year old cultural sensation that is borderline causing dependency among its users and the rabid audiences they're developed. This rapid fire network has pinned itself to a rocket with estimated unique viewership ascending 429% from September to December 2011...and I'm not even sure if the sky's the limit here.
For those who are unfamiliar with the fledgling community, Pinterest is a effective marriage of social bookmarking and visual curation with an extremely fervent user base. Essentially, people create a series of pinboards for areas of interest where they pin relevant snapshots with commentary to serve as both a reminder for later reference and also as a tour guide for visitors to learn more about each object.
Many consumer brands are also experimenting with Pinterest, using pinboards to present complementary products, ideas, and imagery to inspire consumers to visualize and remix new possibilities. From fashion to interior design and home to retail to entertainment, brands are using Pinterest to thoughtfully assemble a curated lifestyle. And, they're packaged for the social and mobile web and optimized for driving actions as part Facebook's new frictionless sharing ecosystem.
Some initial brands to watch include:
- Whole Foods
- Martha Stewart
- Better Homes and Garden
- Real Simple
- west elm
- Bergdorf Goodman
- Today Show
- Travel Channel
In addition to soaring traffic, Pinterest is also rising as a bona fide referrer of notable Web traffic. According to a new report published by Shareabholic, Pinterest drove greater traffic than LinkedIn, Google Plus, Reddit, and Youtube...combined. Additionally, Pinterest was just .01% shy of tying Twitter for the 4th spot and .02% behind Google, which currently sits in 3rd place.
It should be noted, that Facebook is clearly the dominant player here, accounting for 26.4% of all referring traffic with StumbleUpon sitting far behind, but firmly in second position.
No report can be fully appreciated at face value. The data as packaged is extremely flattering. Shareaholic based its findings on the aggregated data from over 200,000 publishers that reach 260 million + unique monthly visitors. Publishers using Shareaholic are not reflective of worldwide internet web trends or everyday activity, but they do provide a relevant snapshot of the digital lifestyle within the social web.
What's most remarkable is that Pinterest is still an invitation-only network. This of course lends to its desirability and mystique. Certainly, as anticipation builds coupled with creative and compelling use cases that continue to emerge, Pinterest shows only signs of remaining pinteresting and relevant to visualized + curated storytelling and driving meaningful clicks for some time to come.
So what are your thoughts? What do you love about Pinterest? Are you a brand finding success or looking for guidance? Share your stories, experiences and questions below...