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Pinterest is so hot right now. This little social media platform de rigueur is enjoying some dizzying success on the virtual panorama. And now social media marketing pundits are advising the likes of Facebook, et al to move aside.
One C90’er reckons if he had a dollar for every time he heard the words ‘Move over Facebook’, he’d have enough dosh to merely purchase his way to total world domination. So are the pundits right?
Pinterest is an invite-only social media site that allows people to create their own virtual pinboards. They can ‘pin’ images from the internet under their own categories (‘jewelry’, ‘home’, ‘cars’). You gather followers and there’s a ‘like’ function, which builds up that connectivity with others, who then go on to share these photos.
And here’s where brands and marketers gleefully rub their hands together. Every time you click on an image, it will take you directly through to the website whence it came from. A recent Shareholic report claimed Pinterest drove more referral traffic to online retailers than Google+, YouTube, Reddit and LinkedIn combined. Ker-ching.
Now, a diverse range of companies, from Whole Foods to Etsy to General Electric, are already taking advantage of this wee feature, successfully leveraging their brands.
Pinterest was crowned TechCrunch’s Best New Startup of 2011, after it attracted more than 7 million unique visits last December – making the phenomenal jump from 1.68 million in September. Congratulations, Pinterest – you are now the fastest growing independent site to hit 10 million monthly unique visits in the history of the planet. No wonder marketers sat up and took notice.
To say people are hooked is somewhat of an understatement. Its appeal lies – and this certainly applies to its appeal as a marketing tool – in creativity and visual connection. As Pinterest co-founder, Ben Silbermann puts it, “Pinterest is a visual site, and a lot of people are visual by nature.”
It has even inspired copycat man-site, Gentlemint, a Pinterest-type platform for blokes who feel the latter is a bit too girly for rugged males such as themselves. (We still reckon ‘Gentlemint’ sounds a bit too polished for a rugged man-site.)
So should Facebook, et al be shaking in their boots?
This is a lovely little David and Goliath-type scenario, but successful niche social media platforms sites such as Pinterest are likely to build on their successes by integrating with and complimenting larger social media platforms rather than go head-to-head with them. And is success just may happen to elbows a few other secondary social media platforms out of the way in the process.
So in the meantime, consider making your brand Pinteresting.
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