How To Be Pinteresting

Have you heard of Pinterest? By now you probably have.  Pinterest is a place to organize and share online images that you find interesting or inspiring. Once uploaded or shared on Pinterest, these images become known as Pins, which the user can place on customized, themed Boards. You can create Boards for any topic imaginable, from Baking to Yoga. The possibilities are endless. Beginning in March of 2010, Pinterest launched to a small group of 5000 people. The creator of Pinterest, Ben Silbermann, wrote a personal invitation to this first group offering his personal phone number for feedback. The photo based social media platform was only accessible by the users who were invited. I was invited to join in June 2011 and have been addicted since. On 10 August 2012, Pinterest was opened to everyone without an invitation.

Over the last few months you have probably heard about Pinterest quite a lot. The site’s popularity has exploded from 1.2 million users in August of 2011 to over 30 million today. But like any new social site, there’s always the question, “How does it work?” Have no fear. Read on and find out. 

For a lot of people Pinterest could just be a casual window shopping experience. You could just pin cool stuff all day long. Yet, Pinterest can be a really valuable tool to organize or plan for a specific purpose. For example, many people have ditched the mess of ripping pages out of magazines to store in a binder. Wedding planning has gone digital. Boards are created for each room in the house for decorating ideas. Artists create inspirational boards. Baking, cooking, and healthy recipe boards are popular. There are hundreds of thousands of boards for DIY projects with instruction. Because Boards can have multiple contributors, you can collaborate with your friends on a project. It makes it easy to keep everyone’s ideas and inspiration in one place.

Pinterest has created a “Pin It Button” that you can download to your web browser. Once installed in your browser, the “Pin It” button lets you grab an image from any website and add it to one of your pinboards. When you pin from a website, Pinterest automatically grabs the source link so it can credit the original creator.  If you find inspiration on the go, take a picture with your iPhone or Android and add it to your Boards with the mobile app. 

Pinterest is a social media network. This means that you’re not doing this alone. Find your friends by connecting your Facebook account and importing your email contact lists. Follow their boards to see what they are pinning. Chances are that you’re friends are interested in the same things. To find other Pinners, access the “Everything” drop-down menu and filter Boards by category. Since Pinterest is similar to twitter, you don’t have to follow Boards or people that you aren’t interested in, even if they are following you. Pinterest recently released the ability to select boards to be private. This is especially helpful when planning a surprise or if your husband to be is also on Pinterest. We don’t want him seeing that wedding dress. 

Pinterest plays nicely with your Facebook and Twitter account so that you can share your activity across your other platforms.