Pinterest was one of our “Six Social Networks You’re Not Using to Their Full Potential” last week, and although we’re social media early adopters here at Vital, we hadn’t spent much time exploring the virtual pinboard site ourselves. I decided to give it a whirl and see what kind of potential it has for social media marketing, and give you a little tutorial on setting up your own pinboard. Hope it’s helpful!
First of all, you need to be invited to use Pinterest. If you want an invite, shoot an email to your most stylish female friends, or anyone planning a wedding. There’s probably a good chance they’re using it already, and they can invite you. (Pinterest seems to be very much still a girls’ club, but I think as it gains cred as a sharing space for design, photography and art, we’ll see the demographics even out).
You’ll need to set up an account. You can choose to link with your Facebook or Twitter account or leave it separate. You’ll create a user name and password, and then Pinterest will prompt you to select from some areas of interest (Design, Architecture, Film/TV, Women’s Fashion, etc.)
Once you select these, Pinterest will automatically set you up to follow some users in those categories. If you set up your account through Facebook, it will also add any of your Facebook friends who also have their Facebook and Pinterest accounts linked. You can always unfollow these users later.
The next step is to create your pinboards. Pinterest will prompt you to create five boards (you can have as many as you want, this is just to get started). You can categorize these any way you like. I made one for design inspiration, one for fashion, one for DIY projects and one for books I’m reading. Next, you’ll want to add a “Pin It” button to your bookmarks tool bar. In Firefox and Chrome, all you have to do is open your bookmarks and drag and drop the “Pin It” button onto the toolbar. You can now use this button as you’re surfing around the web, to “pin” things to your pinboards. When you find something you want to pin, just click the button. Pinterest will open up a page asking which item on the page you want to pin and which board it should be pinned to. The whole interface works very smoothly, and only interrupts your Web browsing for a few seconds.