Whether you’re a social networking junkie or you don’t even know how to check your own email, you’ve probably heard about Pinterest. It skyrocketed into the virtual world in 2011 and has now become one of the top social networking websites. Learn the basics to discover what Pinterest can do for you.
What Is Pinterest?
Like other social networking sites, Pinterest provides a way for people to share information with their friends. The information exchange is primarily fueled by photos and images. Do you have a photo of your dream home? Pinterest is the place to share it.
How Does It Work?
Imagine if all the people in your neighborhood mounted large bulletin boards on their front doors. On your door, you would use tacks to pin up images of everything you like, such as clothing from fashion magazines, recipes and decorating ideas. If desired, you could jot down a short comment about everything you posted. Then, you could walk around and see all of your neighbors’ boards. If you liked something you saw, you could make a copy of one of the images and repin it on your own board. This scenario is exactly what Pinterest provides in an online environment, except your neighbors are any people with Pinterest accounts that you choose to follow.
How Do I Join?
Pinterest was launched as an invitation-only website, although that may change. To join Pinterest, talk to a friend who is a member and ask her to send you an online invitation, either through your email, Facebook or Twitter account. Alternatively, click “Request an Invite” on Pinterest’s homepage. You’ll receive instructions about how to proceed.
How Do I Use It?
When you first join Pinterest, the website will suggest a few other users you can “follow” just to get started. If you’re also a Facebook user, you’ll have the option to automatically follow all of your Facebook friends. Once you’ve browsed a few of the images, which are called pins, you should start pinning to your own boards. You can create as many boards as you like for any category you can dream of. Some examples might be “Fashion Ideas,” “Things I Want To Cook” or “Dream Vacation Locations.” Pinterest provides a few categories for boards to help you start.
Once you have a few boards, continue browsing your friends’ boards and find things you like. Either repin them to your boards or “like” them. Things you like will appear in a list separate from your boards. You can pin images from other peoples’ boards or anywhere on the Internet. Once you pin an image, it will automatically link back to its original location. For example, if you pin a food item you really like from a culinary website, anyone who sees the image on Pinterest can click on it to find the original recipe.
Why Should I Join?
People like Pinterest for various reasons. It will be what you make of it. You may find inspiration for creative pursuits like cooking, decorating, planning a wedding or art projects. You could use it to keep up with fashion trends among the people whose tastes you admire. It may provide a more efficient way than a search engine to find what you’re looking for because you can tailor it to your tastes and interests. For example, if you’re looking for some hair style ideas for a formal event, you can use Pinterest to see what your friends like, as opposed to doing a more general search through Google. In addition to being a source of inspiration, Pinterest can serve as a guide when you’re making purchasing decisions about brands and styles.
Should Businesses And Organizations Join?
Pinterest provides inherent benefits to businesses and organizations. If you’re representing a business and you pin intriguing images on your boards, your followers will probably circulate them on their own boards. But note that Pinterest’s developers encourage users from using the site exclusively for self-promotion. In the online community, the best way to promote your interests is to also promote others’. You’ll make friends and establish a stronger presence on Pinterest if you pin not only your own images but others you admire.
Will I Get Addicted?
You might, as this seems to be a trend among many Pinterest users. But how much you use it is entirely up to you. So pin away!
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