Where Does Pinterest fit in?

The time has come for something new in the Social Media world; after all we are already 9 days into 2012.  What will the hot craze of 2012 be?  All signs are pointing to Pinterest being that next big thing.

What is Pinterest?

Pinterest is a vision board-styled social photo sharing website and app where users can create and manage theme-based image collections.  Pinterest plans to connect everyone in the world through shared tastes and the “things” they find interesting.  The idea is for each user to create and label pins that go on specific boards under many different categories.  Once uploaded or shared on Pinterest, the images become known as Pins.

At fist this might seem pointless, but think about the possibilities.  What if you are a bride to be and you can completely replace the three-ring wedding binder.  What if you are a college student and you want to create a shopping list of things you need for school.  Think about if you like to cook as a hobby, and now you can follow other culinary hobbyist and share recipes.  The possibilities are endless.

The Social Angle

The question might be, where does the social part of Pinterest come into play?  That’s actually the fun and easy part.  It’s as simple as finding a good pin, leaving a comment, liking it, maybe repining it to your own board.  You can then head over to the Pinners profile and follow their Boards.  You can also Tweet or share your pins on Facebook.  Pins can be pictures or videos, want to learn how to sew or skateboard?  I bet there’s a tutorial for it.

SEO?

The next question then is where does this fit into the SEO world, it is obviously a great tool to share, and its live in the Social Media world, however if you have a small business will it work to increase your SEO?  With Pinterest being on the hot list for social networks and cracking the top 10 list for social networks (while still being invite only) some peoples first instinct might be this is the next great free SEO tool, but not so fast.

So far the trend seems that you can promote your small business, however do so in small doses and with caution.  Pinterest users frown upon spam, who doesn’t, I don’t even like the food.  You won’t get banned if you simply load your boards with products from your business, however if you want to be taken serious, you will have to contribute to the community, which can help to build your brand by linking and connecting with people that share your companies style.  Be creative when using Pinterest for promotion and it might become your friend.  The jury is still out on where the service will fall into place in the SEO world.

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