Pinterest, described by its creators as a visual bookmarking utility, is the latest social community flavour to hit the block. Launched a mere 2-years ago this month, Pinterest aims to fill the growing niche for digital scrapbookers who crave something between 140-character Tweets and traditional long-form blog posts.
Curiosity has risen steadily (in the shape of a hockey stick) with a reported 11.7 million unique monthly visitors in January 2012 alone, up from 418,000 unique visitors in May 2011 —a staggering 2702.2% increase in unique visitor traffic during a relatively short 8-month period.
A Site For Lululemon Athletica Toting Soccer Moms?
Pinterest’s user demographics are also quite interesting: currently 68.2% of visitors are women; 27.4% of which are between the ages of 25 and 34; 50% of users have children; 28% have an annual household income of $100k or more.
The endlessly scrolling pages are filled with beautifully curated photographs: dinner
entrées, desert recipes, pricey shoes, the latest Coach handbags and more. A special “gifts” drop-down menu allows you to browse products at various price points (retail prices are pinned to the corner of images), perfect for weddings and birthday parties.
Oh, and if you want conclusive proof of Pinterest’s female-centric audience base try searching for, say, Keith Urban, arguably the quintessential male heartthrob for the 25 to 34 set and you’ll see what I’m talking about.
The Globe And Mail’s culture columnist Russell Smith recently called Pinterest, “a vast city of beautiful mutes” and went on to lament of the site’s somewhat underwhelming “repin” functionality,
“…some people immediately repinned some of my images. Great! And that’s it. That’s all that happens. I did not feel the satisfaction that I am guessing I am supposed to. I didn’t really feel that I was involved with communication. Maybe I am just too verbal.
Actually, most posts on Pinterest are “repins” – that is, they are taken from someone else on Pinterest. So there are communication and community at work. I’m sure the motivations of the posters are genuinely generous desires to share ideas for how to make a prettier world. But there is also of course ego and competition.”
The “repins” incidentally are similar in function to Tumblr’s “reblog” feature, which make it incredibly easy to share (that is, repurpose) posts, but perhaps a tad difficult for Google’s search indexing algorithms.
Pinterest may very well be the place for the gluten-free-diet-preaching-Lululemon-wearing soccer moms and diehard Keith Urban fans, but also for anyone else looking for creative inspiration and fun. In fact it’s the perfect destination for that 15-minute mid-afternoon attention-deficit satisfying snack, in between Facebooking, texting, or whatever else it is that turns your social media crank.