I spent the day at a conference where, in a panel about social media, the moderator mentioned Pinterest. Pinterest recently celebrated two years of existence and it hit 10 million unique monthly U.S. users faster than any site, ever (source). The moderator was wondering as to why it became so popular. So, I started thinking… why is it so popular?
People like things that make them happy. If people like Pinterest so much, does it mean that Pinterest makes them happy? Could be. When we look at someone (let’s take the speakers at my conference as an example), we take the message in on three levels:
- Visual – 55% (example: how the speaker is dressed, if he wears a tie or not…);
- Audio – 38% (example: the tone of his voice, is it shaking or clear…);
- Verbal – 7% (example: what he is actually saying, the content of his speech).
Obviously, we are visual beings and sight is one of our most important senses. Pinterest is filled with pretty things and I’ve seen and heard of people losing hours and hours there, searching through never ending images. Personally, my soft spot is travelling and I could look at pretty pictures of interesting or exotic destinations all day long.
I also like infografics a lot, especially those about internet and new media. With Pinterest, I can find those easily and now I see them in my feed without even looking. They usually have interesting data and I’ve used them for articles or presentations at my university. So, Pinterest not only helps me rest from my obligations (with a little bit of imaginary travelling), but it also helps me fulfill them! 😀
My friends like cooking. They adore the food porn you can find on Pinterest. Many food porn pictures have links that will lead you to a recipe of the dish. Personally, I never know what to eat and my food usually comes down to three meals I repeat over and over again. You could use Pinterest to get inspired to actually cook dinner. You just have to skip all the desserts. 😉
If you are a guy, don’t worry… you can use Pinterest, too. It will involve a little bit of work on your part, though. Pinterest is primarily a female website, but it is very geek friendly. As a guy, you might be into comic books, marketing and trains for example. Search those keywords and follow the boards you find.
Don’t feel bad about unfollowing certain people or their boards, even if they are your friends. If you unfollow all those shoes and wedding cakes, Pinterest will start reflecting your interests, which is what it is supposed to do. With a bit of tweaking, unfollowing and following the right kind of stuff, your Pinterest profile could make you happy, too. 🙂