Find me on Pinterest here.
After putting up quite a fight, I finally caved and joined Pinterest – and I’m so glad I did! It’s been a delight to discover so much beauty and inspiration and also to learn the culture of a fresh social media platform. I’m still a beginner but so many people have asked me how I’m finding it that I thought I’d share what I’ve learned so far. If you do decide to join, you can find me here.
What is Pinterest?
It’s a social site where you can gather and share online images. Instead of reading someone’s Facebook updates or tweets, you see what they are “pinning.” You also create your own collections of images called “Boards” where you can pull together everything from quotes to cute animal pics to home improvement inspirations to hairstyle ideas.
Why did I resist Pinterest?
It was clear to me it could be a total time suck. Perusing beautiful, inspiring, interesting, intriguing images could be a days-long pursuit as far as I’m concerned! And I wasn’t sure there was any value in it other than “Ooh, pretty!” (Though I do see lots of value in that!)
Why did I join Pinterest?
“Ooh, pretty”! Lol, that was a big part of it. There is so much gorgeous visual stimulation it’s hard to resist. Plus my sister Suzie was enjoying it so much it was hard not to join in! One afternoon I had a couple of hours so I thought I’d give it a try. Quickly, I was hooked.
What hooked me on Pinterest?
It was much more than just the beauty; it was all the possibilities. For example, at first I really struggled with creating categories for the pins I was choosing but that became a fascinating learning experience. What was I interested in? What threads tied together my pins? What did that reveal about me? It reminded me of how over the years assessing my to-dos has helped me get really clear on my priorities, each one becoming a part of my now regular cornerstones of home, work, self, relationships, creativity and spirit. I look forward to the same process of self-discovery as I look at what I pin.
I can also discover others in a brand new way. When you look at someone’s boards, you engage with them in an entirely different mode. Through their visuals you pick up on their taste, their colour story, their loves, their humour and most especially their dreams. It’s so beautiful and absolutely compelling.
As an artist, I’ve also found that Pinterest is expanding my visual imagination. It’s filling up my mind & soul with shapes and symbols and textures and paintings and ideas and photography and on and on and on. There is just so much inspiration in terms of subject matter, colour schemes and media!
Is Pinterest a Time Suck?
This was what I was most worried about, no doubt, but I’ve found it to be manageable. Falling in love with and repinning an image is a very quick process. Of course, you could be enjoying that all day but one thing that helps me be more moderate is knowing that people who are following me are seeing all of those pins. I don’t want to flood them with oodles of stuff so I choose a few things here and there throughout the day that delight me and hopefully everyone else who sees what I’ve pinned.
Five Ways to Use Pinterest
Learn Your Style/Discover Your Aesthetic
What a simple and free way to experiment, to gather, to discover what your loves are. Create a board called “My Style” and fill it with images that strike your fancy. Then take a moment and notice – what are the colours? the shapes? the moods? What can you glean about your style from what you pin?
Dreamboards are one of the ways I’ve come to know my own taste so well. Why not make them on Pinterest? Imagine creating a board for the Full Wolf Moon and the Full Pink Moon. One of the advantages of Pinterest too is that you can use images from anywhere online. Imagine how much you have to choose from! Imagine the range and diversity! Particularly if you have difficulty finding magazines that reflect your unique style, this can be a great option.
Create Mood Boards or Inspiration Boards
Getting married? Buying a home? Designing a website? Doing a renovation? Create a board to gather inspirations. Imagine sending your florist one link to the bouquets you are in love with. Plus, if you’re working with others on as project, multiple people can pin to the same board. You could use Pinterest as a home base for sharing your take and making sure that you and other project contributors are on the same page.
I was amazed to discover just how many people use Pinterest to collect recipes, crafts projects and DIY ideas. As far as I can tell, Pins maintain their original url so clicking on them takes you to the source. So instead of listing all of your links or references in words, you could just go to your board, have an immediate visual hit and click through. Sounds good to me!
Using Pinterest for Business and/or Blog Traffic
There have been lots of recent success stories about bloggers whose traffic increased exponentially due to Pinterest. If you have the right kind of business, this is an absolute natural. If you make gorgeous jewellery or magical paintings or sell deliciously textured knitwear on Etsy, pin your work! You just may find your beautiful creation finding a home on tons of boards and lots of people clicking through to discover who made that wonderful piece! But be aware that getting too promo-y can be a real turn-off here. Let the pictures speak for themselves. That’s the language that people on Pinterest understand.