GLOBAL – There’s been a lot of Pinterest in a new picture-based social network which even has Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg as a member. His account, along with millions of others, has helped to make it the fastest site to break through the 10 million unique visitor mark.
You can access and post to it via a free app called Pinspiration on your Nokia Lumia phone. It’s a particularly good fit with Windows Phones because anyone who has one will already be used to pinning apps to their homescreen.
This visually-stunning virtual noticeboard, which is particularly popular with women for some reason, works in a very similar way. Once you have been sent an invite from pinterest.com (it takes about a day to get your account), it takes seconds to set up.
First off, you create a board and choose a browsing category so that other “pinners” can find it. Then start posting pictures or web pages, along with a comment, to the board. I’ve done one under the handle of RepublicT (above) themed on my favourite subject, Nokia.
You can share the board or keep it private and you can browse other boards in the same category and pin other people’s pics to your own.
You can also follow others if you like their stuff, but it can mean your own board getting swamped with other people’s pics. The cleverest part of the app is the “pin it” button which you can place on your computer browser’s favourites bar, so that anytime you want to add a website or pic to your Pinterest board, you just hit that button.
It’s also really quick to load up a picture from your Lumia phone via the app. After logging in, you can either take a picture or choose one from your camera roll, then hit the arrow up button at the bottom centre of your phone screen. It’s quicker than uploading to Facebook. There’s also a ‘Pro’ version of the app for 0.79p, which lets you pin more images, more quickly.
By swiping sideways in the app, you can see “Pinners you follow”, explore and discover other pinners via browsing categories, check activity to see who is following you or where your pictures have been repinned.
You can also check your profile to see how many, boards, pins, likes and followers you have at any time. There’s a lot of activity. Within 15 minutes of posting my first pictures, someone had already pinned some pics of the Nokia Lumia 800 on their board entitled “What I really want”, next to an Audi TT.
This social network has so much potential. It works simply as a set of personal picture albums, which display better than Facebook. Or it works as a message or memo board, to bring new websites or information to the attention of your followers. As a viral way of spreading images, it seems hard to beat. And it works well as a kind of plug in to Twitter and Facebook.
No wonder everyone’s been talking about it during Social Media Week.
Pinterest takes social networks to a new level because it communicates in a primarily visual way that anyone can understand. No need for translation. And, after all, a picture says far more than 140 characters.