I’m on Pinterest. And I like it.
I know when I first checked it out my initial reaction was, “Woah, it’s like every wedding-planning, weight-loss, and makeover show on TLC over and over again,” * and I was not alone in that thought.
And aside from the frustrating conversations that dismiss Pinterest as something for women only (The Mary Sue has a pretty good run down here), questions regarding its legality, and its sources of revenue, now that I’ve learned the ropes I see Pinterest as a beautifully laid out way to share content.
There are certainly ways Pinterest could be improved. I’ve seen requests for private boards and the ability to block users (aspects already available on other social networks). I know I would love to be able to filter out all wedding, hairdo, and thinspiration pictures.
But it didn’t stop me and it shouldn’t stop you.
Tips on surviving Pinterest
Assuming you’re not on Pinterest for wedding/hair/workout tips, you’re going to have to work a little bit to create and curate your own space.
1. Start by following people you know. You trust their taste, right? You probably follow them on twitter or have them as friends on Facebook, so you know if you can handle their stream of consciousness in image form.
2. Get to know the categories. Under “Everything” at the top of the page is a menu to help you find pins that might interest you.Word to the wise: steer clear of Fitness unless you like fat-shaming, guilt trips, and Photoshopped images.
3. Start naming some of you own boards. Pinterest is good here. You can make tons of boards, with any name you want. Not sure what kind of boards you want? Afraid of committing? Don’t worry, Pinterest has got your back, as you’ll see.
4. Like stuff, Pin stuff, Repin stuff. If you’re Pinning and Repinning and you realize you don’t have a fitting Board already set up, Pinterest lets you create a new board right then and there. I think this feature is the bee’s knees.
5. Comment. If you want. Just like Facebook. You can comment. Or you can take the easier route and just “Like” it.
6. Have fun. It’s Pinterest. Not rocket science.
I’ve found some pretty cool stuff on Pinterest and enjoy browsing pretty places, craft ideas, beautiful design, and layout inspiration. I have yet to see an organization do a really good job of it. Possibly because Pinterest is about sharing things you love, and not self-promotion. It’s even one of their etiquette tips:
Are you on Pinterest? Are you avoiding it? Have you found any organization that does a really good job of using it?
*Nothing wrong with wedding-planning, weight-loss, and makeover shows on TLC. Anyone who knows me knows I watch my fair share of them.