Show Notes: Pin This
Followers are built on Pinterest through "repinning," which is similar to retweeting on Twitter. Patrick noted the speed with which a following can be built on Pinterest; while followers may never reach the astronomical numbers of some Twitter users, it is easier for a larger number of users to build a significant following. This can enhance other parts of a social media effort, as has happened with Real Simple magazine, she noted.
"It combines influence, which is very high on places like Twitter, with discoverability, which is low on Twitter," she said. "So that's something that should interest all of us in publishing."
Limitations of the still-new site include what panelists agreed was a poor mobile experience, a need to better define what the service is and questions about copyright infringement. (The site allows websites to block pinning, and pins carry over any watermarks or copyright information included with them. Panelists noted, however, that many photographers embrace Pinterest as a great way to promote their work.)
Rebecca Schinsky, associate editor and community manger at Book Riot, stressed that, like all social media, promotion on Pinterest must put community-building first.
"Don't ever think of Pinterest or any of the social media outlets as purely promotional," she said. "Not all of your pins should drive back to your website. … You build trust by showing other things you are interested in as well."
An example she gave is a recent Book Riot Pinterest board showing author Toni Morrison's many hairstyles. "There is no reason the world needs a Pinterest board of Toni Morrison hair-dos over the years," she said to laughter, " … but it provided our readers who are interested in Toni Morrison with other places to go, other resources they can click through to."