Is Pinterest social media?
The Do You Even Blog Podcast said Pinterest is not social media. I disagree. This guide will explain why I believe the answer to the question, “Is Pinterest social media?” is a resounding, “Yes!”
There are many advantages to using social media and Pinterest is no different.
This post, shared in a tutorial format, will match the criteria to be considered social media with Pinterest and at the same time, teach you how to use Pinterest.
By the time you’re done reading this tutorial, you’ll know how to use Pinterest as a social media site, as a search engine, to generate blog traffic, and make money. You will also know the answer to the question, “Is Pinterest social media?”
The guide will share five answers to the question. I will share the first answer and other people will share the other four answers.
Spoiler alert: The answers vary.
Bring on the Pinterest guide and the tutorials.
What is Pinterest?
Pinterest is a social media site that uses a bulletin board format.
“Pinners,” as Pinterest users are called, pin images to theme-centered bulletin boards. You can pin images called “pins” to your own bulletin boards or Community Bulletin Boards which have groups of people pinning to them.
Pinterest is a social bookmarking site as well as a social media site. People bookmark content they want to return to at a later date. They do this by placing images that accompany the content on bulletin boards.
Who created Pinterest?
In 2009, Ben Silbermann, Evan Sharp, and Paul Sciarra developed the idea for Pinterest. The site then became available to the general public after 2010 (Source).
There seems to be plenty of controversy over the answer to the question, “Is Pinterest social media?”
On Quora, when a user asked, “Is Pinterest social media?” Six people, including myself, answered the question. Our answers were not unanimous. Five of the six said, “Yes, Pinterest is social media.” The sixth explained Pinterest is a search engine mistaken for a social media site.
Is Pinterest Social Media? Answer 1
Characteristics of Social Media
You Can Chat
Can you chat on Pinterest?
You can network on Pinterest the way you chat on other social media sites.
Look at the top of the screenshot.
The number over the chat bubble indicates that I have one message waiting for me.
The middle of the screenshot shows my dialogue with Lindsay who wrote to request an addition to my blog’s Pinterest board which is a perk for my blog followers.
The bottom of the screenshot shows where I add my message or my response to her message.
At the top of the screenshot, you see messages that await you. You have a choice of accepting or declining the invitation to chat. If you decline, you won’t be able to read your inbox message.
People can comment on the pins you put on your Pinterest virtual bulletin boards.
You see people comment on your pins. Click the icon that looks like a megaphone to read them.
The bold comments on the left of my screen are comments I haven’t read yet.
If you want to respond, click the comment icon.
You Can Post Videos
Social media sites allow you to upload videos. Does Pinterest?
By looking at the numbers on the videos, you can see that these are videos and how long they run.
Pinterest Has SEO Benefits
Did you know Pinterest is a search engine?
Recently, I read that Google doesn’t have a monopoly on traffic generation. People use social media sites to generate traffic to their blogs and businesses.
Since the powers-that-be at Pinterest want Pinterest to be a search engine, the site shows you what users search for, not what is repinned.
How can you make sure your content is what users search for?
Type your keyword into Pinterest’s search bar and see what comes up.
I want to use the keyword for this post as my pin’s alt tag, so I get SEO benefits.
Will I get found on Pinterest as well as Google?
How to get your pin found on Pinterest
I typed the keyword for this post, “Is Pinterest social media?” into the Pinterest search bar.
Do you see what populated?
Pinterest is showing me the relevant search terms Pinterest users typed into the Pinterest search bar to find content.
How to get your content found on Google:
Type your keyword for the post into the Alt Text box.
My recommendation: To be found on both Pinterest and Google, type both into the Alt Text box.
For instance, I could type, “Is Pinterest social media? Social media Pinterest.”
When you go to search, Pinterest shows you the topics popular on Pinterest. Posting about those topics will boost your visibility since Pinterest shows users what is currently popular.
Did you know social media sites rank on Google? I know I’ve often seen Quora answers populate when I search on Google.
According to Patrice, who has over 1 million followers on Pinterest, “Pinterest links too are counted by Google as a ranking factor and it will help the page get Google traffic too.”
Like other social media sites such as Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn, Pinterest utilizes hashtags.
There have been many questions regarding hashtag use on Pinterest. For years it was debated whether people should use hashtags when describing their pins. The answer is a resounding, “Yes!”
When you place your pin on a Pinterest board, you’ll be asked to describe your pin. Use a hashtag for your seed keyword.
When I started typing #SEOTips into the pin description, all the hashtags starting with #SEO populated. You can see #SEOTips has 4,491 pins.
You can look at this in two ways. First, there are many pins with this hashtag so your pin could get lost in the “noise.” On the other hand, there is interest in people using Pinterest to search for information for this topic.
Hashtag strategy: Do not just use one word to tag your pin. If #SEOTips could get lost in the noise, certainly a generic tag like merely #SEO will get lost in the noise.
Using Pinterest Boosts Website Traffic
You can use Pinterest to generate traffic and leads to your website.
If the pin has a link connected, the pins can generate website traffic for you.
Why would someone click your pin?
When someone clicks your pin, you get traffic to your website.
Are there certain factors you can control to make people more likely to click your pin?
Rich pins are more impressive and will make people more likely to notice them and click on them.
Step 1: Sign up for a Pinterest business account. [Here you will find instructions for making a Pinterest business account.]
Step 2: You will need to verify your account.
Step 3: Set up rich pins.
Make your pins long.
Vertical pins to better on Pinterest. Some Community Board admins only allow vertical pins on their boards.
The ideal length of a Pinterest pin should be 1024 pixels.
Make your pins bright.
Red pins are popular for this reason.
This screenshot shows you a glimpse of this blog’s Community Pinterest board.
Look at all the bright colors. You see red, pink, purple. These are common colors to use on your pins. You also see a bright green. Although green isn’t as commonly used, it stands out since it’s bright.
Any pinner not using bright colors will get lost in this group and not get pin clicks; in other words, their pins won’t generate website traffic.
Use Group Boards. Group boards boost your exposure and in turn, your chance for getting clicks that lead to website traffic.
Here are 47 free group boards.
If you are looking for more, PinGroupie is a popular Pinterest board directory.
You should try to find boards in your niche to find a targeted audience.
Have more than one pin per post.
Lindsey, a Pinterest expert who spoke about Pinterest strategies at a recent conference, recommends making 5 pins per post. This takes Lindsey 30 minutes to make.
Pinterest circulates her pins. No money is needed for ads with this method, so Lindsey recommends Pinterest.[Related Reading: How to generate Pinterest impressions and traffic.]
Are you still wondering if Pinterest is social media? Keep reading.
Use Pinterest Groups
Social media sites like Facebook and MeWe have groups. Pinterest has groups too inside of Tailwind, a Pinterest scheduler.
Finding people to share your pins in Facebook groups is easy. Simply type Pinterest + group in the Facebook search bar.
For example, there are Tailwind groups for pinners that use the Tailwind scheduler. There are also Pinterest Facebook groups. These reciprocal groups require you to pin pins and you’ll get yours pinned in return.
This boosts your exposure to get more followers and more traffic or sales.
[Related Reading: MeWe Review: Danger- Your Privacy Is at Risk- This Is a Facebook Alternative]
Imagine visiting one of the Pinterest sharing groups and finding a pin you believe your Pinterest followers would like.
There are many ways to share pins.
These are my Chrome browser extensions.
The first icon shows I have a Pinterest social share button as one of my extensions.
If you find a pinnable image anywhere on the internet, and you click the icon, all the pinnable images in the post will appear.
You click the one you want and your boards will populate. Which board do you want to add the pin to? Select the desired board.
Another way to add pins is by having a social share button on your site.
There are many plugins you can use. For example, Sumo and Social Warfare are WordPress plugins you can install on your site that allow visitors to share your pins.
WordPress also offers a choice of social share buttons you can select through Publicize.
Use Pinterest’s Analytics
Like other social media sites, Pinterest offers insights to help you know if you are getting a strong ROI (Return on Time Invested). This is important. You certainly don’t want to waste your time.
Frankly, using Pinterest takes no time at all. You make an image to accompany your blog post anyway.
Whatever little time making and tagging your pin takes, you want to make sure it is well spent.
Step 1: Click your profile name.
Step 2: Click Analytics.
You’ll see helpful analytics such as your metrics over time, your top boards, and your top pins.
When you first go into your Pinterest account, you will be in the Activity Section.
Scroll down to see the metrics on your individual pins.
Let’s examine the metrics on one of my pins.
114 people saw my pin, no one repinned my pin on their own board, but 3 people clicked my link and came to my site.
Therefore, I was able to use my pin to generate website traffic.
Tools Help You
Like on other social media sites, free tools exist that can help you increase your success on Pinterest.
My favorite is IFTTT (If This, Then That).
IFTTT will post your social media content for you.
All you need do is set up the connections.
Make an account, sign in, and type PINTEREST in the search bar. Click on the Pinterest button to see the available Pinterest connections.
These are just 9 of the Pinterest connections available to you when you use IFTTT.
Here you will find an IFTTT tutorial.
Do you want to unfollow Pinterest users who stopped following you back? Pinfollow is the tool for you.
Here you will find more information about Pinfollow and other unfollow tools.
Pinterest automated schedulers
Tailwind is an extremely popular Pinterest scheduler. Many Tailwind tribes have formed inside of Tailwind. Members boost each other’s success through repinning.
Tailwind pricing starts at $9.99 per month.
I like to use free tools, so I prefer Viralwoot. Here you will find a Viralwoot tutorial.
Use Pinterest to Make Money
Like on other social media sites, you can use Pinterest to make money.
Many of these monetization opportunities involve paying to play.
When you go into your Pinterest profile, to the left of the search bar, you will see “Ads.”
Click Ads. Click Create Ad.
Only 66 people saw this pin. If you want to pay to boost your pin’s visibility, click Promote.
Pinterest has Shoppable Pins.
Shoppable pins enable people to buy what they see in the pin.
[Related Reading: Find more opportunities to make money on social media sites. ]
Is Pinterest Niche Specific?
Do only DIYers and Recipe bloggers use Pinterest?
Many do, but they are not the only content creators using Pinterest.
Strategies to find people in your content niche:
Follow people in your niche. On LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Twitter it is the culture to follow back.
You should also follow an influencer’s followers. This method worked to grow my following on both Pinterest and Twitter.
Consider these comments from Mansoor, a blogging tips blogger:
“No one size fits all. Since I found Pinterest to be more generous to the blogger and creative, I find it easier to attract organic traffic to my content without overthinking Google.”
Is Pinterest Social Media? Answer 2
According to the Social Media Hat blog when discussing your social media brand presence, there are 7 qualities of social media:
Quality 1: Your customers are there.
Are your customers on Pinterest?
Quality 2: Social media discipline
Does Pinterest follow the above criteria to be social media?
Quality 3: Social media provokes engagement.
As the tutorial above indicated, the first criterion explained you can use Pinterest to engage. Your social networking engages and your interesting pins engage.
Quality 4: The ideal brand presence is trend-focused.
Does Pinterest focus most visible content around market research trends?
Quality 5: It is driven by visuals.
Clearly, Pinterest is driven by visuals. Pinterest is an image-sharing and video-sharing site.
Quality 6: It is humane.
Is Pinterest humane?
I went into Pinterest frequently while doing research for this post. I was surprised I didn’t see information about the Coronavirus. I found resources about the virus at other social media sites.
Not one to be deterred, I typed “Coronavirus” into the search bar.
Pinterest gave a disclaimer at the top of the screen explaining they limit content due to misinformation which is spread on social media sites.
Quality 7: It is fun.
I find Pinterest a lot of fun. I enjoy being in a Facebook group, sharing pins, and finding like-minded content creators the most.
Is Pinterest Social Media? Answer 3
Seven characteristics of what it takes to be social media:
Pressbooks.com also discusses the characteristics of social media.
Quality 1: Its users are content creators.
Quality 2: You can share content.
Quality 3: You can post new content.
Quality 4: Social media fosters a sense of community and connectedness.
Is Pinterest Social Media? Answer 4
This answer is from Quora.com. On Quora, a user asked for 3 words that describe social media.
How would you have responded?
Answer 1: Communication, Community, Engagement
Answer 2: Collaboration, Content sharing, Interaction
Answer 3: Content, Creativity, Common-sense.
When asked to describe social media in one sentence, a Quora user responded, “Social media is like a meal— we can’t live without it.”
Is Pinterest Social Media? Answer 5
Rachel Ngom also offers strategies for boosting your income with Pinterest.
While Rachel’s strategies teach how to make money on Pinterest, her hacks also support the reasons I believe the answer to the question, “Is Pinterest social media?” is “Yes” which I explained in Section 1. Therefore, I am putting them in a separate section here.
She explains in contrast to Facebook, where you need to pay for ads to have a chance at monetization, you can use Pinterest for free to boost your income.
Rachel offers a 5-step strategy:
Step 1: Create SEO-Friendly Content
Rachel wants you to ask yourself these questions:
Who is your ideal client? What problem do they have? How can you create content that helps them with their problem?
Rachel explains Pinterest is a search engine. You need to do keyword research to find long-tail keywords people are searching for. Rachel defines long-tail keywords as having four or more words to them.
She wants you to put the long-tail keyword in the pin description. In contrast to using keyword tools like Moz or Ubersuggest, she wants you to imagine the keywords your ideal client is typing in to search for content.
Once you type in your keyword, Pinterest will autofill so you will see the long-tail keywords. They are more specific.
Don’t just put a keyword in your pin description.
Colored tiles will populate showing you additional phrases you can put in your sentences-long pin description.
Step 2: Pin your content to SEO-friendly boards.
Rachel advises making your board descriptions also keyword-friendly.
Rachel uses Canva to make her pins, but there are many graphic design tools you can use.
I like Snappa. I also like PixTeller, Fotor, and PosterMyWall. Here you will find a PosterMyWall tutorial.
Rachel even explains you can use the same eye-catching template over and over by changing the descriptions and text.
Make sure your pin is long and eye-catching, Rachel advises.
Rachel recommends giving people a CTA (Call to Action). Offer them your freebie if you want them to sign up for your list, for example.
Step 3: Automate your content.
Rachel recommends Tailwind with Tailwind Tribes.
She agrees that Pinterest’s algorithm is biased in favor of people who pin often.
If you automate, you don’t need to be at the computer often.
Rachel explains there are many Tailwind tribes you can join. The tribes are reciprocal.
Step 4: Generate leads.
You need a way to capture emails. Your social media followers will go away if the social media site shuts down.
You give the freebie, and they give you their email. Win-win.
Step 5: Make your offer
For example, you can sell your ebook or your course. Make your freebie related to the offer you make.
Rachel’s methods include SEO, tool automation, and lead generation among the others I used to prove the answer to the question “Is Pinterest social media is ‘Yes’.”
Is Pinterest Social Media? FAQ
Yes, but the answer is not unanimous. On Quora, 1/6 of the respondents answered “no.” On Google, at the time of this writing, the post in Position 2 On Page 1 answered “no.”
More and more, Pinterest is trying to establish itself as a search engine. As time goes on, more people are considering Pinterest a search engine.
What is the point of Pinterest?
Pinterest is used to share images and videos in a bulletin-board style format. By sharing (pinning) these images to relevant boards, people use Pinterest as a social bookmarking site. They can return later and review the content they pinned to the boards.
Is Pinterest a dating site?
No. Pinterest is not known as a dating site.
Wrapping Up: Is Pinterest Social Media?
In closing, this post examined 5 answers to the question “Is Pinterest social media.”
Did you notice any anomalies? I did.
All 5 responses answered in the affirmative but for different reasons.
In my opinion, the most unique answer we received was “Yes, Pinterest is a social media site since social media sites are humane.”
Readers, I look forward to your views. Do you believe Pinterest is a social media site? Are there additional criteria that should be considered when deciding what it takes to be social media?
Please share. In addition to explaining why I believe Pinterest is a social media site, this post served as a Pinterest guide and tutorial.
By sharing, other Pinterest users will know how to use Pinterest as a social media site, how to use Pinterest as a search engine, and how to use Pinterest to make money.
Janice Wald is the founder of MostlyBlogging.com and co-founder of the Mostly Blogging Academy. She is an ebook author, blogger, blogging coach, blogging judge, freelance writer, and speaker. She won the Best Internet Marketer Award and the Best Blogger Award at the 2021 Infinity Blog Awards. Wald was also nominated as 2019 Best Internet Marketer by the Infinity Blog Awards and in 2017 as the Most Informative Blogger by the London Bloggers Bash. She’s been featured on Small Business Trends, the Huffington Post, and Lifehack.