Pinterest is popping up all over the place. Is it just noise of some early adopter freaks? No it is not.
Pinterest is a super fast growing content sharing platform that competes with Flickr, Picasa and the likes. Now recently Pinterest is coming very close to the traffic rank level of Flickr and as Pinterest was growing Flickr's traffic is declining.
Here is what makes Pinterest so strong and moves it into a position that will outperform the 800 pound gorilla – Flickr
1) Pinterest is social from the get go
Flickr is simply a photo sharing platform that never developed any further. You can't even like a photo. Comments is the best you can do. In contrast on Pinterest you have a decent vanity URL see a persons profile, and you can follow selected or all so called "boards" – you may call it sets, groups of content etc. Obviously you can like images, comment on them and more
2) Pinterest is a community
As you follow users on Pinterest you build a sense of community. You see what's new and coming and you see it right in your list of users you follow. All this is either not possible or too complicated in Flickr.
3) Pinterest Re-pin feature
One of the other killer features is repining photos. This is where the rubber meets the road. It is super easy to basically pin whatever you liked and add it to your own board. You may create a super interesting collection of things or just because you liked one thing. What about IP (Intellectual Property)? If this is your concern, don't go there for the other billion this is not an issue because we are here to share not to own. Obviously giving credits is a must and it is actually automatic on Pinterest as soon as you repin an image.
4) A social time line
Social is probably the one major difference over all. And as such Pinterest has a social timeline sharing what I liked, uploaded, re-pinned and so forth. Again it becomes a community and not just a pixel graveyard.
5) Shared Contribution
And again – social. Pinterest offeres the ability that others can actually contribute to a board. For instance if you use Pinterest as a business you may want your entire team contribute. Or if you have a fan club you want the whole club be able to contribute. Needless to say that all this is light years ahead of Flickr and it is hard to imagine that a company like Yahoo that has just no social DNA will ever be able to catch up.
6) Following, Linkes, Social Integration
Pinterest supports the key engagement features with buttons and links to build a following similar to Twitter. And as people continue to upload photos, images, screenshots, box shots you create a social engagement for both you personal friends or your business friends (I purposely use the term business friends instead of "target audience".
Obviously you find all the traditional photo sharing stuff including use of tags inside Pinterest. When I googled "tips for Pinterest" today – I got 60 Million findings. Not bad for a startup. RIP Flickr.
There is no doubt in my mind that Flickr will be half of Pinterest in less than 12 month. Even if Yahoo is investing big time to catch up – it will only be catch up and Pinterest will continue to innovate and lead – simply because of its social foundation. And that social foundation is not just a set of engineering hours but a mind set.