Facebook and Instagram certainly have their professional sides, why not Pinterest? In an effort to try new social media sites for professional use, I share my experience on using Pinterest for a few short weeks. What social media site do you use for professionally?
After some earlier engagement on the subject of what social networks sites we were all using, it became obvious to me that I was missing out on Pinterest. I decided to dive in and see what use Pinterest could have for my career. After all, I was hearing from so many that it was a great tool for inspiration on instructional design. I could see that being true, as I use Instagram for inspiration on loads of things, mainly outdoor and travel.
Overall I'm impressed with the platform. I am a visual person and the idea of being able to use an image thumbnail to help remind me of something I read online is great. Sometimes it's the image itself I'm interested in pinning! Before Pinterest all my web content was organized using bookmarks, and although it was well organized with folders on subjects, it took a while and I found myself sometimes not bookmarking something just because the process of categorizing it within my online bookmarks was so tedious. Yes, even six clicks to save something today seems like a lot. With Pinterest, I installed this browser button add-on so now when I hove my mouse over an image on a browser window, it allows me to pin it. One click and it's organized! I am so into this.
I used to use google image search for design ideas. Pinterest is such better quality. Almost immediately you learn your 'pinned' content is organized into collections called 'boards', which you name. I created one called "Product Specs Displayed" because I spend a lot of time trying to use an image of a tech product to design a way to display all it's features. A particularly useful tool to me about these boards is the ability to share them with others. It helps with collaboration. My team of developers are all remotely located, and we use a variety of software tools to collaborate. I can see Pinterest among those moving forward for simple project ideas. I plan on sharing a Pinterest board with a classmate to help our collaboration on a instructional design project.
The other feature I like is the ability to make boards secret. I definitely like Pinterest and would prefer to keep all public facing content professional, so I like that I can use it for my personal interests without having to have another account. Professionally, it will be useful in project ideas I'm not ready to share with the rest of the world, or perhaps even as a way to draft a collection before I make it public.
I still need more time on the app to feel more than a rookie at this point, but overall the features I've discovered show me a lot of potential for its use as an inspirational tool.