103 Resources For Becoming a Pinterest Expert

Forget Linsanity, there’s now Pinsanity on the internet. Astounding growth has led to wide media coverage and tons of articles, blogs and videos about this new social network (or social web). Some say that it’s tapped into what other social networks have done so well: getting people to share and communicate, while also helping them discover, instead of search. Techies call it a Delicious for photos. Whatever you want to call it, it’s been on the rise quickly.

If you’re hungry for learning and becoming more knowledgeable about Pinterest, then this slew of articles can help. Here are 103 articles to guide your way through Pinterest, as well as some similar spin-offs. Included at the end of each section are some key takeaways that I’ve found from reading these articles.

And now for a quick synopsis and an occasional excerpt from numerous articles.

Background and Basics on Pinterest:

1. 13 Fun Facts About Pinterest Users [Infographic] – An infographic that shares some data behind the people using Pinterest. One surprising statistics: Almost 16 minutes spent on site per user & their strong growth of employees; about a 180% increase in one year.

2. 97% of Pinterest’s Facebook Fans are Female – According to the data, Pinterest retains and engages their users 2-3x better than Twitter did at the same point in their history.

3. How Do People Use Pinterest? – An article with visual slides tells of the different types of people who use Pinterest. Among them are businesses, designers & educators.

4. Intro to Pinterest [Video] – A 6-minute video that goes through the ins and outs of Pinterest. Good video if you want to know the basics behind Pinterest and get informed on how it works.

5. Men Are from Google+, Women Are from Pinterest – An article explaining the user base of females on Pinterest, while examining that two-thirds of Google+ users are male.

6. Nailing Down The Appeal of Pinterest – NPR covers why people love Pinterest, the main reason being that they are interested in following people who are similar to them.

7. Pinterest Founder Ben Silbermann Shares His Story & Talks Pinterest [Video] – In this 30 minute presentation, Ben Silbermann talks about his story and why he started Pinterest.

8. Pinterest Founders Talk After Winning a Crunchie For Best Startup [Video] of 2011 – Ben Silbermann discusses some details about Pinterest after accepting the Crunchie from TechCrunch.

9. Pinterest is Driving Major Traffic to Retailers – Pinterest is one of the top referring sites, and this article has an infographic that nicely illustrates the success it’s had for retailers.

10. Pinterest: The Last Article You’ll Ever Need or Want to Read – A good article that covers some of the FAQ’s about Pinterest- the what, why and how.

11. Pinterest Traffic Data (Women) – Another article that gets into the females behind Pinterest. At the time that the article was written, 97% of Pinterest’s Facebook fans were female.

12. What is Pinterest [Infographic] – For the visually inclined, this infographic shows the data behind Pinterest’s traffic and some helpful tips to get started.

13. What is Pinterest? [Video] – Chris Pirillo helps explain some of the basics behind Pinterest. There is no screencast included in this video.

14. What You Need to Know About Pinterest – Gives you some of the basics behind Pinterest. What’s special about Pinterest?: Hint: Women love it!

15. What’s This Pinterest Website? – Covers the story behind Pinterest and its conundrum of having lots of users but not having any revenue.

16. Why Pinterest is 2012’s Hottest Website – Strong growth, unique audience & taking a different approach are some of the keys behind Pinterest’s success.

17. Why Pinterest is Hot – Article featuring the founders behind Pinterest and gives the back story of Pinterest.

18. Why Should We Be Interested in Pinterest? [Infographic] – Shows you just about all the information you need to get an understanding of Pinterest.

19. Beginners Guide – Covers the five common questions of Pinterest: What is it? What is it for? How do I pin stuff? What’s the social angle? Anything else I should know?

What you can take away from background articles:

Pinterest’s primary demographic is women. Pinterest is one of the fastest growing websites ever. The co-founder Ben Silbermann started the company because as a kid he loved to collect things.

Articles on Pinterest’s Growth:

20. 10 Reasons Pinterest Booked 10 Million Visitors a Month So Fast – Forbes contributor Anthony Wing Cosner gives reasons as to why Pinterest is so popular. Among the reasons are the ability to discover instead of search, find people with similar interests & it’s ease of use. Good lessons for entrepreneurs.

21. 4000% Increase in Site Visits in 6 Months – According to Hitwise, Pinterest grew from 275,000 visitors in June 2011 to 11 million by mid-December.

22. How did Pinterest gain initial traction? – The top answer says that the main reasons behind Pinterest’s initial traction are: It has attracted the design community and has built in mechanisms to help it spread further, a focus on community & having quality content.

23. How did Pinterest grow by 4000% in a year? – Highlights the tools that Pinterest has to increase their viral coefficient.

25. Now Pulling In More Pageviews Than Etsy; Grew 2,000% From June-November 2011 – A comparison of Pinterest and Etsy, both successful companies in their own right.

26. Pinterest crosses 10 million US uniques faster than any other site – “This proves the power of the interest graph, and could convince more startups to build around what people care about instead of the social graph of who they care about.”

27. The Secret To Pinterest Success: We’re Sick of Each Other – Highlights that Pinterest has tapped into sharing who we want to be, not what we’re doing, where we’ve been or how important we are.

28. What is driving the growth of users in Pinterest? – Semil Shah’s most up-voted answer on Quora tells us that it’s the easy and intuitive, fun design that emphasizes pictures over text has led to a lot of Pinterest’s growth.

29. Why We’re All Suddenly Obsessed With Pinterest – Fast Company gives three reasons why Pinterest is a success: it’s based on social relevance, it’s visual story telling & it’s been getting a lot of inbound and outbound traffic.

What you can take away from growth articles:

Pinterest is growing quickly due to its virality. Part of the reason for its growth is also because of the fact that people get to look instead of read. It’s more visually appealing than a site that’s chock full of text.

How-To Articles on Pinterest:

30. 4 Unique Ways to Use Pinterest – This article gives the reader examples as to how to use Pinterest. Whether you’re a small or large business, in need of home improvement help, or a blogger looking to spread your content.

31. 8 Strategies for Launching a Brand Presence on Pinterest – Here’s a simple how- to as well as some tips on getting brand exposure on Pinterest.

32. How to Add A Pinterest Button To Your Site – Gives steps on how to implement the “Pin it” button to your site.

33. How to Master Pinterest for B2B Marketing – Adding visual content to Pinterest may be a way to increase referral traffic. Try including your infographics on Pinterest.

34. How to Measure (and Increase) Your Pinfluence on Pinterest – PinClout is the Klout for Pinterest that helps you measure your influence and understand your impact.

35. How to Take Your Pinning Addiction Up a Notch – If you didn’t think you had a big enough obsession with Pinterest, here’s a few ways to increase it and help spread your board.

36. How to Use Pinterest: A step-by-step guide – Covers all the basics of using Pinterest, from start to finish.

37. How to Use Pinterest for Business – This 44 page PDF from HubSpot gives a great background on businesses that are on Pinterest and how you could possibly use it for marketing.

38. How to Use Pinterest to Make a Major Announcement – A story about how Jonathon Levy of RodaleGrow used Pinterest to announce his engagement.

39. Stay Safe on Pinterest – Read Write Web columnist Alicia Eler says there are three areas where you should keep an eye on to help protect your security and privacy- Pinterest Settings, Facebook-Pinterest authorization and Twitter-Pinterest authorization. She analyzes all three, giving you tips to increase and become better aware of the privacy on Pinterest.

40. Use Pinterest to Boost Your Sites Traffic Without Looking Like a Marketer – If you are going to use Pinterest to help market your brand, take these helpful “best practices” to heart.

What you can take away from how-to articles:

At the time of this posting, Pinterest is an invite only site. It’s not hard to get an invite, though. Simply request one (right on their homepage) and you’ll likely receive an email within a few days with an invitation. After that, it’s important to engage and follow the people with the same interests that you have. Pin interesting images and don’t spam.

Lessons to Learn From Pinterest:

41. How to Make Your Startup Go Viral The Pinterest Way – Virality and how Pinterest uses it are explored in this article.

42. Lessons from Path and Pinterest – A few lessons that an entrepreneur can learn from other company slip ups. The main objective is to be transparent with your consumers and don’t take them for granted.

43. The Rise Of Pinterest And The Shift From Search To Discovery – Contributor to TechCrunch Semil Shah examines how users are moving away from searching to now discovering.

44. The Secret To Pinterest’s Astounding Success: A Brilliant Sign-Up Process You Should Copy – Having an excellent sign up process is important for a startup. Nicholas Carlson breaks it down and features some interesting words used in emails. Good lessons to learn here.

45. Why Do Geek Moms Like Pinterest? – Understanding why people love Pinterest is important if you want to learn anything from it. This article covers why moms and women like it so much.

46. Why Pinterest is Killing It, While Your Gamification Lags – Examines part of Pinterest’s success and what gamification experts can learn from it.

47. Why Pinterest Is So Addictive – It’s in people’s nature to collect things. Pinterest helps you do that and share it your collections with like-minded individuals.

What you can take away from lessons to learned articles:

If you’re in the curation business, tap into one of the core human needs: communication with others. Help people do this and find others with the same interests. Also take into consideration that there are many opinions from very respectable people who say that trends are shifting from searching to discovering things.

Marketing with Pinterest:

48. How Pinterest Is Becoming the Next Big Thing in Social Media for Business – Jason Falls from Entrepreneur magazine tells how Pinterest can help a businesses. The main reason being is that retailers can post their catalogs on Pinterest to help drive sales. Heed the advice to also contribute other things to the community.

49. 10 Strategies for Non-Profits on Pinterest – Non-profits along with for-profits can learn a lot from this article about how to spread the word about your business.

50. 10 Tips on Using Pinterest For Your Business – A great guide to help give you some ideas on where to start with Pinterest.

51. 26 Tips For Using Pinterest For Your Business – An exhaustive but quick read giving ideas as how to get more referral traffic from Pinterest.

52. 5 Things Brands Should Keep in Mind When Using Pinterest – Tips to remember if you do decide to venture into Pinterest.

53. 5 Ways Brands Can Leverage Pinterest – “The Pinterest frenzy provides marketers with an opportunity to leverage its compelling visual nature and weave it into a cohesive social experience within a brand’s Facebook community.”

54. 56 Ways to Market Your Business on Pinterest – There’s something for everyone in this article that is broken down by beginners, intermediates & “black belts”.

55. 6 Pinterest Tips Start-ups Can Use to Grow Their Business – Some guidelines to follow if you do want to try Pinterest. Good content is key, not spamming & posting at the optimal times will help contribute toward success.

56. 6 Tips for Tapping Pinterest’s Surging Popularity – The Wall Street Journal gives entrepreneurs tips on how to get into Pinterest while it is still on the rise in popularity.

57. 7 Creative Ways Your Brand Can Use Pinterest – Tips that you may want to use if you do decide to use Pinterest, including an idea for a contest that Lands End has done to help increase engagement.

58. 7 Examples of Brands That Pop on Pinterest – If you were curious as to what brands are already on Pinterest, here’s seven explanations of what they’re doing right and what others can learn from them.

59. 7 Reasons Why Pinterest Isn’t Yet Ready for Tech Brands – Always good to hear all sides, and in this article Sivan Cohen and Ben Lang share why a tech brand shouldn’t be on Pinterest.

60. 9 Tips To Boost Your Business With Pinterest – Practical tips and advice from Inc; one of them being if it’s not a fit with your brand, Pinterest isn’t for you.

61. How Brands Are Using Pinterest and What They Can Do Better – A feature of brands and critique on what can be done to improve your presence on Pinterest. Five quick tips are: promote a life style, use it like a focus group, drive sales, crowdsource and run contests.

62. How To Market Your Consumer-Based Business On Pinterest – Covers various niches that can be found on Pinterest.

63. Pinterest Marketing Tips – Kristi Hines makes a convincing case on why you should use Pinterest and gives a few tips as well.

64. The Marketers Guide to Pinterest – Neil Patel writes a guide on how to market on Pinterest.

65. The Ultimate Guide to Mastering Pinterest For Marketing – A great article that covers Pinterest from start to finish.

66. The Viral Guide to Pinterest Marketing – Here’s another good resource for improving SEO and “link juice” with Pinterest.

67. Tips & Tricks to Drive Targeted Traffic – Take into consideration the fact that Pinterest is a much better referrer for traffic than Google+. With all the money that Google has invested in their social network, Pinterest is much more successful. This article covers Pinterest marketing and two things that can kill your brand: “First, don’t watermark or brand your images. People will recommend this – don’t do it. Second, don’t use a price tag banner. Again, it just doesn’t work.”

68. What Women Want: 6 Lessons for Pinterest from 100K Visitors – A few lessons taken from a female perspective that gives advice for maintaining a solid brand image on Pinterest.

69. What’s Pinterest and How to Use it For Your Brand – More content about how to promote your brand on Pinterest.

70. Why Pinterest Should Matter To You – Article focuses on convincing you that your brand should be on Pinterest.

71. Why To Use Pinterest For Marketing And How To Do It Right – Avoid a boring board, be authentic and; add your logo as your profile picture in addition to a few other tips.

What you can take way from marketing articles:

Use Pinterest if you think it can help your business. There are already a number of reputable, well established brands that have a presence on Pinterest. But don’t force your way in because “everyone else is doing it”. Don’t spam the place or you and your brand will quickly get a bad reputation. Pin interesting things and follow people who are interested in the same things you are. Keep in mind that Pinterest is visual. If you’re going to pin boring pictures just to promote yourself, you’ll likely to do more harm than good. It’s important to reiterate that the difference between adding actual value and spamming. Etsy is often mentioned as a brand using Pinterest the correct way. Bottom line that you need to know: Promote a lifestyle, engage & don’t just advertise your own brand.

Miscellaneous Articles and Rare Gems

72. 13 Tips and Tricks for Cutting Edge Users – On this slideshow, some new ideas are brought to light that the average user might not know.

73. 3 Reasons Pinterest Is Going To Be Big in 2012 – Is Pinterest here to stay? Blogger Tim Jahn thinks that 2012 is the year where it’s going to get “big”. He gives us three compelling reasons why it will.

74. 4 Things Pinterest Isn’t Telling You – A must read before you dive into Pinterest.

75. 4 Ways Pinterest Can Be Useful At Work – Tips to use Pinterest to help in your work and keep organized.

76. How Pinterest is Secretly Profiting From Your Links – You can find a lot of discussion on this. It’s important to note that they are no longer using Skimlinks.

77. How Pinterest Will Transform the Web in 2012 – Elad Gil makes his case for why social content curation is the next big thing.

78. How You Could Get Sued For Using Pinterest – Discourages uploading images to Pinterest that are protected by copyright. If it doesn’t belong to you and Pinterest sells it, you could wind up in a lawsuit.

79. Never Fall in Love With The Medium – Chris Brogan makes the case that it’s not the tool that’s important, but rather the information we get out of it and the people who use it.

80. Nordstrom Using Pinterest Correctly – Nordstrom is one of the first brands to adopt Pinterest and they have a purpose for being there.

81. Pinterest: A Retailer’s Best Friend – Tells how eBay, Etsy & Amazon have all benefited from Pinterest.

82. Pinterest and the Hype Factor – Covers nonprofits and Pinterest.

83. Pinterest Isn’t Ready to Focus on Making Money – Covers a little bit of the breakup between Pinterest and Skimlinks.

84. Pinterest Rate of Referral Now Close to Twitter, Google+ – “In the study, Shareaholic aggregated data from more than 200,000 publishers that reach 260 million unique monthly visitors. It found that Pinterest grew from 2.5 percent of referral traffic in December to 3.6 percent of the referrals in January.

Just six months ago, Pinterest had only 0.17 percent of the referral traffic. Now it’s leagues ahead of Google+, MySpace, Reddit, YouTube, and LinkedIn, which is something for a site that’s still invite-only. In fact, it’s practically tied with Twitter and Google, which have 3.61 percent and 3.62 percent respectively.”

85. Why You Should Jump On The Pinterest Bandwagon – James Hicks makes his case for why Pinterest is different from Tumblr and why it’s a great product.

86. You are what you curate: why Pinterest is hawt – Om Malik says that Pinterest helps with self- expression. It helps project a “curated image of yourself that you are trying to project onto the world.”

Sites Similar to Pinterest:

87. Fancy – An upscale version of Pinterest

88. Gentlemint – Pinterest for Men – The current leader in Pinterest for men.

89. Mulu – A Pinterest for E-Commerce that helps support various causes.

90. Manteresting – Pinterest is mostly dominated by women, so here’s Manteresting for men.

91. Pingram – A combination of Pinterest and Instagram

92. Where is the Cool? Pinterest For Men – And another competitor to gentlemint.

93. More Clones (Slideshow) – A slideshow of the spin-offs

94. Cloned Featured in WSJ – An article about a startup that hasn’t even launched yet, dartitup.

95. Chill, It’s Pinterest for Video – With Pinterest you can pin videos. It’s obviously much less popular than images, so here’s the Pinterest for video.

What you can take away from similar sites:

Many of these sites are trying to solve a problem–there’s no Pinterest for men. Go on Pinterest at any time and you’ll likely see a lot of women pinning things that other females would appreciate. Gentlemint, Manteresting, Where is the cool and others are trying to emerge as the leader of Pinterest for men on the coattails of Pinterest.

Small Businesses and Pinterest

96. 6 Compelling Reasons You Should Use Pinterest for Marketing – If you’re on the fence about whether your brand should be on Pinterest, here’s an article detailing why it may be beneficial.

97. Can Pinterest Become The Next Lead Generation Tool? – Amber King makes the case that Pinterest is the next great social media marketing tool.

98. Chris Brogan on Using Pinterest for Business [Video] – “This is now outperforming Bing and Yahoo as search reference to her site”. Chris gives an example of how a business has already gotten success from Pinterest & explains how a business can use it. An interesting quote “I asked my mom ‘how do you buy thoughtful gifts’ and she said ‘you listen all year long’….so start keeping a pin of everything [you] think would be interesting to buy for people.”

99. Pinterest for business – These slides cover some best practices for businesses on Pinterest.

100. Should A Small Business Be Pinning On Pinterest? – “Pinterest is very much centered on one word: beauty. Beauty for an avid pinner goes beyond just pretty photos though- there is beauty all in the details of Pinterest. In the simplicity of both establishing an account and the site’s general clean layout design.”

“Use Pinterest as a boost but don’t make it integral to your entire business. By creating and curating a Pinterest account, chances are pretty high that you have a product you are selling and that it appeals to a wide audience, specifically women and creative types.”

101. What It Is And How to Use It For Business – This article gives the background on Pinterest and what it can do for businesses.

102. Why Small Businesses Cannot Overlook Pinterest – “Just creating a page and hoping people will find it probably isn’t going to cut it so take some time to develop a goals-based strategy that addresses the same tried and true questions: what’s your market, who’re your customers, and how can you excite their interest?”

103. Bessemer Ventures: Why We Invested In Pinterest – Jeremy Levine explains why he invested in Pinterest’s series A round. Levine says that one of the reasons Pinterest is a success is because it has tapped a core need of humans, the need to communicate with others.

What you can take away from small businesses and Pinterest:

Don’t go into Pinterest if it isn’t right for your company. Do some research first, and then create a strategy.

Have you found any good reads on Pinterest? Share them in the comment below!

About the Author: Zach Bulygo is a guest blogger for KISSmetrics, you can find him on Twitter here. You can also follow him on Google+.

  1. An excellent list considering Pinterest hasn’t been around very long. As someone who’s curious about the site I say, thanks Neil.

  2. Hi – Wondering if you have heard anything about the details posted in this link.
    http://www.knoed.com/thewindowseat/pinterest-change-your-terms-or-were-leaving/

    Should businesses be concerned??

  3. Hi Lea,
    Like the author of that post, I am not lawyer. It’s clearly ill-advised to pin copyrighted images and I wouldn’t recommend doing it. I don’t think it’s worth the risk.

    Here’s an article that I posted that may help you:

    http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/how_you_could_get_sued_for_using_pinterest.php

    Some of the comments offer better commentary than I can.

    It looks like it’s an ongoing conversation and I’m sure we haven’t heard the end of it.

    In the meantime, don’t pin images that do not belong to you.

    Just my recommendation :)

  4. Beth Brooklyn Mar 14, 2012 at 7:01 pm

    Don’t forget that if you’re looking for something more comprehensive on Pinterest Marketing, there are now books on the subject! They are available from Amazon and Barnes&Noble.

    Check out the Pinterest Marketing Bible: http://pinterestbible.com

  5. Great resources: a keeper!

    One more: 5 Reasons Pinterest is Like Catnip to Women: http://www.maternalinstinct.com/2011/11/21/5-reasons-pinterest-catnip-women/

  6. Thanks so much for listing 3dcart’s blog post as number 71.
    We also have a one more post that readers may find helpful:
    Pinterest 101: What Merchants Need To Know!
    http://blog.3dcart.com/pinterest-101-what-merchants-need-to-know/

  7. Great list guys! We love what you do!
    We also thought readers may be interested in our post: 9 Secrets for Entrepreneurs Using Pinterest
    http://tech.li/2012/02/9-secrets-for-entrepreneurs-using-pinterest/

  8. Hi Zach,

    Really a great compilation of Pinterest resources. I’ve still to read most of them in next days.

    A funny thing: I want to “pin” this article via firefox-pin-button to my social media board, and I can’t because this post doesn’t have any picture to do it….
    As it’s recommended by several people, if you talk about Pinterest, put at least a good image to be there ;)

    Then, just tweeted!

    Cheers,

    Gera

    • Hi Gera,
      Thanks so much for your feedback!

      I will pass this along and see what we can do for our next Pinterest post.

      Thanks for tweeting the article!

  9. I’ve got an article that has gotten a lot of discussion happening. It’s centered around self-promotion on Pinterest by Photographers.

    I’m working on a follow up post to it as well.

    Here it is (feel free to add into your content too): http://www.nuwomb.com/photographers-please-avoid-self-promotion-on-pinterest/

  10. Awesome analysis. Real indepth and informative. I’m gonna take a whole week to go through ‘em :)

    Do you think Pinterest will be successful in the long run also? Will it be just as visited and profitable in due course?

    • Totally late answer–but I do think so. I hear that their growth is flattening, but it seems people really love it & keep coming back. The only thing they need to figure out is monetization.

  11. if you find it that useful, why don’t you have a pinterest button? honestly, I don’t think pinterest will be even 1/10 of successful as stumble was, for example… not to mention other similar networks

  12. Great resource! Curious and eager to see how Pinterest is going to monetize in the next few months/years…

  13. Hello,

  14. Excellent article.. Useful for all the pinterest users..

  15. NIce article.It helped me a lot.

  16. Pinterest is the new Flickr without the limits. Flickr charges a yearly fee if you have too many images. But it also replaces Google Image search because it allows repinning and likes and comments and storing them on your own page. If you like image and niche photo searches; it will become more popular than Facebook and Flickr.

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