Pinterest is another one of those services whose data I suspect would be very interesting to look at. For the most part, it’s starting to be picked up commercially as a gallery option for a lot of companies. It gets very heavy usage from the handcrafts sector which is how I encountered it first, and then also via the surf magazine world (where I saw it starting to get a lot of use).
Most of the people I know who actively use Pinterest for themselves are women. I’d be interested to see how much of that is based in reality or whether that’s limited to my particular circle of boards. For the limited number of boards I follow, there is a heavy increase in usage between about 6 in the evening and 11 at night. There are a lot of specialist boards (I follow one which handles antique ink bottles only).
Quite a few stores are starting to implement pinterest links and this is interesting because one of the uses I have gotten out of it is as a visual shopping list. It also gets used as a bookmark service (see all the recipes that get bookmarked on it) and as a gallery (see how companies are using it to show case their products).
So I’d like to map out how it gets used by different people and how it gets exploited commercially. There is some evidence to suggest that it drives serious sales for companies using their pinboards as store fronts and that it may be more effective than other social media in this respect. I’d be interested to see if it’s possible to get a global picture of this, and whether some sectors do better than other sectors in this respect. I’d like to have a look at international traffic flows and whether different cultures target different uses of the pinboards.
I’m also interested in how the pins are categorised. Unlike – for example – Flickr – pinterest doesn’t really use tags – it uses categories. I’m not certain how its search works but my guess is it’s part category based and part text content based and this is interesting because usage patterns suggest that repinners very often don’t change the text accompanying a particular pin.
I’m really going to see if I can figure out a way of structuring how I would do this if I had a chance. It would create one giant infographic I suspect.