In Shelby’s “My on and off and now on again relationship with Pinterest” post yesterday, one of her key points was that “the Tom Cruise effect” pushed her away from Pinterest before she returned to this very visual social network. I’ll get back to that in a moment.
This is not our first time addressing Pinterest as a topic for our weekly “She Said, He Said” blog post exchange. Back in March, I felt that “Pinterest lacks interest but Path holds promise,” and to some extent I still feel that way. Then in April, I came back with “Pinterest is Instagram on Steroids,” as I realized the power of the Pinterest mobile app. The mobile app is still where I get the most bang for my Pinterest buck. I’ll address that a bit later, but first I need to get back to the “Tom Cruise effect.”
The Tom Cruise effect on shiny new social networks
In her post yesterday, Shelby discussed how when she was a teenager all her friends loved Tom Cruise and because they did they expected her to as well. She rebelled and preferred Christian Slater. When it comes to social media networks, are you more like Shelby or more like her friends? When it came to Pinterest, I was more like Shelby.
Lots and lots of my social media friends jumped on Pinterest and raved about it. Most of these friends were women or connected to the visual arts in some way. I could not find any way to embrace the network until I had an iPhone and discovered the mobile app. Then I slowly started to embrace it in two ways. First, as a camera app that allowed me to not only take and share pictures but also curate them in the cloud – all simultaneously. Then you add to that the ability to scroll through interesting images shared by my friends when I had downtime and Pinterest started to be a winner.
Tom Cruise or Christian Slater?
I love Shelby’s analogy because both these gentlemen were and still are popular. They have different audiences and fans that sometimes cross over – just like social networks. My favorite networks at the moment are Twitter and Path, but that does not stop me from using Facebook, Pinterest, Google+, LinkedIn, Instagram and probably others I have forgotten.
Focus most of your energy on the networks that feel right and natural to you. Don’t completely ignore the others, but know you only have so much social media bandwidth. If Pinterest is easy for you to use and embrace, then by all means spend time there. When you spend time on networks that feel comfortable for you, the audience will find you.