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These days, it seems as though a new social media app appears to the masses every day.  There are so many to sift through, it can be difficult to choose which ones will work best for you, let alone figure out what they actually do.  For many, Pinterest is one of these apps – you know you’ve heard of it but may not know why you’ve heard of it, what makes it so great or how it can help.

Pinterest is an online platform that allows you to organize and share things in the form of images or video.  When you find an image or video, known as a “pin”, that piques your attraction to, say, beekeeping, you simply upload it to your Pinterest account so that others who share your beekeeping passion can see it and share it too.  Pinterest then allows you to organize all of those posts in ‘boards’, customized by you to include anything you want, such as recipes, great quotes, historic images, agriculture, fitness, technology, etc.

Like many social networks, the learning curve isn’t very steep.  Once you download it to your computer, it configures itself to your web browser so you can instantly pin anything interesting to your Pinterest account, while browsing the web.  A great example is if you found an image of a young child learning to milk a cow by hand at a local fair.  By hitting the ‘Pin It!’ button within your browser, choosing the Board you want to pin it to, then including a text comment (“A young farmer in the making!”), the last step is clicking Pin. There isn’t a need to worry about copyright infringement either, because by using Pinterest’s application, the picture is linked back to the original source. That can be helpful if want to promote a picture, recipe, and action taking place around the farm with a more in-depth article.

Pinterest is meant for those with a specific interest, and helping to organize those. If you’re in the beginning stages of building a new barn to expand your operation, Pinterest can be used to find and organize barn designs and features of other barns around the world that you might like to include in your barn.  You can either search Pinterest for existing design pins or surf the web to pin what you find to your board.  

On top of being available for your web browser on your desktop, Pinterest is also a free app for download to Apple and Android devices.

Like most social media platforms, you can find and follow other Pinterest users who share your interests.  The network also allows liking, commenting and re-pinning from the Boards of other users. Over time, a person could grow a following for their insights, photos and information that other users are looking for. At last count, Pinterest boasted over 11 million users. In North America, women make up the majority of Pinterest users, which should be kept in mind when developing content for the network. For agriculture, there can be tremendous opportunity when working to connect food and farming, with the thousands of recipes that users pin and re-pin daily. Even pinning one or two pictures or videos a week can show a consumer how farmers care for their animals and provide safe food, connecting the process to the plentiful food on the Pinterest table.