Corporate Eye

Pinboard: communicating culture

collection of doors

Pinterest: huge growth among scrapbooking individuals, a big pile-on from marketers, and then even bigger interest in the Pinterest terms and conditions.

Pinterest changed their terms and conditions in the last few days, and as Knoed Creative say, there’s good news and the same news: Pinterest will not sell your content—apparently this was never the intention—but there is still a potential copyright issue over the content that you post.

There’s a fascinating post from a copyright/internet lawyer suggesting that in practice, the risk is low. (Note: Rick Sanders isn’t offering legal advice on this, and neither am I!) Of course, if you are a business, then the risk is likely to be higher than if you were pinning as an individual.

So here’s the play-it-safe suggestion:

  • only pin what you have the rights to, link, and attribute correctly
  • if you want people to freely pin your content, offer a Pin It button to make it clear
  • if you don’t want people to pin your content, you can add code to your site to prevent it

Assuming you do, in fact, represent a business, what could you use Pinterest for?

Scrapbooking (aka Pinterest) is all about the visual, so how about video or images of your products, employees, projects, or other images that tell your corporate story? Have a look at how the Kansas City Police do it…

Expanding this to other stakeholder areas… do you think your audience might be on Pinterest? If they are—and if it is worth your while to spend time on this rather than on other social networks—how about creating:

  • a Careers-oriented pinboard, with images from your careers events mixed with branding images; perhaps multiple pinboards, depending on the different groups you’re trying to attract. The US Army has some great Careers best practices on their website; they also use Pinterest to reach different stakeholders
  • a CSR oriented pinboard, with images of your CSR events and activities, employee projects… if you’re following the ‘show don’t tell’ rule, then show how CSR is integral to your products/services/culture. Examples: VanillaSoft’s microloan program on Pinterest
  • a press-kit style pinboard for each product launch, or for other significant news: images, video, links back to your site for more information. I don’t know whether Heineken, for example, are on Pinterest, but a search for ‘Heineken’ on Pinterest reveals a lot of interest!

Think moodboard, to get the style right – and have a look at these marketing campaigns to see what others have done on Pinterest to promote their brand.

If you’re thinking about internal comms, bear in mind that at the moment, Pinterest isn’t offering private boards, or boards for groups, so you do need to assume that anything you pin will be publicly available. How about investigating Gimmebar, Juxtapost or Clipix for an alternative?

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