Chances are you’ve already heard of Pinterest. If you haven’t, Pinterest is a social network that allows you to organise and share visually pleasing things you find on the web; it’s a ‘virtual pinboard’.

Early adopters of the site have been ‘pinning’ like mad to create ‘boards’ for all manor of purposes, like planning weddings, storing favourite recipes, bookmarking design inspiration, collating hilarious pictures of kittens and so on.

There’s been quite a lot of noise around Pinterest since it launched toward the end of 2011, but with new social networks ten to a penny these days, I must admit it slipped my attention.

However, it’s only this week (yes, I know) that I thought I’d give Pinterest a proper look in. And I’m glad I did, because cutesy wish lists and pictures of kittens aside, it turns out that Pinterest may offer some nice opportunities where marketing is concerned.

A number of businesses have already adopted Pinterest in order to display and share their products, which has obvious benefits. But there’s potentially more wins to be gained through Pinterest than eyeballs alone.

Take the following screen grab of a ‘pinned’ Belkin Chef Stand as an example:

ipad2

The image shows links on multiple parts of a pin, which, for now at least are ‘do-follow’. Team these links with the vibrant sharing nature of the site and suddenly Pinterest becomes a little less easy to ignore.

There’s nothing drastically new here as Pinterest is essentially a visual alternative to bookmarking sites such as StumbleUpon or Digg. There’s also Tumblr, which adopts a similar content-sharing policy through it’s ‘repost’ feature. Whilst none of these sites are the definitive answer to better organic rankings, there’s every chance they’ll help.

I’m fully aware that I’m a little late to the party on this one but I would love to hear your thoughts about Pinterest and any examples you have seen in regards to using the site as a marketing tool.

Happy pinning.