By Stewart Gandolf
Chief Executive Officer
Does anyone still need to be convinced that Pinterest should be part of your hospital marketing plan? The typical objections might be that this social media platform is still too new…it may not deliver any value…or they’re still in a beta test phase.
A conservative approach to online fads and fancies is reasonable. (This morning’s “latest-and-greatest” can disappear overnight.) But Pinterest is proving its effectiveness and stability.
No doubt you’ve at least taken a peek at this “virtual pinboard” of images and videos. Clearly it’s a compelling and highly visual content-sharing platform that networks people with common interests such as home decorating, fashion design or recipes. And it’s proving its effectiveness in driving traffic (i.e., a strong female demographic) for early adopter hospital and medical practice sites.
Here are three reasons why you shouldn’t ignore Pinterest:
- One of the “big three.” Just behind the well established Facebook (#1) and Twitter (#2), the upstart Pinterest is now regarded as the third most popular social network. As of this moment, there are about 20 million users onboard. And, according to Digital Journal, “Pinterest drives more referral traffic than Google Plus, LinkedIn and YouTube combined.”
- Registration is now open. As of this month, Pinterest moved from “invitation only” to “open to all.” On the surface, this seems like a distinction without a difference since the introductory invitation process was no barrier to getting started. The real difference here is that Pinterest has come of age and moved away from appearing to be a tentative, let-see-if-this-catches-on concept. What’s more, they’ve made Pinterest available to new users via their Facebook and Twitter login. If “invitation” was holding back anyone, that objection is now gone in the speed of a couple clicks.
- A startup with (financial) stability. There are dozens of wanna-be social media platforms that never make it in business. But Pinterest—which began in March of 2010—is likely to survive a while. Notwithstanding its strong and growing popularity with users, this fledgling enterprise recently took in about $100 million in investor funding. There are no guarantees in business, but $100 million and 20 million users is a strong basis for near term stability.
Hospitals, medical practices and other providers can use Pinterest for patient involvement, patient education, community awareness and in support of many other healthcare marketing objectives. And if you or someone in the organization needed to be convinced, it’s time to stop dragging your feet and get pinning.
For more on this subject, see our earlier post, Pinterest: Four Important Considerations Before You Board, Pin or Repin.