Pinterest Battle – the final shot over the bow.

Alright, well this didn’t really go anywhere. Note to self; don’t start a blog battle the week between Write On Con wrapping up and school starting. Busy much?

So I’ll recap and wrap this up, because honestly, I want to blog about something I know about. Chickens! No, food! No, basketball! Crap, I’ll figure it out – but it won’t be Pinterest, and here’s why.

Pinterest gives me a headache. I have a love-hate with it because it’s so pretty – but so nebulous. I like it as a user. I find the Pinterest browsing experience quite soothing. However, I’m extremely hesitant to Pin anything – I’m just not up for the commitment. I’m not saying I’m in the majority here, and there’s no way of knowing if I am, other than anecdotally, but I’ve received quite a few emails and comments about this and most of my friends do the same – browse and enjoy, not promote and shop.

Also, Pinterest numbers are hard to come by online. There are success stories, but they seem to be geared toward a very unique market. Women over 35. Now, don’t get me wrong – this is a KILLER online buying community, but if I’ve learned anything from being in the games business – you don’t want to focus your earning potential on a sliver group, regardless of how aggressive they are about your product. (for years games focused on men age 18-30 and things didn’t really start to bloom until people realized that there was a blue ocean of consumers outside this group – more on that someday – perhaps – maybe – probably not).

Some companies like Zappos, have been very upfront about their low performing Pinterest shares, claiming they roll in at about .72 cents per share. For those of you playing along – that’s really low. Like – don’t bother low.

Here’s what that means in a nutshell. Zappos found that their users were 13 times more likely to share a purchase on Pinterest than on Twitter and 8x more likely than on Facebook than twitter- This is good, right? Not really because those shares didn’t convert into revenue. Here’s data that packs a punch – Zappos purchases posted on Twitter – garnered an average of $33.66 per order – while Facbeook posts brought in $2.08. That puts the .72 cents per share in some perspective.

So – a user on Pinterest with 36,660 users, posting to their board is roughly the turnover equivalent someone on twitter posting to their 720 followers. Yikes! How many people do you know with 36K people following their Pinterest account? How many do you know with 720? Yeah, me to.

I’m sure Zappos will figure this out. There is a lot to be tweaked, quality of pictures, the pin forward messaging – all that jazz has a profound effect on what gets a consumer to commit, but a 33 to one ratio is pretty hard to ignore.

The last thing that I just can’t get over is Pinterest’s inability to do things like geotargeting to consumers – don’t say that’s not important in social shopping or I’ll blow a CORK! – brand recognition (a survey done by Amazon found that most social shoppers identified Pinterest as their #1 social shopping experience, not ModCloth or Revlon or one of the other Pinterest success stories), the inability to promote yourself without driving attention to your competitors. It’s all too, well nebulous. Shiny, pretty, tranquil, I’ll give you that, but it’s as nebulous as all the nebulous nebula put together and stirred up with a nebulocal spoon in a nebulium coated pot.

In the end, Pinterest just isn’t for me. I’m not convinced it is worth my time at as product provider. However, I’ve never been a fan of shotgun marketing. I don’t see myself as having unlimited hours to tweak my marketing plans. I don’t subscribe to the adage of ‘any view is a good view’ – I’m more in the mindset of ‘a trackable view with discoverable data will help you refine your marketing efforts and maximize your time spent/product sold ratio’.

But that’s just me. 😉