Harper’s Bazaar’s pioneering work on Pinterest

Harper's Bazaar

Harper’s Bazaar

Social media is a constantly changing landscape with developers finding new ways to mould the web around human behaviour. The social networking site Pinterest has grown rapidly in the UK this year and this blog post looks at the pioneering way that some magazines have adapted to the change.

Scrap books and sticky tape

When a bride gets married inevitably she is bought wedding magazines so she can get inspiration for her big day.  A few years ago those magazines would have been picked up from the news agents, ripped up and stuck in a scrap book or pinned on a cork board.

Pinterest Harper's Bazaar1

Celebrity pin from Harper’s Bazaar

The social media site Pinterest takes this idea online and magazines are quickly adapting to this new audience. I have not bought a magazine in at least 5 years but over the past month I have been exposed to the content of Harper’s Bazaar and Seventeen Magazine through Pinterest.

Harpers Bazaar has more than three million followers on the site while Seventeen has just over 72,000. Surprisingly Vogue magazine which I would expect to have equal followers to Harper’s Bazaar only has 12,000 followers despite posting thousands of its images on the site.

This is partially due to the fact that Harper’s Bazaar have been using the site for longer but also because they upload a wider variety of pins. Tips on the latest nail polish sit along side the latest couture which appeals to big demographic.

How Pinterest works

Each user installs a button on their web browser called a “Pin It” button. When a user sees something they wish to save for later say a wedding bouquet they click the “Pin It” button and the site scans the website the user is looking at for all available pictures. Those pictures are then bought together in a separate window which the user can then choose to “Pin” to their “board”.

It works in the same way as pinning a note to a cork board, the board is then available for everyone to see. Users can also browse a suggested set of “Pins” on their main login page which reflects what searches or “Pins” they have added to their own “boards”.

So by adding a wedding bouquet to my Pinterest the site works out that I would probably be interested in other wedding “Pins” and so suggests this to me. Each photo contains a link back to the original site so for magazines if they add one photo it links back to their website and a series of other products I might be interested in.

By using social media effectively the magazines have opened up their unique content to a wider audience. The track backs from each individual “Pin” generate advertising revenue for the sites and increase the public’s awareness of the brands.

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