There’s no denying it: I’m basic. I’m fully prepared to point the finger of blame at Pinterest for it, too. They’re so on top of their UX game that the likelihood of me escaping the cycle of recipes, outfit inspos and other “basic” basics is slim to none.
Personally, my favorite Pinterest update had originally been the “send pin” feature. A small, but hugely convenient addition that gave the platform a more “social” feel compared to the search engine effect they’ve been chasing. That is, until the news came that users could now start a chat about a shared pin. Oh, the possibilities! Girls, can I get a hallelujah?
How many times have you sent a laughing-so-hard-I’m-crying pin to your best friend, but you get no response? You might get a notification saying they pinned it themselves, but that’s as lame as getting an “lol” in response to a great story. You could text her, but taking that extra step outside of the app is irritating. Behold, Pinterest messages.
Once a pin is sent, a chat window populates in the bottom left corner of the screen. After closing out of the chat window, a bubble with your friend’s profile image will hover in its place. I find this to be annoying when I’m trying to sift through pins, so I exit out of that, too. Not to worry though. Pinterest holds your sent pins/messages in an inbox alongside the notifications.
As happy as I am for this update, I’m finding myself more curious as to what brands will do with it. On the one hand, you’ve been given a great way to communicate with true brand advocates; think, rewarding your best (favorite) community members with the first glimpse of new content or product launches. Perhaps this is another avenue for customer service issues to be addressed.
However, is messaging a feature that should remain a user-to-user interaction? Does it push the brand/consumer relationship into awkward territory? If there is one take-away from the backlash Facebook is facing right now about their Messenger App, it’s that consumers want to be able to opt in or out of having their privacy invaded by a third party. Starting a chat over a pin unannounced may be an unwelcomed gesture regardless of the intensions. Perhaps brands should tread carefully as they explore this new option (if they have the guts to at all). A little creativity and relationship building can go a long way.
Either way, you can find me on Pinterest to see what I’m about. I, for one, am open to pins and messages, so show me your favorite things!
Top image from Denys Prykhodov / Shutterstock.com