Last week I came across this infographic from Flowtown and Column Five (which I did NOT find on Pinterest, but I did pin to my Infographics board).
They claim that Pinterest owes its addictive nature to a combination of Design (simple and clean, image-heavy, hidden action buttons), Critical Mass (satisfaction of the urge to hoard images and content), Refuge (from social media fatigue with constant status updates and privacy concerns), Accessibility (or rather the ability to use Pinterest without being on Pinterest), Get Popular (all new pins are placed on the front page giving every user a few seconds of potential fame), and I Can Do That (encouragement of the addiction to new and creative ideas).
In analyzing my own Pinterest addiction, I agree with some of their assertions and came up with a few of my own:
· Design is critical; Pinterest is clean, uncluttered and simple to navigate. The high quality of the photography contributes to the appeal and impression of quality information.
· Relaxing refuge – I find Pinterest relaxing and a welcome refuge from Facebook fatigue. Pinterest gives me a community feeling without the concern that I’m being rude for not commenting or liking.
· Novelty – Pinterest is like stepping out into a new, more interesting neighborhood. I like new and different experiences, and I think most people do, especially safe ones. I often view “everything” in Pinterest just for the newness. This contrasts with a site like foodgawker, which is also well-designed and addictive – but limited to food.
· Easy – Like leafing through a magazine, scrolling through Pinterest allows endless passive viewing, along with the ability to bookmark (re-pin) items of particular interest. At the end of a long day, sometimes I just want to scroll…
· Learn new random things – Information is brain candy and I’ve learned a lot of new things while perusing Pinterest: there’s a cliff in Ireland with my grandfather’s name and Bill Gates has given away half of his net worth. And I already knew Pinterest was addictive – but now I know why.
· Aspirational bucket list – Pinterest gives me ideas of future accomplishments, and helps me keep track of them – a waterfall in Oregon, how to make a rug using scraps and a hula-hoop, a vegetarian stuffed pepper recipe, and O’Brien’s cliff in Ireland – are all part of my liftetime bucket list in compelling visual form.
Quality design, easy, educational, relaxing and aspirational – that’s crack for me, and I find myself visiting Pinterest very (too?) frequently. Do you find Pinterest addictive? What aspects do you find most compelling?