Using Pinterest for generating refferal traffic : Newspapers

Pinterest is the latest channel media outlets and journalists are exploring. For those of you unfamiliar with Pinterest, it is a ‘virtual pinboard’ that allows you to organize and share visual content either found on the Web or uploaded from your computer or mobile device. Think inspiration, mood boards – but online – that can be shared. While Pinterest is still in the open beta phase, quite a few media outlets have set up shop and have started populating multiple boards. The Wall Street Journal, USA Today and the Los Angeles Times are three examples of major newspapers that have embraced Pinterest.

The Wall Street Journal

The WSJ’s Pinterest account currently hosts 36 boards and 899 pins and 74 likes. The Journal’s primary focus has been the promotion of its own visual content. The themes of its boards are primarily sections found within the paper (e.g., Front Pages, Arts & Entertainment, Tech & Gadgets) and the images included in each board are ones found either in the paper or from within other WSJ-owned properties (e.g., WSJ: The Magazine, WSJ’s Instagram account).

Why it works: Many of the visuals pinned by the Journal link back to content from The Wall Street Journal Online, making Pinterest another potential avenue for generating referral traffic.

USA Today

The interesting thing about USA Today’s use of Pinterest is that while there’s an account dedicated to the paper as a whole, there are also additional accounts focused on specific topics of interest – technologystylebooks and college. The main account currently hosts 22 boards and 805 pins and 126 likes, while the topic-specific accounts aren’t far behind.

Why it works: USA Today is regularly pinning content found and/or produced outside of its purview, adding credibility and expanding the potential topics it can ‘cover’ on Pinterest.

Los Angeles Times

Content from The Los Angeles Times’ Pinterest page maps closely to the topics you’d find in the paper. While its 60 boards,1501 pins and 232 likes focus on very approachable topics with broad appeal (food, design, fashion, homes, etc.), there’s also a strong emphasis on localized content. For example, in addition to boards dedicated to the Oscars, there are others dedicated to Southern California moments, as well as LA-centric landmarks and events.

Why it works: Regular readers get familiar types of content in a different format, including local items; non-regular readers will find the pop-culture and travel related content appealing.

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