Off the Beaten Path: 6 Unusual Ways to Use Pinterest

Image by via flickr

By Hannah Clark | 1 year ago | No Comments

Pinterest is no longer just about food, clothes, and weddings. We have learned in the past the potential for business on this social network is great, and many awesome brands are now using it to generate revenue and gain customer loyalty. While many still rely on the social scrapbooking service for these traditional uses, lots of other creative applications are emerging.

Did you know that Pinterest is also a great way to organize music? How about using Pinterest to find your lost pet, or report from a war zone? Take a look at a few unconventional ways people are using Pinterest.

To Bust Criminals Screen Shot 2014-06-26 at 1.48.17 PM The days of seeing “Most Wanted” posters are behind us. The Pottstown, PA, Police Department has found a much more modern way to catch bad guys. By putting up mugshots on a Pinterest board, this police department is getting the word out to a much wider audience. They create pins that include a person’s mugshot, crime, and last known address.

To Reunite Families with Their Lost Pets Screen Shot 2014-06-26 at 1.54.06 PM On May 20th. 2013, Oklahoma was hit by some of the most destructive tornadoes in the area’s history. These destroyed 13,000 homes, caused more than $2 billion in damaged and displaced 33,000 people from their homes. But what about all the pets? What happened to them?

In hopes of reuniting animals with their owners, the Facebook page, Moore Oklahoma Tornado Lost and Found Animals, was created. Anyone affected by the tornado was asked to post images of their lost pets, or post pictures of pets they found in the aftermath of the storm.To accelerate the process, the Pinterest accounts “Tornado Cats” and “Tornado Dogs” posted photos which separated the pets by breed and color.

By having all the lost animal photos organized, it was easier for people to share the images and find the missing owners. A nice little plus to both of these accounts was that there was a board created and dedicated to showing the happy family reunions in the end.

To Organize Music Screen Shot 2014-06-26 at 3.25.16 PM I have a terrible habit of collecting a ton of music, and never taking the time to sit down and organize it all. My friend and coworker Mohamed Zahid has found an incredible solution to this problem by simply using Pinterest! By adding videos into boards that are classified by genre, Mo can easily find exactly what he is looking for without any scrambling or scrolling.

To Report the News Screen Shot 2014-06-26 at 2.39.26 PM Vice News is an international news channel that was created specifically for a generation who is digitally connected. Amid the skateboard videos, do’s and don’ts, drug guides and fashion spreads, Vice News has become a place that serious journalism can live. The Vice Media Pinterest account has a ton of interesting boards, including art, food, travel and tech, but one of their most interesting and popular boards seems to be for Vice News.

Here the user scrolls through photos and videos from all corners of the globe, learning about a different news story with every image. Many of these photos don’t give the full story, which encourages readers to go to their main website to find out what is really going on.

To Report the News (From a War Zone) Screen Shot 2014-06-26 at 3.11.57 PM When it comes to reporting from a warzone, the last place many people would expect to find this would be Pinterest. However, New York Times Senior Writer C.J. Chivers has found a new and interesting way to use this social networking tool.

It is on his Pinterest account that we can find boards leading you to see images of arms trafficking and identification, as well as unsafe weapons handling and even images from while he is on assignment. Not only do images like these show what is going on in nations far away from our own, but also tell an incredible story.

To Get a Job at Pinterest Screen Shot 2014-06-26 at 2.21.14 PM When it comes to finding a job, we’ve all done our fair share of wild and out there things to gain a potential employer’s attention. For Eliza Doton, the dream job was to work at Pinterest and what better way of getting there than showing Pinterest how serious she was about working for them. To make her resume stand out, Eliza made it into a pin — something that “only a passionate fellow pinner could understand.”

Of course, this awesome pin nearly instantly went viral, and she was quickly contacted by the people at Pinterest.

By using Pinterest in unconventional ways, businesses are able to breathe new life into this social network, as well as show how important it is not compartmentalize Pinterest as only for retail. Pinterest has now evolved into a place where you can find exactly what you’re looking for, sometimes you just have to go looking.

Hootsuite Enterprise recently announced Insights For Pinterest Marketers (BETA). Find out more or Follow Hootsuite on Pinterest.

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carol 5pts

these are very good examples of creativity! I love when things are done unconventionally. Pinterest began as a tool to collect recipes and craft ideas, but now it is a place to collect ideas.  I like it!

Helen Doron English
Helen Doron English 5pts

As a huge fan of Pinterest for business, I find it is terrific for information sharing. For example, I set up a public board on "The Advantages of Bilingualism" which has been cited by several media sources as the definitive source for the latest on bilingualism.

LaurentLaforge1 5pts

Your post cannot be pinned on Pinterest (images cannot be fetched)! Too bad.

wobable 5pts

The use of Pinterest  for wanted criminals has one major flaw. If a pin is repinned, and then the original pin is deleted, the copy remains (ie it is like a manual RT not a native RT). Why is this an issue? Because at some point the criminal well be caught and then face a court process. In the UK (and I would imagine many other jurisdictions) the wanted poster still being available would then be prejudicial to a fair trial... With the potential for the Cummins all to get off.

I admit it is unlikely, but it is a risk and something to be aware of (I have direct knowledge of this issue as I work for a law enforcement agency).

Jeanne 5pts

@Annie Penn HS Pro Put the pin it add-on on your browser

Rebecca 5pts

Another board I thought was interesting was the BC Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure:  Highways and roads - but lots of interesting pins have shown up in my feed!

RaquelMRamirez 5pts

Super cool idea for a post. I love the creativity and out side the box thinking it inspires for people in various {no so glamorous) jobs.  Thanks!