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California business startup Pinterest explodes in popularity

Many readers may have heard of Pinterest in recent months. As a new business startup out of Palo Alto, California, the site has exploded in popularity, reaching the 10 million user mark faster than any other site before, including even Facebook and Twitter. Indeed, it had 17.8 million visitors from the U.S. alone this past February.

What seems to be driving the popularity of Pinterest is its sheer simplicity. There is nothing complex to learn or to master. Users simply pin items of interest that they find around the web to their board on Pinterest, and then they share it with others. In a news story about the social media site, one user likened it to how people will take something out of a magazine and then put that on a wall.

One other big reason behind the rapid growth of the site is women. Women make up 85 percent of traffic on the site, and 65 percent of the users overall. That is a big difference from most early Internet startups, which tend to appeal to a largely male crowd. Moreover, women age 35 and older make up more than half of the site -- another stark difference to other startups that tend to appeal to younger crowds.

However, a business success story does not just happen overnight. It requires careful planning, identifying a target audience and dedication. In this case, the creators of Pinterest made sure the site was easy to use, and it may well be that they identified women as their key demographic early on. Any other business startup in California would do well to follow their example by creating a well thought-out business plan.

Source: Santa Cruz Sentinel, "Women driving growth of Pinterest," Barbara Ortutay, March 12, 2012

1 Comment

When I first heard of Pinterest, the first thing that ran through my mind was it was a social media site made for women. You mentioned that the majority of the users back then were women, right? Even so, there are some businesses out there that are looking into using Pinterest to market to men as well. I'm seeing this as one of the prominent social media sites today, and I do think that they'll continue to grow.

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