Content curation websites, especially image-based social networks such as Tumblr, Pintrest and Instagram have suddenly become kind of a big deal. Trendreports published a really good article in August 2013, entitled “Image is Everything: Why people are hooked on image-based social media”. Great read. Lots of perspective, they were right.
Pins versus Hearts
Take Goliath, as Pintrest. Perhaps the greatest revenue-generating potential of social media networks in 2014, especially among the female demographic. What Pintrest boasts is its scrapbooking functionality – allowing you to “pin” images you like from your computer, the internet or from the site itself. This is if you are interested in do-it-yourself and home decoration projects, and images focused on gardening, hobbies, fashion and crafts. And it seems that many people are. Pintrest has seen unprecedented growth in referrer traffic in 2013, expanding to 67% in share of overall visits and reporting at least 41% of social media traffic to e-commerce sites. With such high referring traffic, conversion rates and an enormous user base of 50 million monthly active users that spends, it is no doubt one of the top advertising social channels for advertising.
While all of this was happening in the forefront, there was David, I refer to as We❤It! The site was launched in 2011, one year after Pinterest, with a goal of encouraging users—membership free—to “heart” photos and images that inspire them and tell the story of who they are, what they like and love, and what they aspire to in the future. For the past 3 years, this site has been lurking in the background over-shadowed by Pintrest. Seemingly low-profile and unheard of to many, until recently discovered – and boy, what a gem this site is!
According to We❤It’s demographic profile, roughly 80% of the site’s monthly users are under the age of 24! At first glance the appeal to young audiences, particularly teenaged girls, is evident. The site looks, feels and operates a lot like Pinterest, though the photos are more Tumblr and Instagram-like in nature. But look deeper, the site is an avenue for its members to communicate purely through visual expression. We❤It is about self-expression, one’s “mood board”, unlike a visual scrapbook that is Pintrest. The site is positive and inspirational. There are more than 10 million beautiful photos splashed with messages about love, empowerment, life-coaching and friendship populated by its dedicated community of users. This is really opposite from product-oriented, quasi-catalogue that you get on Pinterest!
So apart from Huffington Post voting it as one of the 10 happiest places on the Internet, I heart it for the following reasons:
- Inspirational, expressive and creative versus a commercial scrapbook
- Untouched by the leagues of marketers (apart from the odd 3rd party ad serving)
- Personal, intimate and, (frankly) candid
I envisioned if I were to have a diary in the 21st century, I will use We❤It for this very reason.