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Consultant’s diary: Winning the war on Pinterest

July 30, 2012

keep calm and pin something

Social media strategist Ike Pigott once observed that using social media and third-party sites (like can be like building on sand. All the work you put into something like your Facebook page can disappear in an instant.

So I found with my Pinterest account earlier this summer. The good news is I won an important battle. The better news is that as your consultant, I’ll do battle for you while you run your business.

My trouble with Pinterest started in June when I discovered I could no longer pin items to my board. In Facebook, you can passively look at items or you can update your status, share apps, play games, upload photos and videos and a whole lot more.

In Pinterest, all you can do is pin. (And Like, but it’s kinda lame.) You pin items from other sites, you re-pin cool things from your friends’ boards or you upload photos for new pins. That’s the ball game.

As a business owner, you never want to find yourself locked out of a critical function. Imagine if your sales run on calls, and the phone company decided last night to limit your calls to 911 only. Yikes.

My next step was to contact customer service. Pinterest uses Zendesk to process its service tickets, so I turned one in. Like many social media companies (and companies in general), Pinterest does a terrible job of listening and responding to customers.

(I had discovered this on a previous ticket trying to get one of my pinboards fixed. No responses after 30 days, even with reminder notes from me.)

I waited and waited and waited. Pinterest has no other way to reach them, not through other social media or even email or phone.

I made one last ditch effort. I wrote a letter to Ben Silbermann, founder and chief executive officer of Pinterest.

Maybe that did the trick, because a couple of weeks later, I received an email from the community manager. She had looked into both service tickets and explained what had happened. Sort of.

I still don’t know what put me in Pinterest jail, so I don’t know how to avoid the same fate. (I’ll email her to see if I can get clarification.) I cautiously tested the pinning, and it seems to be working normally again. Why I was limited in the first place, I may never know.

(My backup plan was drastic: Set up a new account and start over. Months of work reset with a frozen legacy account. Fortunately for me, it didn’t come to that.)

You, the busy professional or business owner, should not have to deal in the minutiae of how to block annoying people on your Facebook page or set up a Twitter widget. You should not have to write to Ben Silbermann to get a simple issue resolved.

That’s why I’m here. That’s what I do.

Because I’m never satisfied with mediocre. And because I will fight fight fight for you and your company.

For now, I pin. I find Pinterest a valuable tool to curate info, cover live events and explore trends. One battle down, many more to go.

Illustration: Socially Sorted

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. July 30, 2012 11:10 am

    Congratulations on winning the war, Wade!

  2. July 30, 2012 1:19 pm

    Whoo hoo! Glad you’re out of jail. I’ll be curious to know their explanation of what landed you there in the first place.


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