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Monday, February 06, 2012

Sharing Affiliate Links on Pinterest part of their model?

I got an invite to Pinterest the other day, so I decided to play around with it to see what all the hubbub was about.  The road is littered with web clipping services and bookmarking engines but this is the one that has seem to have found its niche, especially with the female demographic.

So I found a few guitars I liked, and pinned them up.   To my surprise, I seemed to get some immediate engagement with people I neither followed nor followed me, which got me, what a perfect affiliate link vehicle.

So I decided it was worth a test.   I found some pictures of camera bags I like, and generated some affiliate links for them via the Google Affiliate Network.  I pinned them up.

Then I saw the related links:

and thought, wow, okay, so obviously someone else has thought of this too.

Accidentally or not, as it turns out there are a ton of affiliate links from GAN in Pinterest:

(unfortunately for whoever the original publisher was, most of the links are broken because of an encoding issue - the links on a lot of these products seem to have the ampersand URL encoded in the link so they don't work.


My first thought was, wow, they're gonna get spammed, big time on this.  But again, as it turns out they already know this.

This is from one of the boards in the search above.  They've already detected that the links go to GAN and warn the user as such.

So smart, this is part of the plan.  See how products convert on the affiliate networks, and then probably create their own affiliate network.  I'm guessing that's their business model.

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