Pinterest vs LoveIt in an Epic “Pin-Off”!

The Digital Pinning Challenge!

With Klout comes perks. With perks, comes responsibility. This week’s Klout perk was an advance membership to LoveIt. Being the adventurous soul that I am, I signed up and tried it out.

To give a caveat, I am not yet a member of the great mass of Pinterest Converts. Sure, I’ve had an account for a while, but I haven’t been using it that heavily (my wife, Runwiki, on the other hand, uses hers quite a lot). As such, I don’t face the dread of investing in another system for which I already subscribe. In other words, I’ve got no skin in the game on this one and so am reviewing LoveIt purely on its own merits.

What is it?

LoveIt is a digital pinning app extremely similar to Pinterest. You use it to “pin” images (and the articles they’re connected to) to your own “board” that you can share with others. In almost every functional respect LoveIt and Pinterest are identical — they even look the same!

How Does It Work?

You can sign up through Facebook (definitely the easiest method). Once you’ve got an account, you can add a “LoveIt” button to your browser’s task bar (by far the easiest pinning method), and you’re off to the races. You can subscribe to various topics/services, and create new topical boards to keep everything organized.

It has an incredibly simple interface, and it is those types of details that set it apart from Pinterest.

How is it Different?

As always when a new competitor shows up, the biggest question is: “What new thing are they bringing to the table?” In the case of LoveIt, it doesn’t appear like it’s bringing much new to the “Pinning” game at all — until you start using it.

Pinterest is a cool thing and it is obviously extremely popular. But it has it’s faults. LoveIt goes a long way to correcting many of them, making it much easier to find (and follow) information on the pictures that are pinned. These corrections go a long way, I think, to making it a superior “pinning” platform for both users and marketers. What faults are these and how are they corrected? I’ll explain:

Streamlined Pinning Process

When you are on a website and want to pin an image, for both services the best thing to do is hit that service’s browser button. When you do that in Pinterest, every image on that web page pops up — including those for ads. I’ve seen anywhere from one to over a dozen images pop up. And, further confusing things, often the main image of the page/post is not the first to show. With LoveIt these extra images are filtered out and all you see are the images from the actual page/post. This streamlines the pinning process and ensures the right image is tied to the proper page link.

The LoveIt image algorithm specifically targets the images in the actual post.

Pinterest grabs every image visible on the entire web page.

More Information Up Front

The best way to describe this is to say that LoveIt makes better use of screen real estate than Pinterest, thus reducing friction and increasing the likelihood of being followed.

When you click on an image in a Pinterest Board, what you see is the image itself, and, above that, who pinned it and a small text link to the site it came from. To the right of the main image are sharing links (Like, tweet, embed, email). But, to learn more about the sharer, others who have shared it, etc, you need to scroll down the page. Not so with LoveIt! Instead of using a single column in the center of the screen, LoveIt uses two columns to make the relevant information available without scrolling.

LoveIt’s two column layout allows for more immediate visual access to information and links.

With Pinterest you have to scroll to get to the more useful information and links.

Easier Organization

When you pin a pic using Pinterest, you have a drop down to select which topic you want to pic to be placed in. But what if you need to create a new board on the fly right then and there? You can do it in Pinterest, but you have to scroll down to the bottom of your topic list to reach the option — not very intuitive, most probably won’t find that without really looking. LoveIt has an “Add to New Collection” option right there directly under the Collection drop down menu. Simple, elegant, easy to find and use.

With LoveIt, all of your organizational options are up front and at your fingertips.

Where do I add a new category?

Wrap Up

I find LoveIt to be extremely similar to Pinterest, but more streamlined, accessible, and easier to use. As a new user to digital pinning, I have to admit that I prefer LoveIt to Pinterest.

But, while I am new to digital pinning, digital pinning is not new. LoveIt is just getting started in a field that is utterly dominated by Pinterest — can it break out? The LoveIt site promises an innovative development roadmap, highlighting increased user collaboration and discovery options. That sounds like a pretty good start to me, and will keep me checking back on their service. Pinterest is not resting on its laurels either, and they are also trying to tweak their service to increase user comfort. Unfortunately, so far Pinterest is looking a lot more at aesthetics and less about function (though now you can pin Vimeo videos on Pinterest, so that might go crazy if they can get YouTube on board).

The million dollar question (literally), is can LoveIt’s new energy and refined development approach overcome Pinterest’s massive user base? I don’t know the answer to that. The hundred thousand dollar question is, what exactly are people looking for in a pinning service? Just the pins, or a smooth ability to share those pins?

As for me, I’m going to keep using LoveIt. I like it.

About Rob McClellan

Rob is the founder of ThirdScribe, a unique author services platform and social network. As a naval officer and diver, he spent a majority of his career doing a lot more than you would think with a lot less than you can imagine -- a skill that has proven extremely valuable in the start-up world. You can follow him on Facebook, Twitter or Google+.

10 Responses to Pinterest vs LoveIt in an Epic “Pin-Off”!

  1. I couldn’t agree with you more. I love LoveIt! It offers the features I felt Pinterest was missing. I have a Pinterest account and have pinned exactly one thing. I know it is extremely popular, but wanted the source of the images. Great review!

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      You’re welcome, Susan! As someone who is obviously an advanced user of LoveIt, what other features do you like about it? Do you use the collaboration tools or are you more interested in just keeping your web links organized?

      And thanks a heap for commenting and spreading the word!

      • Rob, I love the collaboration tools. I am actually using a private board right now with a colleague to put together ideas for an upcoming tabletop competition. I am an event planner, so the private boards and collaboration are perfect for me to Love great ideas or items that may spark amazing creations.

  2. Wow! first off, I did not even know that Love It existed, so thank you and you explained the features and benefits of both so well. Thanks for the tutorial. I think I’ll “pin” it. 😉

  3. Wow! Thanks for the comparison article, Rob! We’ve been talking about it in the office this morning and we’re all excited to see how much you’ve been enjoying our site.

    Lisa, is open to the public and we hope you’ll check us out and let us know what you think too!

    Susan, thanks for spreading the love! Let us know how the tabletop competition planning goes and if there are other features you’d like to see us work on to make LoveIt even more useful for you.

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      You’re welcome, Kat! As I’ve been using the service I’ve picked up on a few more features — pinning youtube videos being one of them! Great work putting together such a solid product!

  4. Thanks so much for writing an easy-to-read explanation of visual sharing. I think LoveIt is easier and gives me a chance to do things privately that I could not do before. Appreciate your perspective!

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      You’re welcome, Frances!

      The privacy/collaboration tools are certainly proving to be popular. I didn’t have much of a chance to review those aspects of the service for this article, but I’ll be taking a closer look at them in the coming days.

  5. I was brand new to the whole ‘pinboard’ thing until last night and I decided to give Pinterest a spin. I spent all of two hours on it. It was nice. It was clean. But there were some serious drawbacks like not being able to batch upload original photography. Then I randomly came across LoveIt from the Klout website, and it was like, whoa! Pinboard curation but executed better! I haven’t used a lot of the community-building and discovery tools yet on LoveIt, but the very fact that it’s more balanced to men (sorry Pinterest, but I just don’t care about wedding cakes and home decoration) and allows batch uploading makes it the winner for me.

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