Of course, you’re familiar with Pinterest, but have you tried Pinterest Lens? Today I’m going to introduce you to Lens, explain how to use it, and share some of the interesting things I discovered when I took it for a spin.
For those of you who haven’t heard of it, Lens is a visual discovery tool that allows users to snap photos to do a search.
If you have the latest version of the Pinterest app on your Apple or Android device, you already have Pinterest Lens.
It’s simple to use.
Take out your phone, open the Pinterest app, and click the camera icon to the right of the search bar. Snap a photo of anything you see and Lens will search for similar images.
I found the concept pretty intriguing and so off I went, phone in hand with my Pinterest app at the ready.
I was on my way to snap photos when I saw the cutest little Pomeranian dog out for a walk with its owner.
I wondered what Lens would find if I took a picture.
In seconds there was a plethora of information about the Pomeranian breed. There were pictures of Poms, training tips, grooming hacks, and memes.
Pretty sweet, but a photo of a dog standing alone in bright sun was a little too easy. I wanted to see what would happen with a more complex photo.
I snapped an image of a drool-worthy office space and Lens immediately served up some content.
There were pictures of similar office spaces, lamps, furniture, and chairs. There were even DIY pins showing how to build a desk or upcycle a lamp.
Next, I wondered whether the app would work with an online image.
I opened the image of a kettle I’ve had my eye on and took a close up picture of my laptop screen. Amazon had a white one with a price of $80.
Lens promptly showed me the exact kettle as well as variations in the size, color, and brand. I could also easily click through to read consumer reviews of each.
But, there was an additional bit of information that surprised me.
Lens found the same product I’d seen on Amazon for only $69. I saved $11 in less than a minute.
There are plenty of less cumbersome ways to compare prices online. I do think using it this way opens the door to lots of possibilities.
What if you see a picture online of an outfit you can’t live without, but there is no information about where to find it for sale? You could click Lens and hopefully discover where to buy it, or at least find something similar.
4 Things You Need to Know About Using Pinterest Lens
- You can zoom in and out with your fingers. To focus, tap.
- You can use photos you’ve already taken. Lens makes it easy to click through your camera roll.
- The technology is in beta, so don’t expect perfect results every time. Currently, Lens can recognize over a billion objects, but it has a long way to go.
For example, I snapped a picture of a stuffed unicorn and was presented with an assortment of swords.
I took a picture of a banana and found plenty of recipes. I also got more information than I’ll ever need about dolphins and outdoor hammocks. I imagine it’s because bananas and dolphins and hammocks share a similar shape.
- When Lens gets it wrong, you can help it “learn” by clicking the plus sign (+) below the image you snapped. You’ll see, “Help! I’m still learning. What am I looking at?” Enter the relevant information about your photo.
3 Ways Bloggers Can Use Pinterest Lens
- It has the potential to be a great source to find new content ideas. Snapping pics on the fly no matter where you are creates a catalog of inspiration.
Open your camera roll and brainstorm using Lens.
The picture of a coffee mug you took will definitely show more coffee mugs. At first glance, you may think there is nothing that will make it to your blog.
Each mug may have different quotes, sayings, and illustrations. Are there printables you could create using these ideas? Is there a gift guide you could put together showcasing some of the more interesting mugs?
When you’re fresh out of ideas, snap pictures of things you see in your home, at the park, or while you’re shopping. You’ll find plenty of ideas!
- The next time you’re at a restaurant taking pictures of your food for Instagram, take one with Lens.
In a blog post, put together a couple paragraphs about your dinner. Talk about a dish you fell in love with, and then add links to similar recipes you found on Lens.
Before you know it you’ve got a roundup post that practically writes itself.
- As Lens shows you results that match your image, take note of the number of shares on each one. What stands out about that image on mobile? Is it the color, composition, title?
When you see images that are getting lots of engagement, think of a new way you can approach the subject in a post. There may be information you can add that readers want to know, or some complimentary idea you can share.
It’s going to be exciting to watch this new technology develop and to see how it will play out in our lives. I hope I’ve helped you understand Lens and given you a few ideas about using it in your day-to-day life.
What do you think about Pinterest Lens? I’d love it if you’d share some of your own unique ideas for using Lens.