The use of social media by cultural institutions are increasingly being used also in Italy, and are now numerous museums that have profiles on the major social networking platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Flickr and YouTube.
As announced a few weeks ago , our museum has recently extended its online communication opportunities by opening an account on Pinterest, the social network based on sharing of images, which is witnessing increasing number of users around the world.
In the last week some cultural professionals have questioned - at the international level-on the role that this platform will also have the museums , and gladly we join in this debate to expose some thoughts about the use of Pinterest by Palazzo Madama.
As part of the digital strategy of the institution, the Senate is trying to differentiate the use of different social networks depending on the content to communicate, share for reference and characteristics of every platform.
Consistent with these guidelines, it was decided to use the profile of the Senate on Pinterest primarily to provide users with visually appealing images of collections and sites relating to the creation, in the perspective not of self-promotion but of service, transmission of content possibly of interest to users of the social network.
In addition to this approach, shared by some of the approximately 30 museums in the world that for the time being adopted Pinterest, it was decided to also use the account to make visible the interests of the institution, as well as to bring out the values that inspire the community of professionals working in the context of the museum and the issues that involve his audience.
To this end, the message boards have been created so that not only are titled as "works of art" or "Garden", but also "Visitor studies", "Museum ideas" and "Madama Knit".
The decision to use titles and captions in Italian and English was dictated by the fact that Pinterest allows you to establish contacts in a fluid and dynamic manner, based not so much on the re-creation in the digital environment of existing relationships in the real world, as the building new relationships between individuals characterized by common interests, regardless of their nationality or place of residence.
Use a foreign language in addition to Italian so it seemed an appropriate way to enhance the communicative value of the images and to extend the relations of the Senate potentially internationally.
In summary, the purpose of the of the Senate on Pinterest can be articulated as follows: interface with multiple communities of interest such as inserting porters and breeders of quality content.
This objective aims to be pursued on the one hand attracting the attention of users of the social network, and the other - using the "repin", "comment" and "like" - proving to be an open institution to incorporate content produced by other users, with a view to interacting many-sided and not of unidirectional relationship.
It seems important to emphasize that the inclusion on the notice boards of content selected by the Senate but produced by other users face so that they become, therefore, subject-that-even involuntarily involved in the production of content for the museum.
To broaden the possibilities of co-creation of content, you're thinking of opening to the direct contribution of other users some message boards in order to enable a behavior of active participation and voluntary.
Given the novelty of use and the limited number of cultural institutions that until now have adopted the platform, the potential of Pinterest for museums are still largely to be explored, not least in terms of marketing, its features seem, however, at least strengthen the formulation of a series of questions: the perception of authority and credibility of the museums in the future will be influenced by its culture of sharing online? The digital environment will provide unprecedented opportunities for museums to interact with new actors and to extend their area of expertise?
Even now, you can probably assume that Pinterest will provide at least the museums a further opportunity to reflect on their mission and their role in the age of digital communication.