UPDATED NOVEMBER 2022: Shuffles is now available to the general public, aka you don't need an access code to join!
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opportunity for brands.
The Shuffles App is a content platform for creating collages and moodboards.
The new Shuffles App is a sensation, and people can't get enough of it.
I've been using the Shuffles App for about a month now, and features are already improving. Shuffles has gone viral on TikTok, and seems to be a magnet for artists, Etsy sellers, and anyone on Pinterest.
So, let's start with the central question:
What is Shuffles?
Shuffles is a social media app for creating interactive collages. For brands, the potential digital marketing opportunities are huge. This is content creation meets product discovery, but in a subtle, not salesy way.
Created by TwoTwenty, Pinterest's innovation team, the Shuffles app is now out of its initial test phase. TwoTwenty appears to have succeeded in creating something truly new, innovative and appetizing for users.
Focus: mood boards, with individual items automatically linking to a source URL
Early Aesthetic: Slightly vintage, aesthetic / artistic feeds, lots of pop culture.
Content Discovery: Organized into four sections: "For You," "Popular," "Hashtags," and "Recent."
Profile Pages: Auto-filled out with your Pinterest info
Opportunity for Brands: Get free eyeballs early, reach younger generation and new audience, product sales pages can be linked, but aren't front and center. The art comes first here, which isn't a bad thing.
Every piece of a collage on Shuffles can be made clickable. The app automatically links to an external website, online store, or Pinterest account where the item or object originated.
Collages created on Shuffles can be shared directly to Pinterest with animations and links intact. Users can also send collages to their phones as images for sharing across other networks.
For brands, the emphasis on interactive content is a new opportunity to engage with their audience and drive traffic from the app to their website.
The two main features that enable this are link pins and ReShuffles.
The ReShuffles feature lets users remix content they’ve found on Shuffles. All ReShuffles include a link to the original creator, so more remixes mean more visibility, backlinks, and traffic.
Producing content designed for remixing and sharing is a recipe for success on
any social platform.
Marketing your Brand on Shuffles:
You'll want to park a profile and grab that early adopter advantage if you're in:
•Retail (especially home decor, streetwear, the party industry, wedding and beauty)
•Education (think teacher supplies, classroom inspo, organization)
•Art (if you're an aspiring artist in music or visuals, run, don't walk)
•Travel / Lifestyle
•Etsy Sellers (The Shuffles App is a natural fit for sellers of handmade products, graphic designers selling downloadables, party supplies, and anyone who appreciates craftsmanship)
Here's a glimpse at what its like to use the app:
Shuffles App by Pinterest Review
Shuffles was invite-only but is now available to the general public. Users once needed a a code to access the app. (Side note: this was a brilliant move on the part of Pinterest. The conversation about Shuffles was all about access – how to get a code, where to buy a code and how to sell your soul for a code. Nobody was talking about the user experience when everyone is focused on getting access. As a result, user adoption may have been sluggish.)
The main event for Shuffles is creating digital mood boards. The aesthetic veers toward a vintage/scrapbook feel, which is right up Generation Z's alley.
But here's where it gets smart: the images are automatically linked to a source (usually). This is a content creation AND product discovery app! That's the value for brands – the clickable objects, the super subtle e-commerce back-end. Brands, NFT's, Etsy Shops – nearly anything can be linked on Shuffles, although you don't control the source URL. The app does that automatically, and so far that seems to work pretty smoothly.
Now, you may think product discovery is what Pinterest does. But Pinterest is not a platform for creating content. It's not social media either. It's just product discovery.
Shuffles fills a critical void for the Pinterest business platform
As far as the user experience of Pinterest, pins are created outside the app, not within Pinterest.
Think about how much time users of Pinterest spend OUTSIDE THE APP on Pinterest-related pursuits. This is a struggle for lots of apps, by the way. And it's why you're seeing lots of changes on social media. Instagram created Reels not just because they wanted the eyeballs drawn by short-form video, but also because they wanted users creating Reels inside the app – not in Canva, or Photoshop, but on Instagram. Pinterest has that same issue. That's a missed opportunity cost which Shuffles seeks to recoup, at least with the next generation of users.
Pinterest did start off pretty similar to what Shuffles is right now. The app is cleverly tied to your Pinterest photo boards and lets you easily pull content from Pinterest into Shuffles. But while Pinterest isn't a content creation app, Shuffles is definitely for creating content.
If Instagram Stories and a 1980s Smash Journal had a baby, and that baby had a nanny named Pinterest ... it would be Shuffles.
Shuffles lets users bring in photos from their Pinterest or their phone's camera roll, and then an automatic cut-out tool turns those images into stickers.
They need to nail that cut-out tool before Shuffles is ready for the masses. [UPDATE: The cutout tool is much better as of mid-November 2022!]
In-app editing functions are good, and improving. Features include the usual filters, some TikTok-like animation effects, an easy way to arrange layers, a new parallax effect, and more.
The discovery portion of the app is something between TikTok and Instagram. You can search by hashtag, and there's even a "For You" section which curates personalized recommendations.
Pros and Cons of Shuffles App by Pinterest
Pros of Using Shuffles Now:
Get in early, claim your username
Obtain coveted invite codes and give them to followers/friends
Organic reach is always greater in the beginning
It's somewhat fun to play around
Occasionally you'll see a really awesome work of art
Market your Pins to Gen Z (see the tips below)
Cons of Using Shuffles Now:
No idea if it's here to stay
Way too many mood boards about Harry Styles
If you're not posting about Taylor Swift and Harry Styles, you won't gain instant popularity
There's no way to protect your intellectual property or to ensure you're not infringing on someone else's
4 Ways Brands Can Use Shuffles to Grow
Create Shuffles linked to Pins
Get discovered by a new generation of users by creati