Nov 30, 2012

Back to Basics: Pinterest

Foodies, brides to be, expecting mommies, puppy lovers, and DIY’ers need no introduction to this social media bulletin board. It took Pinterest no time to become a social media heavy hitter with high engagement and referral traffic. It was first launched as in invite-only platform in early 2010, and is now one of the largest social sharing sites along with one of the most downloaded apps among women. Brands can have branded accounts and can organize their pins on boards just like any other Pinner. Consumers interact with brands by following, repining, and liking pins.

Pinterest has a special place in the marketing and social media landscape. It’s much like your brand’s art gallery opening; it’s about the art not the advertising. Pinterest is a very personal (so personal they even have secret boards now) and creative space, and consumers do not want to be bombarded with promoted pins and ads. This is a great place to personify your brand – use it much like your consumers use it and they will follow. Brands should not just post pins that are self-glorifying. That does not mean that marketing tactics do not exist here. Smart marketers know to succeed on Pinterest you must disguise your marketing tactics behind a clever campaign with great giveaways. Peugeot Panama used Pinterest as a way to bring consumers to their Facebook and website to find the missing piece of a Pinterest puzzle they built as a campaign.

Brands should join Pinterest to aid in search and referral traffic marketing. It’s the perfect place for any brand that has a female audience or content that is sharable (pics, recipes, infographics, etc.). Plus, it’s low maintenance and easy to keep up with, the pins are not as timely as Facebook posts and Tweets - some of the many reasons why marketers love Pinterest. Another reason why social media marketers love this platform is because it allows your brand to be a part of your consumers everyday life in a non-invasive or salesy way. Brands can also learn a lot about their consumers here. Look at what your followers are pinning, if the majority of your followers are brides to be have a contest giving away a honeymoon trip. It’s a place where consumers and brands alike can share another side of their personality.

A few tips…

+ Organize your boards. Just like you “clean” your house before you have guests over, you want everything to be neat and easy to find. In addition to keeping them organized, keep them concise. Try to consolidate some of your boards to keep from having too many.

+ Be obvious. This does not mean boring. Using board names like “Swag” or “fun stuff” doesn’t really tell the users what it contains Don’t make them search through your boards to figure out what types of pins are in there (Macy’s does a great job at this). Just tell it like it is.

+ Optimize.  Be sure to write out descriptions of your pins and repins to help users find relevant content. Pinterest also utilizes hashtags, so use them!


The LEAP "Back to Basics" blog series takes social media back to step one. From discovering the "must haves" of Facebook to the ins and outs of Tumblr, each blog will focus on the essentials of the world's most loved (and sometimes, loathed) social networks. Not only will you learn where your brand should be, but why it should be there, and how to maximize your social influence.