Mar 2, 2012
I’m sure you’ve heard it, you might have even seen it- those gorgeous photos on themed boards which fuel the urge in you to suddenly desire to purchase everything which you have “liked” or “repined.” If you have not already guessed (or seen the title screaming at you), the topic for this entry will revolve around Pinterest, the niche social network which has caught the eye of marketers in the digital platform.
Pinterest, as the title suggests, is a pinboard-styled photo sharing social website, allowing users to create specific themed boards and adding or repining images from other sources in different boards. To register and use Pinterest, new users are required to request an invitation directly from the Pinterest website or from friends who are already on Pinterest. Here’s an example of a brand on Pinterest; Travel Channel with 24 boards (categorized according to beaches, animals around the world etc.) and 483 pins (images).
To date, Pinterest has garnered 2,702.2% increase in unique visitors since May 2011, with an average of 1.36 million visitors daily. In addition, users spend an average of 15.8 minutes on the website, exceeding that of popular social network platforms like Facebook and Twitter.
You must be thinking, so what’s so special about Pinterest and how can it help my business? Isn’t it just another social network platform for sharing of photos similar to the likes of tumblr, instagram and flickr? Well, you are right, and wrong. Although Pinterest is indeed a platform for users to pin and repin photos to themed boards, marketers have started to colonize this to their advantage, adding an emotive appeal to their brand.
Showcasing brand personality through visuals
“A picture is worth a thousand words.” With Pinterest, brands can now convey their brand message and value propositions through a great array of images. Without a doubt, many brands would have already invested extensively in professional photography to promote their products. They can now leverage on this platform to further increase their engagement as an interesting, personable, visually appealing brand when customers are given the leeway to repin photos which they can associate themselves with. In addition, brands such as General Electric (GE) have been using Pinterest to pin images which inspire them as a business. Boards such as “The Archives” reveal GE’s progress and success through the years while “That’s Genius” showcases founder’s Thomas Edison’s words of wisdom. To increase consumer engagement, GE dedicated “#GEInspiredMe” to a series of well-taken photographs submitted during GE’s search for the next Instagrapher.
Consumer engagement is brought to a whole new level when brands adopt the crowdsourcing strategy on Pinterest. By categorizing photos into various themed boards, brands like west elm and TODAY are able to provide a platform for their consumers to upload relevant photos and tag them. “TODAY’s Life Illustrated” highlights viewers’ precious moments in life while west elm’s “Smilebooth!” gives a shout out to fans and potential consumers that current fans really like the brand. Through crowdsourcing, viral marketing is effective in building brand loyalty and forging new relationships with new customers.
Users who browse the brand’s pinboards will be able to repin the photos on their pinboard. This is particularly useful for brands with online store so that traffic can be channelled to their website. Nordstrom is well aware of this feature and is leveraging on this to their advantage. Users can share their interest for particular products with like-minded people on Pinterest. For more information, users will be able to click on the particular image and they will be then directed to the original source that is the brand’s website.
Apart from a business perspective, Pinterest is gaining a foothold in other aspects as well. Top areas of interest include quotes and inspirations, infographics, recipes, fashion, places, interior design, animal adoption. Videos can even be pinned as a value-add! Do check out Marketing Businesses on Pinterest and Top Brands on Pinterest to find out more.
Go on, enter the beautiful world of Pinterest and start pinning!