Pinning down Pinterest

To ‘Pin it’ has taken on a new meaning in digital age. No longer a phrase limited to clothing alterations, it’s now ubiquitous online; giving users the opportunity to easily share content to their Pinterest. Like many other digital innovations, Pinterest has taken a real-life practice and translated it online. However, it is more than a virtual pinboard; it is a valuable platform for brands.

Unlike a physical pinboard, Pinterest has an added element of community. Think of it as a virtual public noticeboard – like one you might find down at the local shops. It has exposure to an engaged online community, particularly women who make up 85% of users. Without the limits of geography, digital communities tend to be stronger in shared interests, allowing niches to find a foothold.

But what does this mean for brands, particularly those looking to utilise user-generated content?

Pinterest is an asset for reputation building and growing brand identity. 96% of users report that they use Pinterest to research and gather information, while 87% said Pinterest engagement has helped them decide what to purchase. Potential customers have been shown to overwhelmingly trust reviews and insights from friends, family and peers when making purchase decisions. Unlike Instagram and other social media platforms it’s less about the person and about interests. Most notably 83% of active users prefer to follow a brand than to follow a notable celebrity, setting Pinterest apart as a space for connecting with active audiences.

Brands should remember that Pinterest is about more than just sharing products. It’s aspirational, about the idea behind a brand and finding ways to show users how the brand suits them. Simply, it has to fit on their pin board.

Here are IMPACT’s top tips for brands using Pinterest:

  1. Include hyperlinks but avoid overly branding images
  2. Share relevant content by users, particularly if they’ve posted a photo or idea using a product
  3. Run consumer competitions to drive engagement
  4. Pick your niche and stick to it. Rather than trying to be broad, focus in on one area to pin about
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