Should Your Brand Be On Pinterest?
With the amount of conversation across the web about Pinterest in the last couple of months, you would almost think that there is no better place for brands to be going for social engagement. With the platform seeing impressive monthly growth rates (2 million to 4 million daily unique visits between January and March) and with some research suggesting referral traffic from Pinterest is higher than Google+, YouTube, and LinkedIn combined now is as good a time as any to consider it for inclusion in a social media strategy.
The most important point is to define exactly the value you want Pinterest to bring to your brand, a complex question because of the different ways we attribute value in social. However, asking yourself the following questions should help make things more clear.
Is Pinterest the Right Platform for Your Brand?
It’s often the case that when a new social media platform comes along one might be tempted to hop in based purely on the perception that ‘this must be good if it is getting this much press coverage’, or ‘if we aren’t there, our competitors will be’. There is nothing really wrong with this attitude; new platforms will undoubtedly open up new potential avenues for engagement with your consumers, and it would be foolish to outright disregard them all.
But to ascertain the value of Pinterest to your brand, it is important to understand how your current audience uses Pinterest.
- How your competitors are using Pinterest? Is their presence effective in driving user engagement like re-pins, comments, and content creation on public boards. Is there a space on the platform for your brand to occupy?
- How could Pinterest serve a unique offering in your social media strategy? Could your Facebook page serve purely as a promotional outlet of your products whilst Pinterest is a creative platform for fan engagement?
- Could you use analytics to see how much traffic is being driven to your site at the moment from Pinterest, and compare it with the key social media sites Facebook and Twitter, or any others whose worth to your brand has been proven?
As with any social media platform, you first must to quantify if there is the time and internal resources available for you to be adding one more social media platform to the mix of time intensive platforms you are already managing. As we would tell any of our clients, social media cannot be placed in a separate space to your overall marketing strategy, is must fall in the remit of your display, PR and overall business framework to be effective. To this point, there is a need to allocate the time and resource necessary to test and optimise your development onto new avenues.
The key to answering whether is it time to create a new online presence is an understanding how much measurable value you are going to get from this platform, can you compare the interactions on Pinterest to the interactions on Facebook. Most importantly by diving into this new platform, are you taking valuable resources away from the platform you are already managing with a dedicated following?
The ‘How’: Creating a Connection
Studying what brands are currently doing on Pinterest, the most successful have attempted to integrate the most popular types of content uploaded onto Pinterest to capture a larger audience. Take ModCloth as an example: this is a brand which could very easily take an approach focused on driving sales due to the nature of their business, however they still appeal mainly to the broad interest ranges of their customers. These include the obvious; fashion, but also food, technology, films, music. Ultimately, it creates a breeding ground for users to share content with people they know will be engaged and actively appreciate that content.
The reason for this is that, as it stands, Pinterest is not being used to drive direct sales, but rather for leveraging your brand advocates. Brands have done this effectively by appealing to users’ interests that are indirectly related to the brand, in turn creating a more emotive link with a brand’s values. This allows them to relate back to their key audiences in a meaningful way. Understanding if you have built that existing link between your brand and emotive values however is a key driver as to whether Pinterest is the right platform for you.
Quick wins: Create, Test, Optimise, Repeat
- Create a variety of boards, not only for your brand to add to, but also for your fans to populate
- Use effective keywords so that fans know what the board is about. Give them a head start by posting content to these boards which they can they populate themselves with relevant content
- Link your fans to your Pinterest page from your website and other social pages.
- Engage with your fans and other brands by re-pinning, commenting on their pins and following their boards.
Still don’t know whether Pinterest is the right platform for your brand? Let us know in the comments section and we will get back to you.
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