I admit it. In the beginning, when I was a beta-tester on Pinterest, I completely "dropped the ball" and failed to see the marketing potential that site offered. Perhaps, I was too mesmerized by the abundance of all things wonderful presented in an endless visual array. Or, perhaps, I was already feeling overwhelmed by social media in my first year online to consider exploring the site further. Just more than one year ago, though, I returned to the site with fresh eyes and began to understand why Pinterest has become a key channel for businesses.
I became an enthusiastic Pinner again, because I realized the target markets for my Etsy business were active Pinterest users. That is a fundamental motivation for any business use of a social network (Charleston, 2016). My own mostly female, Millennial or older, and low middle to upper middle income demographic was well-represented on the site. Many more market segments are well-represented on Pinterest and it is worth the effort for marketers to explore. And, certain "fun facts" about Pinterest may surprise any marketer. For example, Millennials use Pinterest as much as Instagram. And, two-thirds of all pins represent brands and products. Every day 2 million people pin product-rich pins. Considering those pinned products, 87% of users have purchased a pinned product, 72% use Pinterest to make decisions about purchases, and 92% plan purchases using their pins (Aslam, 2017). In other words, consumers create beautiful boards that they use to guide their consumer behavior. Pinterest is a marketer's dream come true.
I used Pinterest as a personal account until I had more than 10,000 followers. For some reason, unknown even to myself, I thought that would help me understand what my followers liked best. Don't make the same mistake. Use Pinterest as a business account from the beginning. Pinning your own content will automatically create "rich pins" with eye-catching information about your product. But, more importantly than that, Pinterest Analytics for business accounts will help take all of the guesswork out of understanding your followers' interests. Insights, providing data on consumer preferences based on pinning behavior, combined with the demographic details about the audience can be used to guide business strategy to generate more engagement that is measured in impressions, clicks, and saves (Pinterest, 2017). Pinterest organizes information to help businesses make wise decisions and also provides tools to collect more data from content. In addition to organic engagement, well-performing pins can be promoted with paid ads to increase reach.
Unlike tweets, or most other social media posts, pins are forever. Users curate them on their boards and they are discovered and repinned by other users, which keeps content in perpetual circulation. The main job for the marketer becomes creating irresistible pins with content targeted precisely using information from Pinterest Analytics. I may have returned to Pinterest with fresh eyes, but those eyes are now wide open. Within that beautiful array of all things wonderful lies unique opportunities for business and all of the tools to achieve success on Pinterest.