The hype around Pinterest has been met with skepticism from PR practitioners, most of whom have sensibly adopted a wait-and-see attitude to the budding platform. However, since its launch two years ago, the image-sharing site has grown to become one of the biggest social networks in the world. Now that you no longer need an invitation to join, there are more reasons than ever to start using Pinterest for PR.
But first, a short explanation from Mashable’s excellent Pinterest Beginner’s Guide: “Pinterest is a place to organise and share online images that you find interesting or inspiring. Once uploaded or shared on Pinterest, these images become known as Pins, which the user [pinner] can place on customised, themed Boards.”
1. Pinterest’s Popularity is Growing
It was the fastest site in history to break the 10m monthly unique visitor mark (in the US).
It has overtaken LinkedIn and is catching up to the Big 3 social networks (Twitter, YouTube and Facebook).
It is the 41st most popular website in the world, ranked #50 in France, #32 in the UK and #28 in Spain.
2. Pinterest is a Great Source of Referral Traffic
3. Convert Links to Leads
HubSpot already receives a substantial number of visitors from Pinterest and is successfully converting those links into leads.
Pro tip: include landing pages in your pins’ descriptions so that click-throughs convert better.
4. Pinterest Users are Highly Engaged
The average Pinterest user spends more time on site than Facebook and Twitter users combined.
15% of pinners use no other social media sites.
Source: Compete via Marketing Profs
5. Target: A Desirable Demographic
Most Pinterest users are: women (80%) and young (63% are aged 18-44).
Source: Search Engine Watch
6. Target: A Specific Lifestyle
Pinterest users fall into three of Experian Hitwise’s Mosaic lifestyle segments:
• Boomers and Boomerangs – the baby boomer adults and the teenagers/young adults who live with them.
• Babies and Bliss – the parents of large families (with five or more in their houses), in their 30s and 40s, in full-time work and highly computer literate.
• Families Matter Most – young middle-class families with active lifestyles who are interested in things that allow them to juggle work and parenting effectively.
The most popular content categories on Pinterest focus on family life, home, food and products (% of users that interact with each):
• Food: 57%
• Home: 40%
• Arts and Crafts: 34%
• Style/Fashion: 30%
• Products: 26%
7. Target: Pinfluencers
Plenty of tools exist to help you find popular pins, boards and pinners, and to monitor your own Pinterest influence.
8. Use Pinterest as a Focus Group
[People are] volunteering a lot of information about their interests, passions, dreams and sense of humour in a more natural way on Pinterest than they would on say, a survey or even on Facebook… Use this information to your advantage to glean insights about your target consumers.
– Lauren Drell, Mashable
“If your company hosted an event recently, encourage people to pin and tag the photos as a sort of crowdsourced scrapbook.”
– Lauren Drell, Mashable
10. Communicate your/your Clients’ Corporate Culture
“Pinterest is the perfect avenue to illustrate a company’s culture by making a profile that highlights your brand’s personality… to ultimately connect deeper with consumers. Why not provide a pin for your thoughts? Use your page to publicise your thought leadership initiatives, by pinning images that showcase links to your articles, coverage or video content.”
– Elissa Davis, The Hit Board
Pinterest is currently dominated by US brands and marketeers, but some European PR agencies are getting it right.
Hill+Knowlton Strategies UK – Engagement!
The London agency’s crowdsourced “Community board” has attracted over 200 inspirational pins.
Publicis Activ RP – Proof!
France’s Publicis Activ puts client work front and centre, using Pinterest as a virtual portfolio.
Silvia Albert Inc – Personality!
Silivia Albert pin content about the Spanish agency and its clients, as well as inspirational quotes.
Social@Ogilvy -Thought leadership!
Ogilvy’s global social team pins only infographics produced by the agency and others, establishing their Pinterest page as a valuable resource.
Best Relations – Thinking visually!
Spain’s Best Relations strengthens its branding by producing and pinning bright orange content.