What’s So Interesting About Pinterest?
When it comes to marketing a business using social media, Facebook and Twitter often get the most focus since they have so many users. Yet, there’s a platform that offers more specific targeting and maximizes the use of images – Pinterest. With exponentially growing user-ship, it’s not just for sharing recipes anymore; there are many ways to leverage it for business use. If your business is very visually-oriented, i.e., a retailer, restaurant, or travel service, and you have great photos, Pinterest can be highly effective – and fun to delve into.
What is Pinterest?
Pinterest allows users to collect and file images they find on the internet into areas of interest, or “boards”. Then others can see your boards, and re-pin images, thus starting the viral effect. When you see an image on any website, you simply “pin it” (pinning function automatically becomes available when the user creates an account). Pinterest can be either an extremely good time investment or a very wasteful one, so it’s important to know what it can offer your business and what using it well require. Here are basic pros and cons to know if Pinterest is a smart choice.
The Pros of Pinterest
- A Higher Conversion Rate – Most people who have used or researched Pinterest will tell you that people on it are more likely to pull out their wallet and purchase than those on Facebook and Twitter, despite having fewer users. People are also willing to spend more, with referred Pinterest users on average spending $140 to $180, as opposed to referred Facebook users spending an average of $60 to $80. This is likely due to a combination of Pinterest being the most popular image-sharing platform, having direct site links from images, and other factors still being scrutinized.
- Allows for a Greater Varieties of Engagement – Pinterest’s style of long, portrait-oriented images makes it very popular for unique kinds of engaging content. Some well-known ones include recipes, how-to’s, fashion and home decoration ideas, and others popular with its predominantly female audience. Pinterest’s ability to post pins of virtually limitless height make it much easier to use images to engage visitors with information and walkthroughs, which makes for excellent content marketing. Other platforms are more limited in their height to width ratios of images (especially Instagram, which only allows a simple 1:1 ratio).
- Selective Following – One simple aspect of Pinterest is your profile’s images aren’t all grouped together, they’re part of separate boards, categorized as you see fit, and people can follow as many boards as they like. This “selective following” means that a wide variety of boards makes it easier to appeal to more people without appearing unfocused in the content you share. As long as the content on each board is strong, businesses can make many varied boards to stretch their brand reach.
The Cons of Pinterest
- Heavy Image Requirements – As you’d expect from the most popular image-sharing social media site, running an effective Pinterest profile requires plenty of high-quality, high-resolution images. While most other social media sites emphasize landscape proportions, Pinterest is portrait-focused, which means organizations need to spend more time to tailor their content for a Pinterest audience. Pinterest also requires much more sharing, ranging from 5 to 10 (or even 20) pins a day that are either uploaded or repinned. This can make Pinterest a heavy time and content investment.
- Scheduling Limits – As this blog post is being posted, there is no free, straightforward dashboard or manager for businesses to manage their Pinterest account with basic scheduling and tracking (some go far beyond what a business needs and can be pricey). Free options include ViralWoot, which allows scheduling a good amount of pins and gathering followers, and Tailwind, which has a free version offering good analytic measures. Finding a Pinterest profile manager that meets your business’s exact needs may be challenging, you’ll have to adapt to work with what is available.
- Narrower Demographic and Topic Appeal – Pinterest is used primarily by women. The most popular Pinterest topics are about fashion, home decor, cooking, and lifestyle. Unless your business is already focused on these areas, finding a potential audience in Pinterest can be extremely difficult and take a lot of creativity. So make sure that what’s already on Pinterest can fit into your brand, before you invest in the platform and realize it just doesn’t fit with your work.
How does Pinterest Compare to Instagram?
Ask an Expert: What’s the Difference between Pinterest, Instagram, and Snapchat for Marketers?