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Is Pinterest Right For Your Brand?

Is Pinterest Right For Your Brand?

Pinterst iconHi, my name is Angela, and I am a Pinterest addict. This week I’ve discovered I could write entire volumes about Pinterest and marketing, but I’ve managed to edit my masterpiece into a series of 3 blog posts-

Check back tomorrow and Friday if you like goals or hate feeling peevish. Can you guess what we’re going to talk about today? Before we sample the topic du jour…

What’s So Cool About Pinterest Anyway?
If you’ve been doing your marketing homework lately, you’ve probably heard of Pinterest.  Blogs like TechCrunch are abuzz with the news that Pinterest is growing exponentially, hitting the 10 million unique monthly visitor milestone faster than any other independent site ever. According to Shareaholic, Pinterest drives more referral traffic than Google Plus, LinkedIn and YouTube combined.

Not only that, but using Pinterest can also improve your SEO since you’ll have all those lovely links directing back to your site.

So basically, the new wunderkind of social media already drives more quality referral traffic than some of the big players, it’s great for SEO, and it’s STILL GROWING. Actually, it’s still in beta.

Joining Pinterest ASAP seems like a no-brainer for marketers, doesn’t it? But before you jump on the bandwagon and request an invite, let’s take a minute to think this through. Is Pinterest right for you and your brand? Not all social media platforms are created equally and in many cases a poorly executed Pinterest campaign is worse than no Pinterest presence at all.

So Is Pinterest Right for My Brand?
I thought you’d never ask. I’ve created this handy dandy flow chart to aid your decision making process.

Is Pinterest right for your brand flow chart

Let’s walk through it together.

1. Who is your target demographic?
Did you say women under 60? Good. I don’t mean to sound sexist, but Pinterest is a pretty girly place.  Hard numbers vary depending on who is reporting them but everyone seems to agree that up to 70% of its user base is female, and those women are somewhere between the ages of 18-54. In the magical land of Pinterest, cupcakes, babies, fashion, and wedding photos abound. That’s not to say there isn’t a place for men on Pinterest; Mashable is doing a good job at building a gender neutral presence and Blue Glass’s Bro’s Guide to Pinterest is a compelling read if you’re determined to carve out a niche for your manly brand. But if you’re looking for an instant ROI, and you’re in the market for the lowest hanging fruit, you’ll get more out of Pinterest if your core demographic is ladies under the age of 60.

2. Do you like pretty, pretty pictures?
Unlike Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ and many other social networking sites, where photos are a plus, but not a necessity, Pinterest is all about eye-catching photos. It is a visual medium. In fact, the Pinterest platform will not even let you create a pin without a large image or a video.  No matter how witty you are, your clever text heavy messages aren’t going to cut it here.

3. What does Lifestyle Marketing mean to you?
We’ve confirmed that you have gorgeous photos; do you also have the content to back them up? Think about it a minute. Doesn’t it make sense that you need something interesting to link to if you’re looking for all the quality traffic and conversions the pro-Pinterest social media mavens have been promising? You can link to products, tutorials, educational content, blog posts…the possibilities are limitless, but you have to link somewhere.

4. Is it all about you?
This might sound harsh, but Pinterest users just aren’t that into you. Pinterest users are primarily looking for inspiration. They don’t care if you ate donuts for breakfast, unless you photograph them in natural light with a soft focus lens and provide a link to the recipe.  If you get your sense of accomplishment from tallying up your fans, followers, and new friends, stick with Twitter or Facebook and skip Pinterest.

Don’t feel too bad if all signs didn’t point to yes.  It’s not that hard to add photos or create content now if you are determined to join Pinterest sooner or later.  And like I said earlier, some brands are marketing to men through Pinterest, it’s not impossible, it’s just a little trickier. All I’m saying is you might want to make some improvements to your site or strategize a bit before you dive into the deep end.

If you did pass the test, we’ve determined you and Pinterest are a match made in heaven. Congratulations. Before you take the plunge, I want to talk about your marketing goals. Let’s meet here tomorrow- same time, same place?

If you already have marketing goals in place for your Pinterest campaigns, check out these “Tips for Using Pinterest for Marketing”.