Successful Brands on Pinterest- An overview

by Raluca

This year I went to visit my parents for Easter and besides the egg-eating and Romanian sherry-drinking ceremonies in my family we also tried to brainstorm ideas on how to redesign the back yard. What better way to decide than with the help of beautiful images? This is how I got the idea of setting up a Pinterest account for my mum who is sort of the project manager for this initiative. A quick search of back yards and beautiful gardens led us to some great ideas for our project.
Pinterest is THE network on which users can communicate with each other via photos that are presented to them in an easy flow. Recent stats point at more than 70 billion users, 80% of whom are women. 750 million boards have been created  so far and 80% of the sharing activities areactually repins (for more updated stats, check out this link ). The platform’s rapid success resides in the simplicity of organizing pins (after all, their goal is “to connect everyone in the world through the things they find interesting”) and in the flow of visual content that is nicely displayed to the user.

We discussed earlier (quite a while back actually) this year how this is the time for brands to focus on visual content  The potential for businesses is huge and thanks to the visual component embedded in its DNA, Pinterest could be one of the “visual” platforms to focus on along with Tumblr, and Instagram. For more info on setting up your Pinterest business account, I recommend this short sample guide from Econsultancy.com

Go on Pinterest, then? Easier said than done. What type of content should your brand post on Pinterest, you may ask? Interestingly enough, this Blog post from Buffer shows (among other interesting stats) that men are interested in photography, art, design, and home décor on this platform. If you’re a producer of such goods, you may consider investing in Pinterest marketing. The most popular categories for women, on the other hand are: food/drinks, diy and home/décor.

To better understand how Pinterest can help you, here’s a quick look at what some of the most successful brands are doing on the platform:

  •  Better homes and Gardens

One of the most successful magazines in the US makes it easy for visitors of their website to follow them on Pinterest.  Their account has an impressive number of 632,365 followers and 10,550 pins so far.

bhg

BHG have created a great number of boards matching different interests from healthy recipes, gardens and pets to best tips and guest boards to which fans sometimes  ask to be added and therefore contribute to the popularity of those boards.

Sephora is another successful brand on Facebook with more than 293,000 followers and 6,755 pins.Besides expert advice on makeup presented in high quality images and product show cases, one of their most followed boards is Nailspotting. One take away from this board is the involvement of their community through the #Sephoranailspotting hashtag to which fans are invited to post their best tips for nail art (in a visual way, of course 🙂

sephora

If you’re a more technical brand, normally not endowed with the popularity glow of the FMCG category, worry not! In fact, technology brands have also caught up on this trend and they’re ready to rock your inner scientist on Pinterest. While these niche pages have a smaller number of followers, the communities created around them are quite engaged and….happy..

Here are two examples:

  • GE

GE prove that a great (visual) content strategy works wonders if you keep it simple and clever and their That’s genius board is  proof. Funny or inspirational science quotes in a high quality image is what makes GE stand out when expressing their ideas.

ge

Intel have placed their bets on  interesting cool-geek boards  that  showcase their minimalist-with-a-mad-scientist tinge visual assets. They have also created content for this specific platform striking it big with their Geek Chic showcases of fashionable gadgets. The board that reminds their fans of the company’s history  is quite  successful, while their Infographics home on Pinterest now has 8,021 followers.

If you have already embarked on your own  Pinterest journey, do share your best tips in the comments 🙂

until next time!

#MyHashtagHijack. A hashtag safety checklist

by Ioana Jelea

#LikeABoss. That’s a hashtag invented by my social media friends to describe situations in which one dared to push the limits of common sense/safety/polite manners&co and actually rise above a situation that would most probably have required some degree of embarrassment on the part of  its perpetrator.

Like all hashtags, it works as a label attached to some of the items published online and which helps us identify that item as belonging to a specific topic. It symbolically marks the creation of a venue of conversation – #whatever’sonyourmind hall – that aims to extract, from the permanent patchwork of Twitter conversations a stream that has its own logic. Pretty simple and clever, isn’t it?

That is, unless you get the hashtag hijack treatment that has turned many a social media soldier’s days to anguish-laden, insufferable hours of punishment speeding by at snail speed – oh, will this bitchin’ never end? ‘t’was just a conversation starter, dear Lord!

The recent #myNYPD incident  stands proof that hashtags are sensitive creatures of the social media universe that need to be tended to carefully before being sent out into the cruel, mad world of unfettered online conversations.

So, what to do so as to still drop it like it’s hot, but not get burnt in the process? A few things come to mind:

a)      Look for controversy. And when you’ve spotted it, try to figure out whether you have the resources to handle it. Do you have the court jester rocking your social media department? ‘cause then you’re all covered as it’s in his job description to be able to handle verbal duels and even win some.

The NYPD hijack should serve as a textbook example for this. It’s the police we’re talking about, not some kindergarten trying to boost its image. By definition, it’s a coercive force which will serve and protect some, while kicking others’ bums, to put it the dumbest possible way. Are you, then, willing to let the arrangement of the planets and the potentially good mood of your Twitter users dictate the direction of your Twitter campaign? Not really. To me, the #myNYPD move was a big, loud cry for a kick in the institution’s social media gut.

Then again, remember the “Shit product” coup against Zappos that bit Kanye in the rear end? All it took was a clever answer for the whole bubble to burst. Are the NYPD’s social media communication guidelines as permissive as that? My guess is that they’re not. Could, then, this controversy have been turned to their advantage? Unlikely. Could they have just said no to the impulse of playing it (too) cool? Definitely.

b)      Watch your spelling. A Mashable hashtag hijack wall of shame pointed out a hilarious example of what your oh, too clever! Twitter followers can do if you give them an A.N.A.L.B.U.M. No matter how you capitalize the hashtag, please take a look at all possible combinations that might result from it so your # does not get memorable for all the wrong reasons.

c)       Irony and Twitter glee/Live together in perfect har-mo-ny! They won’t mess with your hashtag. They’ll just attach it to whatever proves the opposite of what you’re trying to achieve. As proven by the Obamacare hijacks, this is what you might get when you’re fishing for compliments in murky waters.

obamacare

Or just….

obamacare2