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Here’s The No. 1 Reason Why Brands Are Winning On Pinterest

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At Social Media Week Chicago, Creative Strategist Jason Wire shared the five best practices that brands on Pinterest can’t live without.

With its 200 million monthly active users, Pinterest might not have the reach of other social platforms—but the company does have a secret weapon when it comes to attracting advertiser dollars. So, why are marketers flocking to Pinterest in droves? You can credit the platform’s ability to create an ecosystem wherein brands are welcome participants.

Jason Wire, a Creative Strategist at Pinterest, explained this model at Social Media Week Chicago. In his talk, he explored how Pinterest’s product is designed to “give people what they don’t know they want,” thereby helping brands play an active role in taking people from ideas to action.

The unbranded opportunity

Wire shared that a whopping 97 percent of Pinterest searches are unbranded, which uncovers a huge whitespace for brands vying to influence consideration at the early stages of consumer interest. As people search for home decor ideas, outfit suggestions, and makeup tips, they are open to exploring content from brands with authority in these spaces.

In this sense, Pinterest has carved out a unique niche wherein marketers can capture attention at critical moments of the consumer consideration phase. As brands find creative ways to align their products to inspirational moments (ideas-based vs. product-based), they will have more success on the platform and drive consumers to an act in a way that benefits the bottom line.

How brands can drive action in Pinterest

Building on this piece, Wire reiterated that the role of the brand on Pinterest is to provide relevant and unique ideas; it’s not about repurposing basic product ads in the hopes that consumers will make the connection between the product and what they happen to be looking for. Of course, making this distinction requires a bit of creativity, which is where Wire and specialists like him within Pinterest’s Studio fit in.

In fact, Wire shared that 75 percent of the ideas shared on Pinterest originate from brands. “You have a unique opportunity to not be disruptive, but additive to somebody’s experience,” he said. He continued by emphasizing that although at the surface-level people are searching for what to cook, how to decorate, and where to travel, they are essentially looking for guidance on what to buy.Use this to your advantage.

Wire’s five best practices for brands on Pinterest

Distilling his expertise into five key takeaways for brands, Wire shared the following takeaways:

  1. Show up early: On Pinterest, people begin planning early. While holiday pins are searched the most in mid-November, research shows that people begin planning as early as June. It’s important to have your brands content online that early because studies have also shown that consumers often purchase from brands that had the first impression.
  2. Stay relevant: Relevance can mean directly aligning with topics and searches that make sense for your brand (e.g. a hair product sharing pins around easy to replicate updos) or it could mean finding a creative way into an existing conversation. An example of this concept in action is Cheetos, which asked people to upload photos if their snack resembled an object. This helped Cheetos position against popular topics like “thigh-high boots” in a humorous and engaging way.
  3. Have the look: Pinterest is, first and foremost, a visual search tool. Invest the time and resources into creating captivating content and you will increase your odds of discovery.
  4. Inspire and educate: Pinterest is not the place for cookie cutter ads. Your pin should promote your product, but should also do so in a way that adds value to the users’ life in one way or another. Make it about them; not you.
  5. Drive action: Consider what you want users to do upon seeing your content and remind them of your product’s role in their life.

Pinterest continues to build out its product, helping users turn digital search queries into actions IRL. In fact, the platform recently debuted Pin Codes, which allow brands and retailers to link inspirational tips directly to their products.

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