While you were busy pinning pictures of cookie recipes and fruity cocktails, Pinterest quietly turned 3 years old and began maturing into a real business-driving platform.

Pinterest Users Are Spending $$$

Did you know that Sophora’s Pinterest followers spend 15 times more money than its Facebook fans? Julie Bornstein, head of digital at Sephora said, “The reality is that when you’re in the Pinterest mindset, you’re actually interested in acquiring items.” Bornstein went on to say, “E-commerce really is still in the first innings of really leveraging the power of social, but we’ve experimented a lot with social shopping and this [Pinterest] is the first one that has really gotten to scale.” According to research by firm, Rich Relevance, the average order value (AOV) from Pinterest shoppers is $140-180 while Facebook shoppers tend to spend $80 on average and Twitter shoppers spend about $60 on average. All of these numbers seem to suggest Pinterest is the hot network to be on if you’re a retail brand.  

Some (More) Pinteresting Stats

If you’re still not convinced that your brand should be on Pinterest, let’s consider some more stats:
  • Pinterest has over 48 million users.
  • Average time spend on site is over 14 minutes.
  • Pinterest pins with prices get 36% more likes than those without.
  • 9% of users have participated in a contest or promotion on Pinterest.
  • 43% of users on Pinterest are happy to associate with retailers or brands on the network.
When it comes down to pinpointing (some pun intended!) a target audience, the breakdown looks like this:

Social Networking Target Demographics

White women, under 50, with some college experience under their belts are pinning away (and spending money). For many retail brands, that’s an ideal demographic to go after.  

5 Ways Your Brand Can Use Pinterest

1. Pin Your Products

This is the most obvious one: pin photos of your products. The photos don’t need to be professional, but they should be relatively high quality (no dark, blurry photos please!). You can go about pinning your products in two ways. You can create a board specifically to promote your product. For example you might create a board dedicated to a new, seasonal line. Zoya Spring 2013 Collection on Pinterest Alternatively (or in addition to a product-specific board) you could mix in pins of your product into a board about a particular topic.

Zoya 4th of July Pinterest board

2. Share Your Company Culture

Shoppers love to feel like they’re getting an inside look into where their favorite products are made. You probably already share some fun ‘insider’ photos on Facebook and Instagram, but why not create a board on Pinterest as well? Allow all of your employees to post to the Company Culture Pinterest board and soon it will be loaded up with fun photos from around the office like this Birchbox board that they call The Beauty Diaries:

Birchbox Beauty Diaries Pinterest Board

3. Host a Contest

Almost 10% of all Pinterest users have participated in a contest on the fun social network, but I bet that number would be even higher if more brands were hosting contests. Here’s an example of a contest, Zoya, a luxury nail polish company put on:

Zoya Pinterest Contest

They created a board with a selection of different nail polish colors. The three colors that got the most repins were put into a “mini” collection (read: sample size bottles) and were given away for free (shipping not included) to Pinterest users. You don’t need to give away your product to hundreds or thousands of users to host a Pinterest contest though. You could simply say that everyone who repins a certain picture or set of pictures will be entered to win a Grand Prize.

4. Provide Tips / Advice

You know your product better than your customers – why not share the information? Pinterest is a great place to promote tutorials, guides and short advice. If you have a lot to share, you could create a whole board dedicated to helping your customers get the most out of your products!

Sephora Pro Tips Pinterest Board

5. Promote Partnerships

Are you running a promotion with a partner brand? If so, share it on Pinterest! Both your brand, your partners brand and the promotion will receive extra exposure!

BIrchbox Brand Partnership BOard

Aside from the above five tips, there are lots of other ways you can use Pinterest as a sales and marketing tool. When thinking of ways to engage your audience on Pinterest there’s no reason you shouldn’t experiment a lot to see what works for you!

Your Thoughts

Is your company currently using Pinterest? If not, why haven’t you? If so, what has worked/hasn’t worked for you? Let us know in the comments below!]]>

TJ has worked in the digital marketing space since 2006. He has worked at a number of agencies and and helped hundreds of clients grow their business through SEO, PPC, Social Media and Content Marketing. He currently lives in Lehi , UT and enjoys spending time with his family.