If your company isn’t using Pinterest, you may be missing out on a significant source of traffic. A lot of brands ignore the Pin-based digital hub, but as Pinterest pivots towards e-commerce and embraces new sponsorship options, it’s gaining a foothold as an essential channel for brands in all industries.
Anna-Lena Ludwig and Katharina Langbehn are Co-Founders of StudioStories. — a Creative Agency in the heart of Hamburg specializing in social media content creation.
They will lead an interactive session at Spark all about how to use Pinterest to grow your business, with a special emphasis on how to generate creative content that converts. We spoke with them to get their top tips on how brands can get started on Pinterest — and how “bad content” can end up costing more than good content.
Q: Pinterest is one of those platforms that really stumps a lot of marketers. Many brands feel like they have no natural place on Pinterest. Is that true? Do you think there are some industries that shouldn’t be on Pinterest? Or does it have something for everyone?
Pinterest is for everybody. There are some obvious big themes like DIY, Sports, Health, Food and Beauty, but there are also all kinds of niche products and services that easily find their audience on Pinterest. The most important thing is to integrate your product into relevant content and it will be found.
Q: You mention that Pinterest is a sustainable source of traffic. Do you find that high-performing content on Pinterest has a longer shelf life than other networks? Why is that?
Pinterest Pins are constantly generating traffic. That’s a big plus compared to Instagram, for example, where your post has a lifespan of a few seconds. On top of that, a Pinterest Pin has the potential of becoming a so-called Evergreen Pin, which can bring you traffic for even years after posting it.
Q: Your website states: “Good content costs money, bad content costs more.” Can you break that down for us? What’s the cost of bad content? How do you define “bad content?”
It happens a lot that people spend a big part of their budget on media and skimp on the content production. That’s a pity. You’ll never get the ROI you want if you’re relying on distribution over good content. Invest the money to produce good content and your output will make you and your audience happy, often for less money. That’s what we’re here for. By good content we mean content that matches the platform, demonstrates value, is aesthetically pleasing, and is otherwise “smart.”
Now, technology has changed everything. People have the ability choose what content they want to consume, and how they want to consume it, so naturally people are consuming content differently. We don’t sit in front of our TVs anymore. We use social media. We can actually have a two-way conversation with the brands we love, and we are more critical about what we consume.
And yet brands still focus on producing a TV spot. And after investing significant resources into that, they try to convert it into social media formats. That’s a big problem. If you start cutting up your TV spot, you’re creating sub-optimal content for each social platform. It should go the other way: you must first understand the audience and the platform, and then produce relevant content that speaks to them.
We advocate for producing bespoke content, designed for social media. Let’s not treat social like a stepchild. It’s 2019.
In the end, bad content not only costs you a lot of money, but can also cost you fans, potentially damaging your reputation and credibility.
Q: You’ve managed to get more than 40 million visits per month — how long did it take you to reach this number? That’s obviously much higher than a lot of even the biggest brands — what was your process for making that happen?
Without giving too much away, we will say that we’ve developed a strategy for making this happen. When we started our Pinterest business account 19 months ago, we used it to test our content and our strategies, so everything we advise is based on personal success.
Consistency is key: we are pinning on a daily basis. Also important is being part of the Pinterest creators community. We were invited by Pinterest Deutschland to join the community and be part of the Beta release for a number of newly developed features. As part of that project, our numbers tripled within two weeks to over 4 million viewers per month.
Since then we’ve had consistent growth, until today when we have 40 million viewers per month.
There are a lot of big brands on Pinterest who haven’t been able to reach those numbers: Coca Cola has about 75k, Audi 86k, McDonalds 2.5 million, Starbucks 3.1 million, and so on. Nike, H&M, Disney, and IKEA are leaders with over 10 million monthly viewers.
Just for a point of reference, our best performing pin so far had about 850k impressions — that is significant. Our talk at Spark will be about how you can also reach those numbers by creating relevant content, following a strategy, and optimizing your timing. The best part? You don’t need a media budget.
Q: What advice do you have for creative professionals on a budget? How can people achieve that high-quality, on-brand visual content without breaking the bank?
Using Pinterest successfully you need to focus on constructive content. You need to understand your audience and be there to fulfil their needs. If you set up a good strategy, you’ll produce visually appealing and relevant content. You don’t need a media budget on Pinterest, just focus on creativity and good planning. We will provide a step-by-step plan how to do so in our session at Spark, so don’t miss out ;-)