Pinterest Lessons From a Mom-Focused Brand
For a site that began less than three years ago, Pinterest has quickly changed the way people - specifically women - use the internet. With millions of visitors every month, many consumers make Pinterest part of their daily routine, but brands are doing the same. About a year ago, Punchbowl began its foray into the social network by curating content and building boards specifically for women and moms who plan parties. After a year, we’re taking a step back to share our strategy, and the successes and challenges we’ve had with Pinterest.
From the beginning, we established clear goals for what we wanted to achieve from Pinterest, which included driving traffic to Punchbowl.com, reinforcing our brand as one that inspires people to celebrate, and to build a following for our new eCommerce business.
The marketing team started by posting Punchbowl’s unique content in the Party Ideas section for pins that would link back to the Punchbowl site. They started by posting 10 new pins each week and currently post about 20-30 pins a week. Each board is dedicated to specific seasonal celebrations, party themes and other trending party planning topics to give the pins a relevance for users. All pins contain keyword-rich descriptions that appeal to moms but also make the content more searchable.
We knew from the start that our Pinterest presence must be personal and diverse, not corporate. As a result, 25% of pins come from Punchbowl.com and 75% of pins come from blogs produced by our core demographic - tech-savvy, modern moms.
Our boards contain a mix of pins from other sources - blogs, articles, etc - and cards or invitations from Punchbowl.com.
To build our Pinterest following and encourage sharing of our content, Punchbowl added “Pin It” buttons throughout the site and “Follow Us” links in all email marketing. These are simple ways to build your credibility as a creative, active Pinterest user.
As with every new marketing strategy, we encountered various challenges and successes. Here’s how ours stack up:
- Avoiding the time suck - It’s OK to admit you spend hours and hours on Pinterest - we’re guilty! As a company, it’s just one part of the overall social media strategy. It is a daily challenge to find the right balance between doing too much and doing too little.
- Connecting Social to ROI - We are still learning how to harness the power of Pinterest to a tangible eCommerce advantage. We've seen some success, but we know there's a lot more we can do.
- Powerful, visual presence - Punchbowl has established a Pinterest page that shows exactly who we are as a brand. There is a blend of beautiful, aspirational images and practical, achievable ideas that people like and repin every single day.
- Referral traffic - We've seen significant growth in traffic to Punchbowl.com via Pinterest and much of the traffic is organic.
- Hands down, the biggest key to success on Pinterest is creating a marriage between the imagery you choose and relevant, well-written content. Sometimes people pin something because they are inspired by the image. Sometimes they pin something because they're interested in the content. We are most successful when we combine those two elements -- a great image paired with a great article.
- As with most marketing efforts, you have to think like the customer. Spending time on Pinterest thinking like a user instead of a brand will allow you to recognize opportunities. For example, we wrote this article especially for Pinterest, and it has been pinned over 158,000 times. People were repinning our articles that included cocktail recipes and we saw an increase in patriotic crafts, ideas, and recipes in the early summer as people were starting to think about 4th of July. Those two trends came together in this one article and as soon as we pinned it, it went viral.
Given Pinterest’s obvious staying power, it’s safe to say that Punchbowl will continue to “pin” and reap the aggregate rewards from increased brand awareness and traffic to the site, but we still have learning to do around the ROI of Pinterest. To learn more about Pinterest and its deep relationship with moms, check out our white paper, “How Pinterest is Changing Purchase Behavior of Moms Who Plan Celebrations.”
Posted by Jessica Noble