July 3, 2012

How Brands (Even Manly Ones) Use Pinterest to Increase Leads & Sales


photo courtesy

by Jaimie Siegle | Advertising Systems Inc.

Since I wrote about the Pinterest phenomenon in February, the photo-centric social network has only continued to gain popularity for users, marketers, and businesses alike.

The California-based “startup” has gained more than 19 million followers in the last year and is the third most popular social network behind Facebook and Twitter, according to a recent article by Aaron Pragnell. Since racking up more than $100 million in funding in May 2012, Pinterest has been valued at $1.5 billion.

For small businesses, the most important part of Pinterest is its ability to drive sales and generate leads. Although roughly 60 to 70 percent of the site’s visitors are female, more “masculine” retail companies, such as power tool manufacturer Positec, are getting creative to make the most of their Pinterest presence.

In a recent Forbes story, blogger Alex Knapp discusses how Positec has made money through the popular social network:

“…Sharing on Pinterest has become lucrative for the company. Even though traffic from Pinterest only accounts for about 10% of the company’s social media traffic, it’s by far the most valuable in terms of generating sales. For example, the average value of a Facebook user is about $64 in sales. For Pinterest? $129 per user.”

Positec’s pinboards range from gift guides to zombie guides, and the company’s global content director said it is shifting its sales efforts from Facebook to Pinterest. The reason? Facebook is more of a “customer service” tool, whereas Pinterest is a “lead generation” tool.

People who use Pinterest like to shop and are, essentially, looking for things to buy. It’s the responsibility of the brand to not only display their products or services in a creative, visual way; it’s also the brand’s duty to interact with users, and allow them to more easily promote the brand. Positec, for example, has added a “Pin It” button to its brands’ websites.

Are you on Pinterest? If you have questions about using this social network, let us know about them in the comments.

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