Can retailers inspire greater sales using Pinterest?

Discussion
Source: Adore Me/Pinterest
Oct 19, 2016

Klaudia Tirico

Through a special arrangement, presented here for discussion is a summary of a current article from the Retail TouchPoints website.

Pinterest Founder and CEO Ben Silbermann often protests that Pinterest is not a social media platform. Instead, it’s a “catalog of ideas.”

Personally, I use Pinterest as a virtual inspiration board that stores ideas along with easily accessible shopping lists, rather than to “socialize” with friends and followers.

It seems as though I am not alone. A 2015 Bizrate Insights survey showed that 70 percent of consumers said they use Pinterest to “get inspiration on what to buy.”

For more inspiration, here are some unique Pinterest marketing tactics used by retailers:

  • Sell stuff: To reach new customers and boost sales, retailers such as FlyAway BlueJay are using Buyable Pins, which enable customers to buy an item they see on the platform without leaving the page. FlyAway BlueJay claims 100 percent of Buyable Pins sales came from new customers. Additionally, during the 2015 holiday season, FlyAway BlueJay found that Pinterest drove 20 percent of its overall sales and 28 percent of overall web site traffic.
  • Advertise: With help from advertising platform 4C, Adore Me was able to increase its Pinterest revenue by a whopping 4000 percent by utilizing Promoted Pins, which allows businesses to choose specific pins as a means of advertising. These Promoted Pins are then distributed throughout the most relevant areas of a user’s feed. The monthly subscription service for lingerie also realized a 50 percent higher click-to-purchase rate with Promoted Pins compared to other channels.
  • Bring the Pinterest experience to brick-and-mortar: An early Pinterest adopter, Nordstrom, placed “Top Pinned” signs on merchandise such as women’s shoes and handbags inside its stores. An internal iPad app enabled salespeople to view the pins and match the items in the photos to showcase trending items to customers.
  • Showcase your brand’s history: In August 2016, Ann Taylor created a Pinterest board to show followers images of the brand’s retro looks. Scattered images of new products were shown within the retro images, so users could shop the collection based on the classics.

 

  • Pinterest: The Not-So-Social Network That Generates Big Benefits – Retail TouchPoints

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Do you see Pinterest’s value as more of a marketing or purchasing tool? How great a role will Pinterest and other such social platforms play in driving social commerce in the years to come?

Braintrust
"We are seeing retailers focus more on the creative aspects of a purchase because uniqueness sells."
"Pinterest may continue to grow, however retailers need to stay close to these trends and be agile enough to switch/add social channels as needed."

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5 Comments on "Can retailers inspire greater sales using Pinterest?"

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Jasmine Glasheen
Guest
Jasmine Glasheen
10 months 13 hours ago

Not only is Pinterest a treasure hunt, but it sparks creativity and gets customers excited about products. It’s a place for ideas and identification.

We are seeing retailers focus more on the creative aspects of a purchase because uniqueness sells. Pinterest allows users to discover their unique style and then purchase items suited to it — making them their own personal shopper. Plus, making customers think a purchase is their idea is marketing 101.

The takeaway from this is that not only is Pinterest a social sharing platform, but it allows customers to discover their individual style. “Buy” buttons on Pinterest are essentially selling customers themselves, which is smart branding.

Ben Ball
BrainTrust

WARNING. Personal (and painful) story to follow.

I was invited to attend a client’s strategic planning session a few years back. Advisors from other fields also attended — including their e-commerce agency. Part of their presentation addressed a (then) somewhat new platform called Pinterest. From the sidelines I remarked “Pinterest sucks.”

The agency presenter looked at me and said “excuse me?”

I repeated, “Pinterest sucks.”

“Well!” she replied “Perhaps if you are a Boomer male — but not if you are a Millennial!”

“It has already cost me one remodeled bathroom and I’m staring at a kitchen remodel next month thanks to that site,” I replied. “Pinterest sucks!”

Effective? Absolutely!

Ralph Jacobson
BrainTrust

Pinterest IS a social channel and it has all the value to retailers (and CPG brands) that any popular social channel has. Its format definitely lends itself to being a great marketing tool, and folks of all ages are getting more comfortable using it, not just Millennials.

As we have already seen with other social platforms, public interest and usage will wane for most channels over time and new ones will emerge as popular (Anyone remember MySpace?). Pinterest may continue to grow, however retailers need to stay close to these trends and be agile enough to switch/add social channels as needed.

Shilpa Rao
BrainTrust

I love Pinterest and often catch onto trends that make my style board, creative boards and then I’ll shop online for the same. Buyable pins are useful, but I seldom buy from them. Additional features such as search for these items at a Target or Macy’s or even Micheals would really help to enhance my experience.

Manish Chowdhary
BrainTrust

Thanks for the interesting post and discussion. There’s another good reason to love Pinterest. Pinners.

The reason why we can (1) Sell; (2) Advertise; and (3) Entice customers back to the store is because there are over 175mm monthly active users to whom we can… sell, advertise, and lure into our brick & mortar stores.

The question of whether to include Pinterest in your customer experience mix — browsing, shopping, buying, owning — is long past. The retailers who are behind should catch up fast — lest they lose their fair share of Pinterest engagement and sales.

Working with mid-sized retailers, we’ve found that they know they need to be there, and grapple with “how.” One of them shared his learnings in this webinar about how to market and sell on Pinterest.

Pinterest has its own SEO, so to speak. How do you optimize your Pin content? What are the most effective marketing techniques? Given that not every competitor knows the answers, those that do are gaining share in the channel. It will be interesting to see if any retailers manage to leapfrog the competition with their Pinterest expertise.

wpDiscuz
Braintrust
"We are seeing retailers focus more on the creative aspects of a purchase because uniqueness sells."
"Pinterest may continue to grow, however retailers need to stay close to these trends and be agile enough to switch/add social channels as needed."

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