Pin or Pass? Pinterest as Part of PR Picture

It is safe to say that we are in a digital age where social media plays a huge role in the way PR practitioners communicate their clients’ message, promote events and collect feedback from the public. Every day there seems to be a new form of social media and a new way to communicate your message to target audiences. Facebook pioneered the field and soon Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and others followed.

Pinterest was one of the new trends in social media which, according to Business Insider, grew from 5,000 users in August 2010 to 17 million users in 2012. You may have also heard that Pinterest Drives More Referral Traffic Than Google Plus, YouTube and LinkedIn Combined

If you ask any business or PR firm, they will tell you that they use Facebook and/or Twitter, but Pinterest often goes unused or misused. This begs the question: Is Pinterest important to a brand and how can a business or PR firm use it effectively?

In Scott Hepburn’s blog post for Media Emerging titled, “Marketing on Pinterest Requires a Plan,” he lays out a plan for what to consider for your Pinterest plan:


Your Pinterest strategy will vary depending on how you answer those questions. Here are some things to consider in a Pinterest plan:

Pinning vs. Following. Which is a better use of your time: Pinning photos or following other Pinterest users? Nothing says you have to Pin things to use Pinterest. Consider whether sharing content is a necessary part of your strategy.

Pinterest Referral Traffic. Marketers and bloggers are giddy over the amount of traffic Pinterest drives to their websites. Traffic is good…qualified traffic is better. Pinterest referrals are valuable because those visitors who are visually attracted to your brand. Still, watch your analytics to see whether the surge in traffic leads to a similar uptick in conversions and sales.

Your Website Images. Is getting visitors to share your images on Pinterest one of your goals? This is an important strategic question. If so, does your website have enough images? Are they share-worthy? Nobody shares boring images. Do you include the “Pin It” button on your page to encourage Pinterest users to share your images?

Engagement Strategy. What do you do if a Pinterest user pins an image of your product? Will you follow them? Like their Pin? Repin it? Comment? Will you connect with Pinterest users on other social platforms like Twitter and Facebook?

Branded Pinterest Board. Should you create a branded Pinterest board? How well known is your brand? Why would someone want to follow your brand’s Pinterest board? How will you promote your Pinterest boards? Will you re-allocate marketing resources to promote your Pinterest board instead of your other social media pages?

Do you think that Hepburn’s suggestions are helpful? If so, what role will Pinterest play in the future of public relations tactics?

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1 Response to Pin or Pass? Pinterest as Part of PR Picture

  1. Zander Buel says:

    Pinterest seems to be under-utilized because its image-specific content is, at first glance, inaccessible. Platforms like Facebook and Twitter are easier in helping mold a brand because they allow words.

    But Pinterest is still essential. Putting someone in charge who has an eye for image-driven content can find plenty of useful pictures and images (and everything else Pinterest offers) to help visualize the brand for its fans. In a small way, it is considerably more abstract than Facebook or Twitter, or YouTube, for that matter. But no less useful.

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