Everyone is talking about social sharing site Pinterest – The New New Thing. It is a very fast growing site with over 11 million visits in December, a 40X increase in six months. You get the feeling it’s starting to hit critical mass and will go mainstream and big time in 2012. The demos of the site skew heavily to women 25-54 and have a higher concentration in the Midwest, where the site has roots. Pinterest is a layer on top of the existing web and social graph as it links easily with Facebook and Twitter in addition to any website.
Pinterest provides a visual medium to display items of interest and more importantly for purchase. This new data is going to open a lot of eyes: Pinterest now drives more referral traffic than Google Plus, LinkedIn and YouTube combined. That is staggering for a relatively new site.
From a commerce standpoint, Pinterest falls in line with the idea that every platform can be a storefront for a retailer. The advent of social media and tablets has opened up new avenues to engage customers and sell products. Several retailers (Nordstrom, Lands End, Etsy) have taken notice and begun to open up shops on the site
In some respects, Pinterest could be more powerful than Facebook for commerce for the following reasons:
Facebook is built around personal profiles while Pinterest is built around common interests. The true utility of Facebook is social networking; and while many people follow brands it is estimated that only 1% of people interacts with brands on FB. On the other hand, Pinterest boards are built around common interest i.e. home décor, fashion, gardening, parenting, etc.
When potential customers are looking at boards they are in the mode of being interested in that category of product vs. scanning Facebook for a variety of social reasons. Pinterest may build more of a permission based relationship with brands than Facebook or Twitter (which is not visual) or Google Plus. And, sharing is easier and more encouraged on Pinterest. For any retailer targeting women it makes sense to begin to build boards of product images and begin to encourage sharing. This can fit in nicely with an integrated campaign that incorporates the web, mobile and social platforms. As always, you need to be where you customers are spending time to immerse them in your brand. Based on the new referral numbers, the interest and sharing on Pinterest is translating into action.
http://www.ignitesocialmedia.com/social-networks/pinterest-demographic-data/ Demographic Information
http://mashable.com/2012/01/29/pinterest-retail-infographic/ How retailers are using it
http://www.pcmag.com/slideshow/story/293314/how-do-people-use-pinterest/1 How people are using it