The Golden Rules of Pinterest for Beauty Brands

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The Golden Rules of Pinterest for Beauty Brands

Love a good news story? Our enthusiasm for visual social platforms is booming, and none more than for Pinterest. The virtual pinboard was launched in 2009 and has experienced amazing growth, reaching 10 million uniques faster than any other, and is now the third most popular social networking site behind Facebook and Twitter.

With the following stats alone, it makes sense that the beauty industry should have its sights on embracing Pinterest in their social marketing plans:

  • Buyers spend more money, more often, and on more items than any of the other top 5 social media sites – comScore
  • Of those who have a Pinterest account, 21% have purchased an item directly after seeing it on the Pinterest site – comScore
  • Women are the dominant demographic. Depending on where you access data, anything from 72% to a staggering 97% of its user base.
  • Pinterest generates more referral traffic for businesses than Google+, YouTube, and LinkedIn combined – Shareaholic
  • Hair & Beauty images account for 5.4% of all pins/repins – Repinly
  • The all-time top cosmetic image is on Laura’s Beauty Board. It’s been repinned 26,055 times, has 5,610 likes and 203 comments. Originating on Tumblr,  she explains how to create a water marble nail polish effect that has captured the imagination – Repinly

This rapid growth has drawn more brands than ever to the site – success breeds success. Now being wooed with business accounts, with offers of widgets and buttons that can be added to their websites to help bring customers to their Pinterest page. This is great news for beauty brands who thrive on visual appeal and enthusiastic recommendations from friends and influencers.

But to create stunning and effective boards, it’s not about uploading promotional images and hoping that others will want to repin! There are too many gorgeous images to tempt users elsewhere. It’s about finding creative ways to show how your products and services fit into the lifestyle of your target audience. To go viral you have to have meaning, empathy and an image to die for.

Follow these golden rules:

Plan your boards

Before you open an account, decide how your individual boards are going to be themed and select at least five gorgeous images for each. Your boards go live instantly – nothing looks less professional than white spaces where colour should be. Or create them initially as Secret Boards (which means that only you can see them) and when you’re ready, let them go public.

What makes you tick?

Boards should reflect the heart of the company and what inspires employees and customers. Think beyond your product ranges (your website is your online brochure) and let followers look behind the scenes. Let them get to know the brand better with events, tutorials, things that staff love, and passions other than your own products. Be creative with an inspired medium.

Drive commercial traffic

Images can be traced to their original location, which is why links are driving so much commercial traffic. When Pinterest users visit your website, they have the ability to pin photos or videos, save an image and upload it onto their own Pinterest boards, or enter a URL into Pinterest and scroll through the various images on your site, to share the most fabulous on

Include captions & hashtags

Include a caption that tells the story behind the image to capture the imagination: 200 characters will get more repins – Dan Zarella. Use backlinks and hashtag# keywords that have been identified in your SEO strategy to make images more search-friendly.

Share others’ passions

Pinterest is all about sharing – it’s expected that you’ll browse other pinners’ collections and repin when you share a similar interest. Those who follow you will see what you’ve pinned in their stream, and yours in theirs. It’s good to ‘like’ and ‘comment’ on images on others’ boards and follow those who share your passions. Do it regularly; activity attracts new fans.

Create user generated pinboards

Enable followers to contribute their own pins to your pinboards, opening up a great opportunity to involve fans and customers in your marketing. Pick out a few of your top evangelists and create a board dedicated to their pins. Or how about asking followers for the best images of themselves using your product? Smiling customers are good for business.

Build a following

Use other social platforms, especially Facebook to create exposure and build your following. Establishing a large audience is one of the most important aspects of successful Pinterest marketing. So how do you do it? In the set-up process you can choose to link your Pinterest account to your Facebook Personal page, but there is currently no way to automatically link with your Fan page. Simply, go to Woobox and create a tab for your Fan page – your boards can be viewed without leaving Facebook. Consider launching a Pinterest contest, then tweet and blog to promote it.

Capture insights

There are softer aspects of brand building that you won’t be able to capture, but links on your images will generate leads to your website that you can keep track of. Such insights will show how useful this platform is in comparison to your other marketing efforts.

This is how to do it…

Many beauty brands and retailers have yet to discover the wonders of this platform. For those who have, there are surprisingly few who are telling a captivating story.  Take a leaf out of these brands books:

Youngblood Mineral Cosmetics is a young cruelty-free product range that combines colour and compassion in their boards, using many images which aren’t their own. Their Blogger Love board is inspired…“We must give credit where credit is due – we love our bloggers!”

Maybelline excels on Pinterest! They captivate what it’s like to be in New York, they’ve featured girls who are ‘Born with It’ and vintage advertisements to echo their heritage. They share their pleasure by ‘liking’ other’s images. Our favourite is the Pink & Green board – having launched Great Lash Mascara in the UK, its iconic colours bring back happy memories.

We love the way Birchbox has inspirational boards where ‘unboxing’ videos are shared, with tips and tricks from Birchbox TV – 814,599 followers seem to agree! A great example of how to cross-promote content to give a wider audience exposure to a brand. The thrill of receiving a monthly subscription box is captured in images of the boxes sent to customers, giving sneak peeks of which products were included.

Beauty retail is perfected by Sephora with over 122,000 followers. There is seasonal content and content by product type, which you’d expect – but it’s the mix of tutorials, launches, events, hot news, competitions (’40 Days of Wishes’ Daily Sweepstake was popular) and staff picks, that ensure that followers return on a regular basis.

Gorgeous!

Is Pinterest part of your social marketing?  Are you a beauty brand who has tracked success with Pinterest? Are there aspects of your boards that have worked particularly well? We’d love to hear your comments.

Kathy Wrennall

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