Pinterest, the darling online bulletin board and favorite of foodies is a great social channel for food brands. Not for the sake of just jumping into what's new in social media, but for real engagement and community building. Pinterest has some distinct advantages over other social media especially Facebook for staying current on trends. Pinterest users tend to be people who follow visual interests like fashion, art, interior design and our favorite topic, FOOD. People who visit also tend to spend more time browsing and sharing content vs. Facebook. If you look at all the different stats throughout 2012, the average session on Facebook is about 75 minutes vs. 88 minutes on Pinterest. Doesn't sound like much, except when you think about the higher conversion rate on Pinterest.
Here are some of the major reasons why big brands like Kraft are embracing Pinterest and winning foodie hearts around the world:
Advantages for Food Brands:
- Visual Impact of Delicious Food
- Viral nature of recipes - We naturally want to share good things!
- It's About Curation: Sharing photos is easier than blogging so influencers can re-pin more of the brand's content. BizRate Survey revealed that 67% of online shoppers keep track of or collect things they like. Can you say "Wish List"?
- Staying Current: 67% also said they used Pinterest to "Keep Up with the latest trends on things I like". Calling all Foodies! An easier way to stay on the pulse of consumers. Crowdsourcing.
- Pinterest is better at being a "Purchase Muse". BizRate survey in August 2012 show's 70% of the online shoppers polled used Pinterest "To Get Inspiration On What To Buy".
For some great examples check out Kraft Recipes on Pinterest and Oreo Daily twist on Pinterest with their unusual presentation of their product… showing that presenting food in unusual ways can help gain traction. Social Fresh provides a list of other brands besides food that are finding success on Pinterest. If you want to see how a small food brand uses visual content check out Three Tarts Bakery in New York City .
Why Use Pinterest for Food Marketing?
Artisan, local and Specialty food brands, what's in this for you foodpreneurs? Plenty! For me the two biggest reasons are:
· Pinterest enthusiasts spend more money than any of the other top five social media platforms. They also spend more frequently and on more items.
- Food is the top category on Pinterest weighing in at 12% of pins.
- Pinterest is the 3rd most popular social network in the US .
- Pinterest generated more referral traffic for businesses than Google+, YouTube, and LinkedIn combined.
- Pinterest skews heavily to females. According to Pew Research 20% of women who use the Interest are on Pinterest .
- Crowdsourcing for food trends … check out the pins with high "Likes" and "Re-Pins" and see if you can find a common thread.
- Content Marketing is supercharged with great images of your food.
If you really want a deep dive go to Pinterest Statistics where there are over 56 pins of infographics on everything you need to see how much Pinterest can do for your food brand, you may be asking "how do I get started?"
5 Ways to Use Pinterest for Visual Content Marketing
All foodpreneurs say their products taste great but sometimes the packaging gets in the way of really showcasing your food. What better way to convey GREAT TASTE than showing great pictures of your product fully prepared… showing it in the best light. Food ideas, recipes and just plain inspiration are supported by the visual nature of Pinterest. So how can you inspire them to buy your brand?
Start by finding interesting ways to present your food. Oreo's Daily Twist shows their cookies posing as hamburgers and the surface of Mars. By making it unique and unexpected, you'll see the re-pins taking off as people will want to share those one-of-a-kind photos. Plus it's more fun than the usual jar or plate of food from a menu.
Share Recipes. Ok, you're a foodpreneur which means you probably have some creative ways to use your product in a traditional recipe or maybe your food product is so unusual that you need to educate people on what to make with it.
Celebrate and Connect with Influencers in Your Target Market . Big brands know that mommy bloggers carry loads of influence online. So find some Mommy Bloggers through sites like Babble,Klout,Top Mommy Blogs and if your product has a healthy component, check out FitFluential. Give them some special recognition and tips with awesome photos or special offers on Mother's Day and Valentine's Day.
Use Campaigns and Social Couponing. Coupons are easily sharable when they are images and easy to execute. Just find an engaging image and link your 'pin' to your online coupon. Voila!
Support your Pinterest efforts with your website content. Post lots of high quality photos and then have your webmaster install a "Pin it" button on your blog posts and photos.
So, what are you waiting for? Get out there and start building boards on Pinterest for your food brand and watch your marketing soar!