Life Hack: Use Pinterest!

By Ethan Ferdig, @ethan_ferdig


Pinterest, the internets’ most beloved site to find mason jar lunches, life hacks, and fashion designs, proves to be the most powerful conversion-to-sales social media platform.

From the research many marketers have performed, it’s not shocking that a site featuring attractive photography has high conversion rates. What makes Pinterest unique when compared to other sites, is that 70% of their user base is women. If you’re looking to better your conversions without the use of Pinterest, or maybe you’re looking to improve them and you’re already using Pinterest, you could have a look at these conversion rates tips and tricks.

For companies and brands whose core demographic are women, Pinterest seems like the best social site to drive sales. Pinterest, in early 2015, released “Buyable Pins” allowing transactions to occur without leaving the application. This feature was extremely beneficial, allowing consumers to have easy and succinct buying power.

Pinterest’s huge success can be attributed to features other platforms fail to provide.

The interface of Pinterest resembles an artistic community bulletin board that projects the lifestyle users aspire to live. This creative flow of content allows users to see their posts, or “pins” along with their friends’. Michael Bird, a digital revenue growth specialist and co-founder of Social Garden, reported that only 20% of pins are originals posts; the other 80% are all re-pins.

This data would suggest brands should shift efforts from increasing organic reach on original posts, and instead rely on reach and conversation that comes about from other users repining content. This also shifts the type of content that gets posted to Pinterest. Because of the high repining, brands must work to create
content that entice users to share the content, in addition to interacting with it.

The feature of repining content is unique to Pinterest. While Facebook and Instagram offer features to tag users in posts, or share content through direct messages, neither have proven to boost conversion rates heavily. However, Pinterest differs where “up to 47% of online consumers from the United States have bought product online based on Pinterest recommendations,” (Bird).

Buying product online or through Pinterest is exciting, and it may be reassuring to hear Pinterest’s repining activity is much greater than original posts, but to succeed as a brand you must understand how to speak to your customers. Pinterest has an exceptional SEO system, and brands that utilize the powerful tool will escalate above those who don’t.

Pinterest captions are an extremely powerful tool users rely on. The captions often provide detailed information and are rarely changed when repined by users. Brands need to fill the caption space with valuable content, along with searchable words the SEO engines will recognize. It’s important to not create captions that look like spam in an effort to get more traffic through the SEO engine. Users are less likely to re-pin a post that looks like spam, even if the image is intriguing.

Brands that utilize the power of Pinterest can easily soar above competitors and improve conversion-to-sales rates. All of the tools and data can be daunting and overwhelming, especially for brands that are new to social media. Therefore, I leave some advice:

If you’re feeling defeated or confused with where to start, I would recommend with making small improvements. The ones that make you feel good, like eating that vegan mason jar lunch.



Take a look at Michael Bird’s work:

This Article Has 11 Comments
  1. Ethan,

    This post is really helpful when thinking about our final projects with our clients! For many clients, the bottom line of social media is to get sales, so having the knowledge and information on Pinterest being the most successful at doing just that is fantastic! Not to mention your photos of this post are extremely pinable and are probably already on one of my boards on Pinterest. This was also very well written, and I appreciate the link at the bottom to Michael Bird’s work!

  2. Bailey Rogers says:

    Interesting topic to write about. It is funny how Pinterest used to be much more dominated by DIY crafts and was a resource for consumers to create things on their own. Like other social media outlets, it has gotten more commercialized as sponsored ads and paid media are on the popular rise. I was never a huge consumer of Pinterest like the way some people can get addicted, but it is definitely the go-to place for when I want to make or get ideas for a cute gift and was a must need for travelling abroad.

  3. Mark Kellman says:

    I find it interesting how little so many of us think about Pinterest as one of the main social media platforms. Probably because it is so female dominated. What you say is also evident that brands must change their voice when posting to Pinterest because the audience is different than that on Facebook and Twitter. As a social media producer I don’t really think about Pinterest, but maybe I should?

  4. Kate Miller says:

    This is an interesting take on Pinterest. I love Pinterest! I get a lot of recipe, style, photography, hair, and even adventure ideas from Pinterest. I think it is a very powerful social media platform and more men should be using it. The link you shared was very helpful as well. Great information, I hope this inspires more men to join the Pinterest craze.

  5. Emily Hamann says:

    One aspect of Pinterest I think that is attractive to people is the fact that it is mostly repins. We all want to contribute content, but many of us are not content creators so a space for content distributors to thrive creates a huge market and a safe place for many. One thing I thought was cool was that I saw Pinterest being utilized by a Spanish arts and culture class. There was a group Pinterest page where each student contributed and analyzed a pin for that week. It was a great way to see different examples of art/food/music from other cultures as well as the many ways in which the students understood these pins. I think there are endless possibilities for Pinterest and that with the right PR it could be made to look more appealing to men too.

  6. Brooke Halvorsen says:

    This is so surprising to me! I use Pinterest quite frequently, but I have never purchased anything from Pinterest, nor even thought about it. It totally does make sense, but I am with Kelli on this one…. I use it for the quotes! The occasional recipe, and Bali travel tips are great too though.

    Plus #masonjarsfolyfe

  7. Sarah Johnson says:

    I go on Pinterest almost every day, and never think to buy things from it! Most of the things I see are DIY or ideas for new nail colors, tattoos, or for your wedding day. I recently used Pinterest to go to an Etsy link and purchase something online, so does that technically mean I purchased something from Pinterest? I also love how everyone’s Pinterest is different. It is tailored to your own interests and knows what you may like. All in all it is a great platform and this is a wonderful post!

  8. Amanda Lam says:

    I love Pinterest for DIY crafts and recipes! However, I don’t have any experience using it as a marketing tool. I find that I usually ignore brand content and sponsored posts because I see Pinterest as a blogging space more than anything. However, after learning about social media influencers, I feel that this is good route to test out on Pinterest.

    I would love to experiment more with Pinterest if given the chance!

  9. Kristin Peixotto says:

    This is a great piece on how Pinterest can be utilized. I think it will soon be even more powerful with the new Pinterest Lens ( This tool will soon allow users to take pictures of the world around us and search for them on Pinterest. For example, you love your best friend’s new shoes but she can’t remember where she bought them. With the lens, you can take a picture and find them.

  10. Talia Smith says:

    I gave myself a pat on the back last Christmas when my boyfriend and his brother asked for advice on making budget friendly homemade gifts. I sat them down at a computer and had them both sign up for a Pinterest account. I’m not sure why Pinterest is SO female heavy because it is useful for everyone… especially broke college kids during the holidays.

    I would agree that more potential lies in the repins. It’s not the same as shares for Facebook or retweets for Twitter because many pinners do not post original content like users do on other social media sites. Pinners are looking for experts to create pretty pictures and clever captions to share and add to their boards. I think certain brands would be smart to capitalize on Pinterest’s sharable opportunities.

  11. Nick Hudson says:

    Confession – I don’t think I really knew what Pinterest was before taking this class, outside of users pinned things things to boards… or something. So thanks for educating me on how Pinterest can be used not only by the average consumer, but also by brands looking to stand out! Really interesting to read about the high conversion rates on Pinterest compared to other platforms – would be interested to see what the user demographics look like in comparison and what brands would be best served by a Pinterest strategy.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.