The power of graphic elements – Why Pinterest is giving brands a sales boost

Graphic elements in design provide viewers a way to understand content.  Many elements such as bold text, color, and composition help direct the eye to content throughout any medium.  The Internet is no different in the need for these graphic elements to have an impact in the communication process.  According to a Nielson report, users scan web pages instead of reading them, making the use of graphic elements a very important aspect for success online.

WOM, Social Commerce

eMarketer Pinterest Report findings

One platform that has based its service around the visual process is Pinterest.  How is this impacting online social interaction?  For marketers this platform has become a major player in social commerce efforts.  A recent eMarketer report explains that Pinterest has taken the lead in social commerce over other social media platforms. “According to, comScore and The Partnering Group, internet users followed more retailers on it [Pinterest] (9.3) than on Twitter (8.5) or Facebook (6.9) in March 2012”. The eMarketer report statistics also show that the weight of recommendations through Pintrest has more weight in the purchase decision than other social sites. “Close to half of US female Pinterest users had gone on to make a purchase based on recommendations received there, compared to around one-third of female users of Facebook or Twitter”.

What aspects of Pinterest contribute to this success rate?  Visuals provide the ability to comprehend other’s personalities and align product recommendations to other user’s interests and style.  The use of visuals not only shares a human aspect from consumer to consumer but also humanizes brands. Visual consistency and proper mechanics (linking back to product pages for easy shopping) creates brand engagement.

If Pinterest users are so influential, why aren’t more brands developing engagement on the site?  Emarketer explains efforts are lagging because of the difficult in calculating revenue to Pinterest initiatives. “… a sale could occur months after viewing a pin and may ultimately take place offline. Even so, brands and retailers, particularly those specializing in home goods, apparel and accessories, have been reporting results that show promise for others”.

Creating visual consistency and having proper programing can become expensive. Are the un-attributed payouts worth the efforts?  I would love to hear success stories and tips for marketers.


2 responses to “The power of graphic elements – Why Pinterest is giving brands a sales boost

  1. I think many companies that aren’t using Pinterest have yet to understand it. It’s all visual which is one of the most appealing things for customers, but I think some companies are having a more difficult time telling their stories through visuals alone. The companies that are showing successes through Pinterest have embraced the concept fully.
    As far as measuring sales and unique visitors I think a company can show a correlation. Analytic programs can track visitors and sales. Here is a great article describing how four small businesses have successfully used Pinterest to grow their business.


  2. Teresa, I agree that many companies are having a difficult developing strong visual branding through Pinterest. The obstacle of this developement is often the overwhelming question of where do we start? Budgeting and cost is also arises when there often is no definition of specific marketing initiatives within the Pinterest objective. What brands need to keep in mind is that the best approach is to integrate Pinterest into all other marketing initiatives. Visual consistancy should already be happening, Pinterest can be a bit of a check and ballance for consistancy.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s