While most online marketers can readily grasp the reasons why Facebook or Twitter are such powerful social media campaign tools, many of them are still baffled by exactly what Pinterest is all about as well as the best ways to obtain the same level of powerful response as is garnered through the major text-based social networks. Marketers really can’t be blamed for buying into the conventional comprehension of Pinterest as a place where little old ladies from the Midwest hang out to check out each other’s knitting patterns, but Pinterest has branding capacities well beyond that stereotype. Pinterest’s management is rising to the challenge of satisfying brand marketers’ need to gain insight into the behavior of their pinners by partnering up with major technology companies to provide a variety of analytical tools.

Pinterest is partnering up with major tech providers
Pinterest has solicited the partnership of technology providers such as Hootsuite, Salesforce, Percolate, Spredfast, Curalate, Tailwind and Piqora and will be providing them direct access to information onto pinners’ behavior, interaction, and general activity on the site. Although several of these companies were previously providing somewhat similar analytics, they will now have direct access to the data right from Pinterest’s servers which should allow them to compile a far more mature and in-depth analytical service. Pinterest is also enhancing their API so that data collection and analysis becomes faster and easier than it is at this time.

Pinterest Analytics has flaws which have frustrated marketers
All of this is not expected to replace Pinterest Analytics, but supplement it with a variety of tools which can be leveraged by online marketers to further refine their understanding of pinners’ behavior and actions. It’s not exactly a secret that Pinterest Analytics to date has ranked rather low among the offerings from the other major social networks such as Google+. Pinterest Analytics had several flaws, omissions and restrictions which have long frustrated online marketers:

  • The data generally does not include information on any pins you generate from third party websites
  • Analytics data begins at the time the website is verified and is not retroactive, so if you were pinning to a business page prior to that you’re out of luck
  • Each pin is counted as an individual, so if one person posts multiple original pins, it will look in your analytics as if there were multiple pinners
  • There is no information on individual pinners who are interacting with pins that you have repinned, thereby failing to provide a comprehensive perspective on how they’re interacting with your presence.

Providing deep access to Pinterest user data directly to the major industry partners is a definite step forward in remedying these problems and given the caliber of the companies that the image based social networking site is partnering with, Pinterest marketers can likely count on being able to benefit from a wealth of analytical options from these companies in the very near future.

Promoted Pins ads are currently being tested by selected major brands
Pinterest expects that providing this profound level of direct information access will allow online marketers to determine which specific activities on the site are able to generate the highest level of engagement, and how to craft their entire Pinterest campaign in a manner which best serves the needs of the customers and the aspirations of the brand. Towards that end, they are currently in the process of testing a paid advertising system which it has entitled “Promoted Pins.” So far this test has been restricted to a rather limited list of major advertisers such as Unilever, Four Seasons Hotels, Hellman’s, and TRESemme, but Pinterest expects to roll out this advertising facilitation to their brand customers at large very soon.

Gaining an overview of how your brand is engaging its customers on Pinterest is necessary in order to comprehend the complete “picture” of what the pins are from your domain, the reaction to your pins, and the composition and quirks of your particular community. You’ll soon have greater access to this entire range of data to test your content strategies, target your consumer base, and inform them about your brand’s products and values.