Study Finds Pinterest Growing in Popularity and Usefulness

Peter Roesler, President - Web Marketing Pros

By Peter Roesler

President, Web Marketing Pros

Though Facebook clearly remains the dominate social media network, business owners and marketers would be unwise to ignore the potential in the power of Facebook’s competitors. There is a lot of data that suggests each social media platform appeals to some demographics more than others and influences buyer behavior in different ways. A recent study of Pinterest shows the photo sharing power is growing in popularity and driving sales online and in-stores.

“As you may have already heard, today we proudly release Ahalogy’s 2015 Pinterest Media Consumption Study—the second annual version of our research* that measures how Pinterest affects consumer behavior and media habits,” wrote Seman Sehgal in a post on the Ahalogy blog.  “For 2015, we examined how demographics, habits, and behaviors have changed—or remained constant—compared to last year, digging deeper into Pinners’ usage, mobile and shopping behaviors, Promoted Pins, key demographics (Men, Moms, Hispanics), and geographics beyond the US (UK and Canada).”

The study shows that Pinterest is growing in popularity among key demographics that are important to marketers. A key change is the growing popularity of Pinterest among young users. According to the report, users under the age of 40 account for two thirds (67%) of the Pinterest audience, this is up from 40 percent reported last year.

And though Pinterest remains predominately used by women, who account for four out of five (82%) of Pinterest users, the number of men on the platform is increasing. Men now make up 18 percent of Pinterest users, up from 13 percent last year. It’s not just a matter of new men signing up and then leaving. According to the report, almost two thirds of Active having joined in the past year.

Pinterest is also seeing tremendous growth in usage by Hispanic consumers. The researchers noted that Hispanics membership is growing by reporting that more than half of Pinterest’s Hispanic users joined in the past year. This means that Pinterest gained as many Hispanic users in the past year than they had in all their previous years combined.

The study also provided evidence why marketers should post their new product images to Pinterest. Getting a new product by people likely to try new things is important for any product launch. The study found that 42 percent of Pinterest users are “early adopters”. a 10 percent increase from the previous year. This means that Pinterest is becoming an evermore important platform for product launches.

Pinterest-ChartOne of the most interesting aspects of the data is that is shows how consumers are using Pinterest to replace other forms of media. For example, Pinterest has become a way to get home design idea, fashion tips and hair styles. This has led 63 percent of Pinterest users replace magazines and catalogs with Pinterest. While this is certainly bad news for print magazines, the results for business owners are good. Nearly three out of four Pinterest users (73%) bought a product found on Pinterest.

The benefits aren’t just online. Two out of three (67%) users surveyed said they pull up Pins while shopping in-store.  All of this data makes using the new Promoted Pins on Pinterest all the more appealing. This is something else that was covered in the report. Interestingly, only 47% of the people surveyed were aware of Promoted Pins, and many reported they didn’t notice or mind them.

The low awareness of Promoted Pins may sound like a good thing, but this is something Pinterest will need to address. The FTC is pretty clear about making sponsored content easy to identify. It’s one thing to show sponsored content in a way that doesn’t distract from the experience, but if the majority of people don’t recognize that some of the Pins they’re seeing are paid promotions, this can become problematic from a regulatory standpoint. Though, since the Promoted Pin feature is still fairly new, there’s a possibility that many of the people surveyed haven’t encountered them yet.

All things considered, this report shows that Pinterest is a powerful platform that is only growing in usefulness. Marketers should be sure to create a Pinterest account for their brand to take advantage of this growing social platform.

For more information about Pinterest, read this article on Pinterest adding a buy it button to certain pins.


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