Pinterest and Tumblr. If your brands aren’t using them, chances are you’ve considered or will consider it soon.
is, of course, the current darling of social media, a social network in which its users “pin” images to “pinboards” along with brief comments. Tumblr
is an easy breezy blogging platform ideal for photo sharing. It recently hit 20 billion posts.
As more companies and brands move to communicate within these media, we’ll need to rethink (once again) the way we write and present content to gain maximum traction.
As always, when determining whether to create an official presence for your brand in a new medium, you need to determine if it’s the right time to make the move.
Consider these questions before you make that decision:
Can we afford the time/resources it would take to maintain a robust presence in this medium?
- Is my audience there already?
- If so, is my audience already talking about my brand in this space, and how are they talking about it?
- How will this medium help me tell my brand’s story?
- What are the potential risks involved with this medium?
Pinterest is a predominantly visual medium, so it might not be the best place for your brand if you have nothing visual to add. (Careful when pinning, though: As PR Daily
—and at least one advertising lawyer
pointed out, brands need to approach re-pinning with caution due to
Tumblr, meanwhile, is more versatile. But you still see that the most successful posts are those that are visually interesting—photo, video, etc.
For brand managers who are starting to incorporate these media into their social strategy, here are a few tips for planning content with these media.
Understand what your audience wants
As with any social media platform, you have to understand how your audience wants you to communicate with them.
Fashion brands have found great success on Tumblr. This shows an astute understanding of how their audiences are using a certain medium. For example, J.Crew's Tumblr page
goes beyond merely presenting ways for people to spend money, the clothier offers content that gives people ideas on how to use its products in daily life.
The team behind fashion impresario Kate Spade also proves that with these media what you say is far less important than what you post. The brand’s Pinterest page
is a festival of colors, offering tips on how to dress, travel, think, decorate, celebrate and live—colorfully. Its Tumblr presence
is less splashy, though still engaging. The images are vintage-inspired, with plenty of black and white shots, sepia tones, and washed out colors.
Other, non-fashion brands are taking advantage of Pinterest. Regardless of your opinion of the National Rifle Association, the organization has a firm grasp of how to present its content on Pinterest
. Naturally, there are images of firearms and people using them, but there are also pinboards that have a loose connection to guns.
Get creative with how you title your boards
If you’re wondering what it means to be a lifestyle brand in a social space, look to Bergdorf Goodman’s Pinterest page
. The luxury retailer recently put the following question to its Facebook crowd: “Sunday’s are made for …
The company used the responses to create a Pinterest board titled “Sundays are made for …”. The images and copy are in line with the type of lifestyle itsaudience leads. Brunch, mimosas and picnics are represented. “Sitting by an open window” saw more than 75 repins.
Apply this to your brand by asking, “How can I engage my audience around images that will resonate with them?” The copy itself doesn’t have to be anything magical. Really, it’s less writing and more telling a lifestyle story through images.
Be willing to show your brand’s personality
Individuals use Pinterest and Tumblr to show the world what inspires them and what they love about the world around them. Brands should approach their content on these media with the same spirit of enthusiasm. A great example of this is Whole Foods’ Pinterest page
. Obviously, you think recipes and food porn would make the most sense content-wise for this brand. But that’s not all they stick to.
The company was founded in Austin, Texas, and one of their boards features reasons they love Austin. Of the “#whyAustin
” board, Whole Foods writes, “Pretty self explanatory ... This is why we live and build businesses in Austin (the best city in the world)!”
Write to sell the aesthetic
With both of these media, you’re presenting ideas, so keep it simple. Think in terms of two to three word kickers. Don’t overdo it.
For example, Nordstrom balances the matter-of-fact with the clever. Take its spring fashion trends board
, which showcases nautical gear that the retailer offers. Not every post is clever—most just name the product—but pins that are more lifestyle examples, such as “The perfect afternoon,” can inspire sharing and boost engagement.