I'm always curious to see how brands use various platforms to engage their customers and fans. I've been scouting for early brand adoption examples on Pinterest, a new website that puts a digital spin on pin boards.
I wrote about how Pinterest is a great platform for personal use, but it seems like brands are starting to get in on the action as well.
Here are 11 real world examples of how brands can use Pinterest:
1. Shop It To Me
Business type: Online personal shopping portal/flash sale site.
Shop It To Me uses Pinterest to post curated-style inspiration from around the Web. It also has a board dedicated to its flash sales.
Business type: Measurer of online influence.
Klout uses Pinterest to post pictures of team/office events. It also has a board dedicated to Klout Perks. Klout Perks highlights the products and services that its members receive based on their digital influence.
Business type: Fashion specialty retailer of clothing, shoes and accessories.
Nordstrom has a dedicated social team that curates its Pinterest boards. The boards showcase seasonal trends and different product categories. It also just started a board dedicated to its in-house spa and salon, as well as a board with photos from inside various stores.
4. Cabot Cheese
Business type: Farm family-owned cooperative located in Vermont that produces all natural, award-winning cheeses.
Cabot Creamery uses Pinterest to post photos of the types of foods you can make with or from its products. It also has a board for photos of Vermont and vintage photos of farms and farmers.
5. Chris March
Business type: Fashion designer and cast member of "Mad Fashion" on Bravo TV.
March uses Pinterest to post design inspiration and final looks from each episode of his show. He usually posts the boards immediately after an episode airs, which is a great way for him to engage with his fashion-obsessed fans.
6. West Elm
Business type: Home furnishing company that designs products for modern living.
West Elm uses Pinterest to curate design inspiration around specific trends, like modernist, color blocking, stripes, etc. This is a great way to visualize trends for customers, who can then click through to the West Elm site and purchase products that fit their chosen aesthetic.
7. Bergdorf Goodman
Business type: luxury retailer.
Bergdorf's uses Pinterest to highlight different trends.
8. Whole Foods
Business type: grocer
Whole Foods' Pinterest boards provide inspiration for all things food, such as seasonal cooking, hot kitchen decor, and food as art.
Business type: Retailer of gourmet foods and professional-quality cookware.
Williams-Sonoma's boards focus on ways to use its various products.
10. "Real Simple" magazine
Business type: Print publication that provides creative, practical and inspiring solutions that make life easier.
Living up to its name, Real Simple's boards focus on making readers' lives easier. It provides easy hair ideas, a month's worth of meals, etc.
Business type: Bridal collection from Urban Outfitters.
BHLDN uses Pinterest to curate design inspiration for every aspect of a wedding. The boards are perfect for any bride-to-be.
Have you spotted any other brands on Pinterest?
Sakita Holley is president of House of Success, a New York based PR and brand management agency. She blogs at SakitaHolley.com, where this article originally ran.