After our recent interview with Dave Chaffey, today we’re interviewing Susan Gunelius of KeySplash Creative in the second of our conversations with Pinterest marketing experts.
Susan Gunelius is President & CEO of KeySplash Creative, Inc., a marketing communications company. She is a 20-year marketing veteran whose client list includes AT&T, HSBC, Cox Communications, Citibank, and many more large and small companies around the world. Susan is frequently interviewed by television, radio, print, and online media organizations about marketing, branding, and social media, and she writes about marketing for Forbes.com and Entrepreneur.com.
1. When and how did you first get into Pinterest marketing?
I got an early invite to Pinterest and started analyzing it right away as a marketing tool. The idea of visual sharing seemed like a perfect fit for creative brands.
2. What’s your involvement with Pinterest marketing day-to-day at the moment?
I work on strategic branding and leveraging social media for content marketing and brand development. Pinterest is just one tool I include in strategic marketing plans for my clients.
3. Are you seeing a lot of interest from clients for Pinterest marketing?
Most of my clients haven’t fully embraced Pinterest yet. However, my specialties are B2B and financial marketing, which aren’t industries that would typically prioritize Pinterest at the top of the to-do list yet. It’s on the radar for them and being added to their integrated marketing plans, but budget and resource investments are still small for Pinterest among my typical clients.
4. How should business owners decide whether or not to spend time on Pinterest when there are so many other things they could be doing?
I think the first question they need to ask themselves is whether or not their customers are on Pinterest or are likely to be on Pinterest in the near future. Pinterest is growing, but the majority of users are still women. Of course, women make or influence the majority of purchase decisions, so it could easily be argued that, as a result, every brand has an audience on Pinterest. It’s also important to ensure that your brand is prepared to communicate visually to consumers. If you don’t have your brand story prepared in a way that can be meaningfully communicated without the context of words, then you’re probably not ready to fully leverage Pinterest yet.
5. For businesses that are already using Pinterest to some extent, what’s one top thing most of them could improve to make their efforts more effective?
Integration with the broader marketing plan and the tactics within that plan. I think that’s a struggle for most businesses that are trying to find their way in social media and content marketing. Unfortunately, we’re still seeing a great deal of silo marketing in online and offline marketing. Brands that successfully integrate their marketing efforts so one tactic feeds off the next are still few and far between.
6. What are some Pinterest marketing campaigns you’re particularly proud of/impressed by?
I don’t think any campaigns have blown me away yet, but that’s not surprising. It’s very early in the Pinterest lifecycle for the perfect campaign to have been launched already. However, I think Proctor & Gamble launched a great integrated campaign that included Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube, commercials, and more as part of its sponsorship of the 2012 Olympic Games in London. The brand generated a significant amount of buzz from the campaign as well as direct engagement from consumers.
7. What’s your favorite Pinterest marketing tip for more advanced Pinterest merketers?
I think advanced Pinterest marketers should follow the same tips that an evolving brand marketer should follow. Don’t just focus on features and benefits messaging and images that support those messages. Instead, focus on tapping into consumers’ emotions by telling stories and building relationships with consumers that make it easy for them to share your content and talk about your brand. Creating emotional involvement in a brand is one of the most important steps of developing a powerful brand, and images can tap into emotions and connect consumers to brands through those emotions in a powerful way. It’s also a critical step to turning repeat customers into loyal customers and vocal brand advocates. In other words, move past pinning pictures of products and evoke emotions with your pins that can drive word-of-mouth marketing.
8. How do you see the world of Pinterest evolving over the next 12 months?
We’ll see more third party apps and tools launched to help brands better understand the results of their efforts on Pinterest as well as competitor sites and tools. Several useful tools are already available and others are still in beta. There is definitely a need for better metrics.
9. How can people best find you online?
The best places to find me online are my company website at www.keysplashcreative.com and my blog for women in business at www.womenonbusiness.com. My most active social profile is Twitter (@susangunelius).