Pinterest may have a massive user base, but what’s most interesting for marketers is what those users are searching for on the platform. According to Sprout Social, 89% of U.S. Pinterest users are looking for inspiration on their path to purchase. In addition, 47% of users are on the platform specifically to shop. This means the platform has a huge amount of information about how consumers research products or services before making a purchase. Pinterest Trends is a tool that has a lot to offer marketers.
Here we're giving you a step-by-step guide to using the tool. We’ve also asked social media marketing experts to chime in on how this Pinterest feature can be used for market research.
What Is the Pinterest Trends Tool?
Lily Stern, Director of Social Media & Digital Marketing at TheClose.com, describes it as a tool that allows marketers to view top U.S. search terms. It also gives insight into when those specific terms peak on the platform.
That includes the volume for search terms, related terms and popular pins for each keyword. “Pinterest Trends also includes the ‘Top 100’ pages,” added Shawn Pillar, director of marketing at Juicer. “This gives a visual overview of broader umbrella topics that are trending for the year.” These broader umbrella topics are based on a set of more specific topics that are related to each other. “[It] includes both trend-line visuals and numerical stats to allow for easy analysis of the popularity of a given topic.”
Why Pinterest Trends Matters for Marketers
According to Pillar, the platform drives almost four times as much in sales as other popular social media apps. This means the Trends tool is uniquely positioned to give insight into what your target market is interested in. “It is another way of performing social listening, and essentially gives you a sneak peek into a virtually untapped universe of customer data."
"People visit Pinterest to get inspired, save ideas and plan for the future,” said Laura Aranda, lead performance marketing for Freepik Company. That means it’s a way for marketers to better understand how consumers discover and research products and services throughout the customer journey. “Pinterest Trends allows marketers to understand the behavior of their [audience] on this social network,” continued Aranda. She added that it can also be used “to show brand content at the right moment.”
Most importantly, Stern believes the tool can help marketers reach more people within their particular target audience. “With the tool, you can search specific terms relevant to your product. You can also see if they're trending or if they have in the past 12 months,” she said. You can use these insights to formulate what your campaign should be about. They can also help you determine when the best time of year is to launch your campaign.
How to Get the Most out of Pinterest Trends
First up, head over to the Trends page.
Here, you’ll see Pinterest’s recommended trends to check out, prefaced by a search bar. If none of the recommended trend graphs tickle your fancy, don't worry. Just click on the search bar and type in a keyword that’s relevant to your business, blog, or content marketing campaign.
The results page features a graph showing search trends from the last calendar year. You can add up to four keywords or phrases using the search bar at the top of the page.
Tips for Using Pinterest Trends
These metrics can be invaluable for brands. Here's how marketers can use them to their full potential.
Review Pinterest Trends Regularly
Stern suggests checking for trending keywords at least every other week. “That way,” she explained, “you can see if there's a gap in the content you're providing and the content that is trending.” If so, you can create new boards with keywords based on trending topics and potentially reach more people.
“Plan your monthly content in a calendar based on searches,” added Aranda. You can find search terms related to your product or service within Pinterest Trends. Use the results to create a list of keywords that may be worth targeting. “Promote specific content related to the searches,” Aranda suggested, “to reach your target audience.”
Ideate New Marketing Initiatives
“Looking for a new concept for your product/service?” posed Pillar, “Try consulting what's trending on Pinterest.” If there’s a trend around a particular theme, for example, this could be an excellent indicator for marketers to schedule a related event. “This applies particularly to event marketers,” he explained, “that specialize in experiential marketing — one of the most effective forms of brand awareness marketing.” By using Pinterest Trends, brands can eliminate much of the uncertainty when planning experiential activities for their audience.
Think Outside the Box
Pillar recommends marketers get creative when gleaning insights from Pinterest Trends, saying, “If what's trending isn't necessarily related to your products, try thinking about the topics from a different perspective to structure your content marketing.” Even a small connection between your brand and a particular topic has the potential to promote brand awareness. “Also,” Pillar added, “this kind of thinking can help refresh a stale social content marketing process.” Think outside the box, and you’ll make your social media marketing efforts more interesting.
In addition to tracking seasonal trends such as festive gift ideas, marketers should consider paying attention to the time of day they post. According to Social Media Marketing company Coschedule, Pinterest is less timing-sensitive than other platforms. However, there are some times where viewers are more active on the platform.Coschedule suggests the best times to post on Pinterest are:
- Between 8-11 PM, with traffic peaking at 9 PM
- Between 2-4 AM and also 2-4 PM
- Later in the week
It appears Pinterest users are more active later in the week, and in the evening. Timing is less important on Pinterest than on faster-moving platforms such as Twitter but is still important for those who want to maximize traffic. Consider scheduling posts to take advantage of the times when your target demographic is most active.
How Useful Are Pinterest's Trending Topics?
Pinterest's trending topics give an idea of what the platform's users are excited by. But who are those users? Pinterest has historically been a female-dominated platform, but according to Jim Habig, the company's Global Head of Business Marketing, that trend is changing.
In March 2021, Habig spoke at Pinterest Presents. He told attendees the platform's fastest growth is coming from two new demographics: Gen Z and men. Globally, both audiences grew 40% year over year in 2020."
Habig told the audience that the platform now has 459 million monthly active users. He also explained the company is investing in improved analytics tools to help marketers and sellers better target those users.
For now, Pinterest remains a woman-dominated platform, and it's important to take that into account when considering your keyword research.
Integrating Pinterest Trends Into Your Marketing Strategy
Marketing agency Engaiodigital considers Pinterest to be an 'alternative search engine' that has access to a lot of behavioral data from its users. It can help marketers pick up on trends to target not just on Pinterest but on other platforms too.
The agency suggests using Pinterest's trend list in several ways, including:
- Finding topics for content marketing
- Finding new niches via the Pinterest 100 Report
- Discovering new products to sell
- Identifying seasonal themes and ideas
Remember that the Pinterest Trending topic list and Pinterest 100 aren't the only options marketers have for finding new, interesting topics. They can also use the search tool to get recommendations.
Laura Roeder of MeetEdgar, a social media marketing tool provider, suggests using Pinterest Search for inspiration. She explains, "There are multiple ways to find what's trending on Pinterest." For example, she mentions "autocomplete suggestions and related searches" as a useful source of inspiration. The autocomplete feature predicts what a searcher is interested in once they start typing. This can be an effective way to learn what current hot-topics are.
So, for example, typing the keyword "home" could bring up suggestions for home decorating, interiors, and even buying ideas.
After finding potential keywords, marketers can build a list of pages or products to promote. They can also get ideas for new pins, or for things it may be worth re-pinning.
Best Practices for Pinterest Marketing
Visual social media specialist Louise Myers recommends marketers focus on creating new images for their campaigns once they've found the right keywords. Images that are re-used aren't considered fresh. Myers explains, "Pinterest favors fresh pins." She adds that "The emphasis on fresh content has grown through the past year and is firmly established now in 2021."
In the past, a re-pin would count as fresh content, but that is no longer the case. Myers stresses "fresh is all about a new and different image."
Another factor of great importance is relevancy. The days when Pinterest would encourage marketers to share content an audience might like, even if it wasn't strictly relevant, are over. Myers stresses marketers should strive for relevance by "making sure your images, copy, and links are cohesive and appeal to your audience."
One way of doing this is to have boards for different subjects. However, marketers should be careful to limit the number of boards they create and avoid excessive duplication across boards. Myers recommends marketers "save to 10 or fewer highly relevant boards, and duplicate sparingly."
Pinterest is just one social platform, and businesses that are hoping to attract a significant amount of traffic should use others, too. With good keyword research, brands can come up with creative ideas for each platform. Use a combination of repurposed and custom-made content to engage your audience.