The Secret to Pinterest for Hardware Stores

February 26, 2018

Facebook and Instagram are social media giants. Why, then, should hardware stores use Pinterest to further their business goals rather than the social media sites with the most users?

It’s not about reaching the most people—it’s about reaching the most relevant audience. That’s Pinterest for hardware retailers.

Pinterest influences 16.4% of social media users to make a purchase a decision. It’s second only to Facebook in influencing purchasing decisions.

We provide a brief overview of Pinterest, share a case study how a major hardware retailer harnessed the power of Pinterest and offer five tips to put Pinterest into practice for your hardware store in this blog post.

Pinterest 101

What:  creative idea sharing social media site Who:  key demographics about Pinterest users (called Pinners)

60% of Pinterest households have children age 5 or younger

40% have a household income of $100,000 or more

70% users are women

50% increase in number of male users

How Many:  75 million active monthly US users

43 million Pinners save DIY ideas

Popularity:  the fifth most popular social media site

30% of all US social media users are on Pinterest

Shopping:  1 in 2 made a purchase after seeing a promoted pin

50% of Millennials say Pinterest inspires them to make dream a reality (vs. 10% who say

Facebook inspires them and 8% say Instagram)

How it Works:  Pinterest is a collection of ideas. Each idea is represented by a pin. Ideas are grouped

together on boards that are created by either Pinners or company Pinterest accounts. Users put a pin on a post they like to create their own boards (usually by need or interest). Most businesses sort their boards by product type, interest or special topic. Pinterest supports photos and video content. Businesses can create ads called promoted pins that look like a regular pin, only reach more people (similar to boosting a Facebook post).

Home Depot Pinterest Case Study

Water heaters are not a glamorous product. But a creative campaign on Pinterest sparked enough interest to boost water heater sales in-store and online for The Home Depot.

“We’ve been looking at Pinterest as a way to connect with customers and drive sales,” Melanie Babcock, senior director of agile marketing at The Home Depot said at a webinar presented by Adweek and Pinterest.

Pinterest draws millions of people who are looking for home repair tips and DIY projects. Home and garden was the third-most popular Pinterest category in 2017.

The water heater awareness campaign used an informational approach that provided consumers with tips and suggestions for people who searched for water heater on Pinterest. The Home Depot developed messaging that targeted known Home Depot customers on Pinterest and retargeting people who had visited their company Pinterest page.

Pinterest audiences like to do research and make purchases with a “trusted parter,” Babcock said, so The Home Depot positioned itself as that trusted parter. Customers had phones in their hands in-store asking for help about the store’s pins.

The water heater campaign showed “amazing” results, Babcock said. They measured total sales, sales lift and return on advertising spend to measure the campaign’s results.

Putting Pinterest into Practice

Now that you’ve seen how Pinterest can be a valuable platform for hardware stores, here are five tips for using Pinterest.

#1:  Share Video Tutorials

Create brief video tutorials showing people how to do a specific project. The Home Depot uploads 15-30 second tutorial videos. Generate a list of customers’ frequently asked questions in-store for ideas on what to make your how-to videos about.

#2:  Provide Inspiration

Show Pinners what a beautiful, finished project looks like. Encourage them to take action by showing how to accomplish the project.

#3:  Educate Pinners

Take a note from The Home Depot’s water heater campaign and educate your customers about certain products. Try educating customers about new products, trending products (environmentally friendly, energy-efficient, etc.), seasonal products (heaters, air conditioners, etc.) and products customers ask about frequently.

#4:  Encourage User-Generated Content

Not all content needs to come from the company! Ask Pinners to share their before-and-after pictures from their DIY projects. Audience participation varies the content and increases engagement.

#5:  Start Early

“Pinners are big-time planners. They tend to start searching twice as early as people on other platforms,” Pinterest said in its Possibilities 2018 planner.

For example, Pinners start saving pins for summer and the Fourth of July in February; Father’s Day in April; and back to college in June and back to college in July. Plan and post content accordingly to reach consumers during their early planning stages.

Service Tags: 
Social Media Management
Marketing Strategy