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Who is Winning by Pinning? The Best of Pinterest Campaigns (So Far)

With Pinterest exploding over the last few months, it was only a matter of time before brands got on the bandwagon – but did we all expect an influx of contests? I enjoy brands’ boards of relevant items and how-to’s, but are contests really worth their time? After looking into it a bit, I rounded up a few notable contests (and one that I’m still skeptical about) to get a handle on what the future might bring as far as contests for avid pinners like myself.

Kotex launched what is considered to be the “first brand Pinterest campaign” with their “Women’s” which targeted 50 women in Israel to find what inspired them. Their boards inspired gift boxes which were individualized and sent to them – these gift boxes exploded onto Pinterest and blogs garnering 700K + impressions. This campaign was great because it embraced the true nature of Pinterest – and let’s be honest, don’t we all hope that someone would send us a package with everything we pin onto our “wants” boards? 


Another campaign that I didn’t see a lot of press on was British Midland International (bmi)’s Pinterest Lottery. This campaign didn’t completely clinch the Pinterest idea of individualization, but played off the “board” aspect – turning it more into a game of numbers and chance.  To play, consumers had to repin bmi destinations (each was labeled with a number on the bmi boards) to their own boards. Then, bmi chose six numbers and the consumer with that combination on their board would win.  It had more than 3,000 entries in the first two weeks alone – which is downright impressive for one of the first Pinterest contests out there.  I liked this because it really plays up the “game” aspect, making it a bit more interactive and fun than others. Since they have let consumers know that they will continue releasing new boards for the lottery – it will be interesting to how popular they increasingly become overall on the platform. 

One recently introduced Pinterest contest by Cloud 9, has me initially skeptical – due to the involved nature and effort consumers will need to put into their entries. Involving multiple steps and 10 required pins, it could have just been the writing, but halfway through the directions I threw up my hands and decided it was too time consuming (but wait, aren’t we all spending almost an hour and a half on there anyways? These facts seem to escape me at the time).

So what do we want from upcoming Pinterest contests? Let’s get a quick recap from the examples – personalization, multiple chances to win & fun interaction and easy steps and instructions. One thing that I do appreciate about Cloud 9’s contest is the chance to get personal about your submission – something I think is key for the future of these contests. While we all appreciate the quick and easy submissions, Pinterest is all about getting your personal preferences and likes out there and stated for everyone to see.  Lets cross our fingers for more creative contests and campaigns in coming months and see if they will aid Pinterest in moving up from third place

Join The Conversation

  • Cyberlink Media's picture
    Apr 19 Posted 5 years ago Cyberlink Media

    Womens Inspiration Day by KOTEX is also quite good.

  • Apr 13 Posted 5 years ago Wendy Janzen

    One issue that companies running contests like this need to think about is that Pinternet (and the internet in general) is accessed by people all around the world.  This shouldn't even need to be stated, but contests that require someone to physically attend a specific place are silly, and most contests are limited to residents of the US, but you need to really check the fine print to find that out.  If you want to limit it like that fine, but make it obvious!

  • Apr 13 Posted 5 years ago LaurenProctor

    Peugeout Panama is also running an interesting puzzle-based contest depicting featured car models.  Users are encouraged to follow @peugeotpanama on Pinterest and then search for missing images to complete various car model puzzles via boards titled Peugeot Puzzle Contest.

    The campaign is somewhat complicated and it looks like only a few puzzles have been solved successfully since the contest launched (a month or so back I think).  

    It's interesting to watch as these campaigns develop and earn press impressions, but I still can't help but believe the women's magazines who are getting so much inbound traffic to their brand sites as a result of using Pinterest exactly as it was intended are the real winners so far.

  • Apr 13 Posted 5 years ago ldnwickless

    Does everything need to be about money?  Why can't pinterest be left alone.

  • Outre Fulsome's picture
    Apr 12 Posted 5 years ago Outre Fulsome

    Pinterest is not about you marketers.

    It's about users sharing what the user WANTS to share.

    Stop ruining everything you touch with your attitude that we are there to be used.

    In reality we HATE you. We don't want to be used.

    You people talking this up, creating "buzz" are ruining it.

    Yeah, I'm not happy about the "buzz" about marketing campaigns on Pinterest. It's breaking Pinterest for users because every 2nd follow is now some fake account that steals images from others to be "clickable" and uses url shorteners to mask their affiliate marketing links.

    Pinterest needs to step it up to get rid of these FALSE accounts whose "pins" all link to only one site. There are no recipes, DIYs, interesting articles, etc, just crap and more crap and some are sites my Comodo Dragon browser warns me about. (I check people who follow me so I'm not following back some creepy marketer)

    Pinterest needs to ban url shorteners as the average users does not need them. Also the reporting utility NEEDS to be expanded. Additionally they need to become more transparent with community forums and contact info - both are completely missing.

    And YOU people need to stop making "buzz" as though it's some child's game. Get out of kindergarten and act professional for all's sake.

  • kimrandall's picture
    Apr 11 Posted 5 years ago kimrandall

    I've had a lot of fun and seen a lot of success with different techniques and campaigns for clients on Pinterest. It's fun to reach a new audience and to be challenged by a new platform. Here's one fun contest that has ended already, but you'll see how we spun the them March Madness into a fun contest on Pinterest.

  • Apr 11 Posted 5 years ago gingermiller313

    Thanks for the insight!  I've had a lot of my clients ask how they can use Pinterest in a social media campaign and these contests offer some good examples.  Great article! 

  • Apr 11 Posted 5 years ago Bob Bedi

    Good information here Christianna.  Thanks for digging in to this.   A lot of us see the untapped potential for Pinterest as a way of connecting with customers and prospects.  It's helpful to see the attempts some companies are making to make that happen.

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