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Digital Industry Inspiration The Drum Awards

Stop interrupting, start inspiring: allowing creativity to flourish on Pinterest


By Jenni Baker, Senior Editor

September 8, 2021 | 6 min read

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The Drum and Pinterest have partnered for the second year running to launch a free-to-enter category at The Drum Awards for Digital Industries (DADIs) that will celebrate the best and most inspiring uses of Pinterest, whether as part of an integrated campaign or standalone made for Pinterest approach.

Stop interrupting, start inspiring: search underway to award the ‘Best Use of Pinterest’

Stop interrupting, start inspiring: search underway to award the ‘Best Use of Pinterest’

Building on the success of last year’s winner GymShark – which leveraged Pinterest’s unique audience insights to deliver a smart strategy that brought it closer to the community of ‘Pinners’ at a pivotal time during the Covid-19 lockdowns – brands have been exploring new, innovative ways that tap into the audience insights and unlock the creative opportunities available on the platform over the past year, according to Visha Naul, director of business marketing EMEA at Pinterest.

The entry criteria for the category this year remained quite broad in order to celebrate all types of work submitted by brands and agencies – whether it has been to tell a full funnel strategic story or a one-off creative storytelling activation.

Judges will reward work that includes any of the following criteria: using Pinterest as a full-funnel solution (from awareness to conversion); use of insights and trends data; use of creative ad formats; best moment inspired; newcomer to Pinterest; use of inspiration/storytelling; or always-on strategy/long-term strategy (minimum of two years).

“Many [brands and agencies] wouldn’t know about these campaigns and the creative uses of the platform unless we showcase this brilliant work,” says Naul. “I believe awards are a really great way to allow the industry to collect lots of knowledge, inspiration and ideas of what are the best-in-class examples. It only felt right to try and shine a light on who these different brands could be and give people the opportunity to really understand what the opportunities are.”

“It’s been a tough year for the industry and we’re now in a position of trying to celebrate great work,” says Naul. “This is the year to say ‘yes’. Be proud of the work that you deliver and celebrate it. I’m hoping that we’ll be able to show the judges some smart strategic ideas that really delivered impact. Here’s your chance to teach them something new.”

Your audience is here – and they’re probably looking for you

On Pinterest, 97% of its top searches are unbranded, giving brands an opportunity to add to, and enhance, the user experience. As an audience-first platform, its recent Inspiration Nation study spoke to users directly to show brands that they have a place on Pinterest as well.

“We want to stay true to our proposition for brands to stop interrupting and start inspiring on our platform and really help brands understand that we’re all very different, which means your digital advertising has to be very different,” says Naul.

Over the past year, Pinterest has launched new product features to make shopping even easier, including Shoppable Ads and Shopping List. It has also made several enhancements by testing augmented reality (AR) capabilities and inked a Shopify partnership that expanded to 27 new countries, giving businesses of all sizes the opportunity to compete in the same space.

What makes Pinterest truly unique from other platforms is its commercially-minded audience, who use the platform from the moment of inspiration right through to purchase. They move down the decision funnel in a way that is related to them, not anybody else, making the choices they want. People on Pinterest are dictating their own journey – just as they do in real life when walking down a high street or choosing which TV show to watch.

“It’s a place where a very decision-oriented type of audience goes – they arrive on the platform thinking a little bit about what they’re looking for, showing up with intent, ready to make decisions and a positive mindset to be able to do that,” says Naul. “That really shows in the searches we get. The very nature of Pinterest is that it’s set up to be this personal experience, not really a social experience.”

Rich data at your fingertips

The question for brands is: where do I match my customer in that journey? “That’s where audience insights play such an important role,” says Naul. “Once you figure out what your audience is and what they’re looking for, it’s about matching that up with your strategies in a smart way. There are immersive ways of engaging with your audience and accessing rich data at your fingertips.”

Pinterest has also turned its focus to creators with the launch of Idea Pins, stitching together evergreen static and video content to bring unique stories to consumers and brands. It's leading the way in relation to policy to protect its status as a user-first platform. This also includes the Creator Code to protect and elevate creators from underrepresented communities, while maintaining Pinterest's content values to remain a positive and inspiring space.

“You need to have trust as a digital platform,” says Naul. “Trust is where your creativity can flourish because you’re talking to people in the way they want to be spoken to. Customers are savvy and people know what they want. It’s not so much about retargeting anymore. It’s about understanding your audience and delivering what they want, where they want it.”

Winners for the ‘Best Use of Pinterest’ awards category at The Drum Awards for Digital Industries (DADIs) will be announced soon.

Digital Industry Inspiration The Drum Awards

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