Expert's Opinion

Pinning Hopes on Pinterest

By Cheryl Swanson, Toniq | September 25, 2012

Cheryl Swanson wonders if Pinterest is a beauty & fashion go-to or the ultimate market research tool for brands?

Pinterest has allowed everyone to become a curator of beauty, fashion, art, design, food, DIY crafts – whatever your fancy. As of June 2012, there were nearly 20 million unique visitors to the site based on, while ComScore puts that number closer to 31.2 million. And based on RJMetrics, 80% of pins are re-pins, meaning that users are actually watching the content on the site and interacting with other users. Unlike Twitter, where only about 1.4% of tweets are retweeted, Pinterest is less about self-proclamation in 140 characters or less, but about crowdsourcing content that is actually capturing the attention of visitors with proof in the percentage of re-pins. Beauty, fashion, food, and DIY crafts tend to be some of the most popular categories of interest on the site, mostly due to the fact that women outnumber men on Pinterest by 91% according to Socially Challenged by Maureen Lippe.

There has been so much focus on how brands can utilize Pinterest in promoting and selling products, but how about using Pinterest as the ultimate market research tool? You know whom the consumer is based on each user’s profile, and you can see what is hot right now based on the number of comments, re-pins, and just by clicking on the “popular” tab. However, with the right strategic forward thinking, you can forecast the trends to come.

Here are a few trends we see happening and will happen based on Pinterest.

Trend: Nail art is here to stay.

Trend Forecast: Girls are doing it themselves. Most nail art pins are linked to a “how-to” page. HBA companies should capitalize on the DIY aspect of nail art with home kits, unique polishes and finishes, seasonal colors, variety of brush sizes, top coats that create new effects, stencils, etc. There’s a pretty fierce competitive show of DIY nail art on Pinterest.

Trend: Hair - healthy, long, loose braids, perfect up-dos.

Trend Forecast: Women will spend on their hair if the product claims are what they seek. There will be more of a blurring of mass and prestige hair care brands due mostly to distribution. We will see more prestige hair care brands available alongside mass brands at drug and grocery stores. Prestige brands will become more competitively priced while mass brands will redesign packaging to look more prestige.

Trend: Natural beauty and wellness.

Trend Forecast: There will be an increasing demand for natural, organic and 100% pure products. Serums and pure oils will replace many of the more complicated products we use on our face and body. We will hear more about arnica and pure argan and pomegranate oils. Homeopathy will become more mainstream, but brands will use copy that is more consumer-friendly.

Trend: Food, the ultimate paradox on Pinterest!

Trend Forecast: On one hand you have pins of gluttony and indulgence and on the other hand you have food pins for health and wellness. But if you actually take a closer look, those deliciously decadent pictures of strawberry shortcakes and towering chocolate brownies usually have a recipe to show how it’s made to be healthy. We will definitely see an increase in healthier alternatives and more people choosing the path of organic and becoming part-time vegetarians and vegans. Interestingly, most of the top food pins are vegetarian.

Trend: DIY Organization

Trend Forecast: Unique ways to organize everything from your closet to under the sink, the pantry to your junk drawer is offered up in pins. We are noticing how people are using, reusing, up-cycling and re-purposing everyday items into organizational tools. A couple favorites are saving wine corks to make your own cork board, wrapping shoe boxes in cloth to create re-useable bins, and gluing old Scrabble pieces together to create coasters. We will see more brands taking note of this consumer behavior and offer ideas on ways to recycle or reuse the product and its packaging. Levi’s woven tag inside their jeans asks you to care for the planet and either recycle or donate your denim. And most grocery bags are printed with a message to re-use or recycle. We think brands will get more creative and re-purposing ideas will become more common on packages.


We will continue to track these along with other trends in upcoming articles. If you would like to know more about Toniq, please email us at or tweet us @brandeffervesce. And check out for daily trends and inspiration.

Cheryl Swanson
Toniq LLC Brand EffervescenceTM
Email: - Tel: 212-755-2929 x218 Web:
Toniq is a brand strategy firm dedicated to creating "brand effervescence." Ms. Swanson and her staff bring life, energy and dimension to brands by blending traditional marketing with anthropology, sociology, the psychology of symbolism and innovative consumer research techniques.