The Minimalist’s Guide to Pinterest


Aishwarya Krishnamurthy

June 16, 2015 4 min read

Updated on May 2, 2017

“What do you do on Pinterest? I just don’t get it…”

As an avid Pinterest user, I get asked that question quite often. It seems there are quite a few people who don’t really understand Pinterest, how to use it or even what to use it for. Listen, Pinterest is awesome – it’s a great place to find inspiration, it’s perfect for bookmarking content that I can read later, and as a consumer it’s easier to find new products, find similar products, or if money’s tight save the product so I can find it easily when it’s pay day.

What started as a digital corkboard is now one of the top contenders for social selling as research finds that even though the aesthetically pleasing social network may not have the monthly user numbers to rival Facebook or Twitter, their purchase click through rate rivals, and even outperforms those behemoths. But the image heavy site may be a little overwhelming when it comes to the sheer volume of images – How much content is too much?

Abstract painter Ad Reinhardt had this to say of minimalism and the value of a reductive approach to art:

The more stuff in it, the busier the work of art, the worse it is. More is less. Less is more.” 

We’re not big fans of content overload, so we came up with The Minimalist’s Guide to Pinterest.

  1.        Campaign Boards

As a Pinterest enthusiast, I know that if a board has too much going on – too many themes or too many pins – I quickly lose interest, and instead of scrolling down a particular board for too long, I leave. The magic of Pinterest lies in the grouping of similar themed content in one board – which sounds an awful lot like how a campaign is organized. For example – The launch of a new product warrants its own board, a new season’s fashion line deserves its own board.

Anthropologie does a great job of sorting through their content and categorizing their boards in the most relevant way for their potential customers. Instead of having a single board for interiors, they have multiple boards in the home décor space, each catering to a specific style of design. So if I was only interested in decorating an outdoor space, I wouldn’t waste my time parsing through kitchen décor, or office related furnishings.


Another company that organizes their content to create the most relevant experience for a user is MasterCard – their #Priceless campaign is divided into multiple city specific boards, so a potential customer could find all the offers in their city with minimum distraction.

  1.        Delete obsolete boards

We found one brand that had found an efficient way of increasing engagement as well as keeping their profiles free of outdated boards. Australian brand Intrepid Travel organized a “Polar Travel Sale”, a time-constrained promotion of travel deals, and created an eponymous board, as well as a Polar Adventure Travel board.


Both boards engaged well on Pinterest, but after the time period of the sale, the brand simply deleted the Sale board. By doing this, they avoided confusing users with out-of-date offers and kept their profile relevant and clean.

Pinterest Boards don’t need to be permanent. By deleting time constrained boards and periodically clearing clutter, potential subscribers will see relevant and timeless content, instead of being distracted by a Sale or Offer that is no longer valid.

  1.        Be relevant – Not everyone needs a Puppy Board

One common misconception about Pinterest, IMHO, is the general rule that any brand can have any category of content. If you’re a realtor, a board about the latest fashion may be a great way to get a couple more re-pins or favorites, but in the long run won’t do much for your business. It’s great to have highly shareable content on your boards, but brands should remember to tie this content back to their brand, or particular products or services.

For example, quotes are very popular on Pinterest – between beautiful messages and stunning typography, users can pin quotes on style, health, lyrics, memorable lines from movies and TV shows. However, this doesn’t mean that all brands need to be pinning quotes – especially if they’re not related to their product itself. Nike Women does a great job of pinning beautiful images of fitness related content on their ‘Motivation’ board.


This board is chock full of quotes from brand ambassadors, and messages that any person interested in fitness or looking for tips and motivation would love. In these messages – the brand messaging is clear so even though the point of the image is to inspire and motivate, there is an obvious brand recall as well.

Finally, the coup de grace is that when a user clicks on each image, they are redirected to a landing page on the website, where potential customers are only a couple of clicks away from purchase. And at the end of the day – that’s the ultimate ROI.

We found these insights from Pinterest data in the Unmetric platform. If you’d like a behind the scenes look at the content and campaign strategies of your competitors on social media – could we interest you in a free trial?


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