Why Pinterest Does Not Work for Tourism

Why Pinterest Does Not Work for Tourism


For many, a reason to interact with the outside world.  For the rest of us, a new marketing headache that will not go away.

What started out as a simple online scrapbook has quickly turned into the social network of the moment.  Everyone seems to be in love with the little website that could, building it up as the next Facebook, or at least the next great marketing opportunity.

Before you request the invite, let’s review why this new social site is not the answer for your destination marketing strategy.

Why Pinterest Does Not Work for Tourism


The hype machine seems to be working overtime on Pinterest.  Perhaps it is simply because the pundits have exhausted their arsenal of Top 10 Marketing Tricks for Facebook lists, or because anything Pinterest is pure link bait.

Either way, the jump from friendly social sharing site to marketing plan requirement has been quick.  So quick that one wonders about the impact of this rapid popularity.  In a pure case of anecdotal research, many of my veteran Pinterest peers have already expressed concern and disdain towards the influx of brands on their boards.

While some are recommending a smash and grab mentality for Pinterest, it might be wise to consider the reasons for another social channel…rather than following the crowd.


Yeah, as in you have more important things to do.  As Forrester Analyst Darika Ahrens correctly points out, issues around multiscreen marketing, customisation, local-mobile, effective media buying and attribution should all come before Pinterest-mania.

Let’s not even bring up the fact that Google still drives the majority of all destination digital traffic.

Ah, but those things are just not as sexy as a good pin.


Pinterest demands quality visual content.  While it is easy (perhaps too easy) to start a pinboard with a few images, long-term success will be determined by the strength of your content development.

With so many users pinning photos of your destination, your content, images, graphics, etc., cannot be average.  That content already exists.  Exceptional content is the key to success.

Which means you need a content development / photography development plan.  Unfortunately, most DMOs simply do not generate the type, quality and quantity of photography required to feed the Pinterest beast.

It wants more than your 6 skyline photos.


So, you can cross Pinterest off your to-do list, right?

Not so fast.

While the social darling will certainly face challenges during this period of growth, they are challenges that can be solved.

Especially with quality content.

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