Target announced a strategic partnership yesterday, not with a fellow company – but with select Pinterest influencers. The move is just one in a recent slew of attempts by established market presences to connect directly with potential consumers via innovative social media platforms.
Pinterest, which launched in early 2010, has seen exponential growth each of the past four years, and while many experts believe Twitter is reaching its plateau – and scoff at Facebook as an efficient marketing tool – the platform, which allows users to share and organize high-res images taken from the web or generated originally, isn’t showing any signs of slowing down. This could be a healthy dose of beginner’s luck, but it’s more likely Pinterest has struck genuine gold by leveling the playing field – not only between low and high-profile users, but between those users and established brands as well.
Take Joy Cho, for instance. A designer and social media influencer, Cho has cultivated quite the following– more than 13 million Pinterest users. It’s no wonder she was on Target’s radar for their Pinterest campaign, nor is it a surprise they chose her to launch it. Cho’s line in the ‘Party with Pinners’ stunt will feature modestly-priced garden-party ware – lanterns, apparel, cups, and more, all of which will appear in-store branded with a “Pinterest” logo for easy identification. This move, which Target also uses outside the campaign to draw eyes toward the most popular items on the platform, could be the first of its kind, and is a remarkably simple but innovative implementation of mutually beneficial cross-branding.
On the one hand, Target gains immediate access to all of Cho’s followers as potential customers, while also gleaning the benefits of her grassroots style expertise. On the other hand, Cho gets a promotion that will surely see a boost in her own sales as well. So the question is – who’s getting the better end of the bargain? Our bet, believe it or not, is on Target.
The campaign, to launch soon, will feature two other designers – Kate Arends of Wit & Delight and Jan Halvarson of Poppy Talk. Be on the lookout, and happy pinning.