“Most Creative Pinterest Campaign” not exactly what it seems

Apr 2, 2012 | Branding, Digital

As you know, we’re huge fans of Pinterest and think this new(ish) social media platform can be utilized as a great marketing tool for certain brands, particularly those that target a female audience. This blog post was originally intended to show you this innovative Pinterest campaign from Kotex, executed by the Israeli agency, Smoyz (they’re the ones behind the cool Kleenex Facebook campaign we told you about a few months ago). But the post ended up taking a very different direction.

For the campaign entitled “Woman’s Inspiration Day,” Kotex/Smoyz targeted 50 “influential” female Pinterest users, studied their boards and then made handcrafted gifts for those users based on their pins.

The results? According to Smoyz, “almost 100% of the women posted about gifts” on Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, leading to 2,284 interactions and 694,853 total impressions, making this a very successful—albeit time-consuming—campaign.

Sounds great, right? Well here’s where we hit a little snag. We wanted to grab some screenshots of these women’s Pinterest accounts in order to show the gifts that they received and the viral effects of the campaign. So Meg put on her glasses and squinted her eyes and tried to find some of these women via a screenshot of Smoyz’s video. Much harder than it sounds, considering the names have been blurred.

We deciphered seven women’s names and located them on Pinterest. The average number of pins between them was 30 (one had 113 pins; one had 3 pins), which raised a red flag in our minds. How, exactly, had these pinners been identified as “influential”?

(For comparison, Meg has 650 pins and 160 followers; Mandy has 97 pins and 123 followers.)

Of those seven pinners we found, only four actually posted anything about their Kotex gift on Pinterest:

Finding an inspired way to connect with your target audience is always a winning campaign in our book. But imagine how much more successful this campaign could have been had they selected users who truly were “influencers,” who were fully invested in the Pinterest platform and who had a larger circle of followers.

While our little foray into investigative journalism doesn’t take away from the creativity of Smoyz and Kotex’s Pinterest campaign, we can’t help but be a little disappointed now that we’ve peeked behind the curtain.