A beach wrap by Victoria’s Secret is one the most pinned images on Pinterest this year. Despite that, Victoria’s Secret got minimal traffic since the image that went viral wasn’t actually on their site. A considerable amount can be learned by this popular pin.
The most popular pin of the year?
There is no way to determine the most popular pin on Pinterest. No leaderboard or official release from Pinterest exists on the topic. But I can say that I have seen this image pinned more than any other pin by the people I follow on @free; three times more than the closest pin. And I have seen it pinned over a hundred times in the past two month. Just when I think there is no way that that it can get pinned again, it does. Despite the popularity of the pin, I wasn’t able to find the actual product until @KC_Laura answered my request for information on Twitter.
The image below on the left is a single product shot from Victoria’s Secrets’ site. The image below on the right is five of the different product photos (all on the Victoria’s Secret site) placed together vertically.
If Victoria’s Secret would have taken the time to put together the images they paid to have taken and placed them one after another in a vertical manner, a number of people would have pinned it, and I believe it would have still gone viral. Yes, some pinners would pin it without linking back. Yes, scammers would have caught on to the popular image and used it to divert traffic (they did this anyway). But by providing this image as a photo booth style vertical image, they would have gotten considerable traffic. Pinners are generally fair and want to provide a relevent link. Since this image didn’t exist on the Victoria’s Secret website, pinners couldn’t pin it and by the time they saw the image, they likely didn’t know where to look.
I spent a half hour going through pins of this image and none of them link back to Victoria’s Secret”s site. Most traffic went to other image sites (Google Images, Tumblr, etc) and in a few case the link went to a Pinterest 404 error since a scammer had been using it.
Not too late for Victoria’s Secret and other businesses to take advantage.
It goes without saying that Victoria’s Secret should have a Pinterest account. They currently don’t. Attractive models wearing seasonal styles and lingerie are very pinnable. Victoria’s Secret also invests in having photographers take multiple photographs of the same model, and those images should be combined and placed on the the product pages in order to provide “original source” pin options. Their shoppers are on Pinterest in overwhelming numbers, and they pin many product images without any prompting. By being on Pinterest, they can be the ones who introduce apparel to their audience, and thus control where the links go.
The case of this viral pin also show that brands need to at least monitor Pinterest. Monitoring lets businesses learn what products are popular, but also the image format that people like best.
All business interested in Pinterest should consider providing pictures that are photo booth style. Multiple images can tell a story, and when they are arranged vertically, they command more space in people’s feeds. Something to consider the next time you are putting together images of products or even just images to go with a blog post.