January 08, 2015
Case Study

Inbound Marketing: Pinterest-based strategy leads to 77% new site traffic

SUMMARY: When your product is highly visual, finding a platform that is most conducive for showcasing those products is essential. Publish content on the wrong platform for the wrong audience, and you could end up hitting a brick wall.

Murals Wallpaper leveraged Pinterest as a way to generate new visitors to its online store as well as engage with highly motivated prospects in the research phase of interior decorating transformations. See how the brand successfully created engaging Pinterest boards, managed a blog and leveraged collaborative boards that led to more than 5% of site sales conversions originating from Pinterest.
by Erin Hogg, Reporter

Murals Wallpaper produces high-quality, digitally printed and "totally bespoke" wallpaper. Offering pre-made prints as well as providing the option for customers to upload their own images, this U.K.-based company has a goal to become one of Europe's leading customized wallpaper companies, according to Michael Palmer, Digital Marketing Manager, Murals Wallpaper.

Social media plays a large role in the company's strategy for reaching new audiences, particularly Pinterest. But, it didn't start that way.


"Initially, Pinterest was used as an internal ideas board. When our designers were coming up with new designs for wallpaper, they'd use Pinterest to find their patterns they liked," Palmer said.

It wasn't until 2013 when the team realized more and more traffic was coming from Pinterest to the website.

"We realized it was time to get a strategy in place to use Pinterest as a marketing platform," Palmer explained.


Murals Wallpaper needed a way to take what content it was posting on Pinterest and turn it into a way to generate traffic to the site.

Palmer and the team at Murals Wallpaper began to think of Pinterest not just as a way of discovering new trends in interior design, but as a way to drive customers to the Murals Wallpaper store and generate conversions from highly interested prospects.


According to Mashable, 68.2% of Pinterest users are women, and Murals Wallpaper has seen that reflected in its customer base as well.

"We found that 65% of our customers are female, and that's the reason why Pinterest is such a good platform for us. With that in mind, it really allows us to cater to our buying audience," Palmer said.

Step #1. Design Pinterest boards to mimic site categories

Through some research of their own, the team discovered that 67% of people who use Pinterest use it as a consumer.

"Whereas on Facebook or Twitter, people are using it to contact their friends to speak to them, people on Pinterest tend to be looking for ideas and are in the research stage of the buying process," Palmer said.
From this research, the team decided that the Pinterest boards for Murals Wallpaper should mimic the website's product categories.

This way, Palmer explained, it serves as an "external category-level site for people who have even heard of Murals Wallpaper or haven't been on our website before."

The team took categories of wallpaper designs on the site, such as car wallpaper or football wallpaper, and have dedicated Pinterest boards, one for each category.

If a new category of wallpapers is added to the website, that category also gets its own board on Pinterest.

Step #2. Publish blog content

According to Palmer, Murals Wallpaper sets out to create two high-quality pieces of content on the blog each month.

For example, in November, Palmer created a blog post featuring some newly released wallpapers with a NASA space theme.

"We thought Pinterest would be the perfect place to tell people about them. As well as putting the pins on the space board, we also created a range of blog articles that promoted the space wallpapers and told people about each image," Palmer said.

Palmer reached out to experts in the field, particularly bloggers interested in space, and had detailed descriptions built into each image description.

In each blog post, Palmer is cognizant of making sure to tie into the Pinterest board in the content.

"We include large calls-to-action to check out of Pinterest page in the hope that people will look at their followers on Pinterest and be more inclined to see the stuff what we are posting and maybe repin themselves and get in people's news feeds," Palmer said.

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Through keyword research, Palmer can also evaluate what designs are trending on social media. For example, Palmer discovered there was a trend for grungy effect wallpaper, which led to more products and pins added to cater to that demand.

"Using keyword research, we found that there was a large amount of traffic but low competition for the keyword 'brick wallpaper room ideas,'" he said.

With this in mind, Palmer created a Pinterest board on brick wallpaper room ideas and filled it with more than 50 images of different brick effect walls so people in the buying stage would view them and be directed to the Murals Wallpaper site.

"As well as people finding us on Pinterest, we created a brick wallpaper blog article that is now sitting 11th on search engine results pages. We're getting a lot of traffic from that, and we're also seeing an increase of followers on Pinterest as a result," Palmer said.

Step #3. Manage other social media platforms

Any new content that gets created for Murals Wallpaper based on new product lines is also shared via Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. However, with so much traffic and engagement on Pinterest, Palmer has much of the posts on other social media directing followers to the Pinterest boards as well as blog content on the site.

To keep organized, Palmer plans out content two months in advance and promotes product launches and hot trends.

"Then, I create lots of content that supports these images. We move on the next two months, looking at the next batch of products we'll have coming out," he explained.

Palmer uses a tool to schedule all of the social posts surrounding new content on the blog, which leaves him "free to start going about the next content we need created," he said.

In the near future, the team is looking to bring on new employees to make the process of content creation and promotion easier.

From his efforts, Palmer explained that good communication within the company is key to success when it comes to running content promotions.

"Clear communication is vitally important just so that you know what is happening and what you need to promote, and you've got a clear message running through every department," he said.

Having a clear plan in place for each social media strategy, such as defining the voice for Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest, is essential "because you've got far different crowds on each of those sites."

"There are quite a few groups dedicated to interior designers on LinkedIn, and we know they are they are people that buy wallpaper regularly. We contribute more think-piece articles on there," he said.

On LinkedIn, Murals Wallpaper identified and joined interior design groups and has since been active members in these communities.

"We ensure we don’t ever spam the groups by purely promoting our products. Instead, we listen and contribute to people's discussions and make sure that all of our posts … provide value to the group," Palmer explained.

On Facebook and Twitter, Palmer adds more content featuring images of customers showcasing their newly decorated rooms using Murals Wallpaper products.

Step #4. Leverage collaborative boards

After performing a competitive analysis on Murals Wallpaper's competitors, the team discovered a new tactic to rake in more Pinterest followers and get them back to the site: collaborative boards.

In these boards, pinners may request access from the collaborative board's owner to allow them to pin content of their own.

Murals Wallpaper then reached out to owners of collaborative boards that would be relevant to the brand. These included boards like "Beautiful Interiors."

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The collaborative board "Beautiful Interiors" that Murals Wallpaper joined has nearly 15,000 followers, giving the brand more exposure to prospects interested in interior design.

The team then messaged the board's owner to request permission to join the board and begin posting content.

"In your pitch, it's really helpful to set the parameters by stating that you will publish no more than five pins per day and that all pins will be relevant and of high quality," Palmer explained.

Also, he noted it is worth leveraging that the collaborative board will gain additional exposure and followers should the board owner agree, providing value for both parties.

Since leveraging collaborative boards, Murals Wallpaper experienced a 764% lift in impressions on Pinterest.


"So many people who use Pinterest are looking when they know they want to buy something, be that a new suit, be that wallpaper, be that furniture. Your job is to supply people what they want on any social channel," Palmer explained.

Since implementing this Pinterest strategy of uploading new pins and boards to the platform regularly, maintaining a blog full of rich content and leveraging collaborative boards, the team has noted that 77% of new site traffic is coming from Pinterest. This shows that the platform is generating interest and exposure for the company.

Also, the team has discovered that 5.13% of sales conversions can be attributed to customers coming from Pinterest.

Palmer has also noted that Pinterest users are spending more time on the Murals Wallpaper site versus other visitors.

"If you're in the position that you have quite visual products, give people visual representations of the things they are shopping for, and you will soon see the fruits of your labor," Palmer explained.

In the future, Murals Wallpaper is aiming to continue growing its Pinterest following and leverage it in email marketing as well.

"Once we get a new customer, they will receive a welcome email, a confirmation email, and all of our emails are going to try to push people to Pinterest as well," he said.

Also, the team is seeking to gain high-profile bloggers in the interior design industry to take over Pinterest boards to drive more awareness. On product pages, the team will also be implementing the ability to share the wallpaper on Pinterest simply by hovering over the product image.

Creative Samples

  1. Large blog CTA for Pinterest

  2. Collaborative board


Murals Wallpaper

Related Resources

A/B Testing: How to improve already effective marketing (and win a ticket to Email Summit in Vegas)

Email Marketing: Pinterest-focused email campaign draws a 124% increase in social sharing

Social Media Marketing: An inside look at Neiman Marcus' Pinterest and blogger relations strategies

Social Email Marketing: Contest adds 200% more Pinterest followers and engagement

Social Media Integration: Holiday campaign increases Kahlúa's Pinterest followers 1,432%

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