360 Degree Media Group Blog

Business Marketing: Instagram Versus Pinterest

Posted by Amy Baker on Sep 30, 2014, 12:00:00 AM

Social networking is the biggest thing to happen to marketing since the introduction of television. The question that comes up when you jump into the realm of social media for business, however, is "which network should I join?" When it comes to image websites there are two paths you can go: Instagram marketing or Pinterest marketing. 

The two major image based social networks: Instagram & Pinterest

The first thing you need to ask yourself before joining a social network is, do I know why I have to be on a network? If you don’t know why you need to be there, it is hard to be competitive.

There are three reasons you should not join a network and those are:

  • Everyone else is doing it.
  • I am seeing everyone else talk about it everywhere.
  • Our competitors are on it.

The bottom line is that while you want to stay up to date, jumping onto a new social network just because everyone else is doing it is not a great marketing plan. Not every social media outlet will work for you, which is why its great to have options.

If you know that you want a presence with a network and you know that you are doing it to expand your brand and find a better reach, then you are doing it for the right reasons. Once you know you are joining a social network for the right reasons, you can look at the data to decide which network is going to be the best for you and your business.

Instagram vs Pinterest resized 600

Between the two big photo-sharing sites, lets look at some of the demographics you should keep in mind when deciding which one to choose:

  • Pinterest is a female-dominated platform (in the USA) with 70% of Pinterest users reported as female
  • Pinterest’s main age demographic is 18-34 (56% of users) which mirrors Instagram’s though slightly smaller
  • Pinterest has an older demographic with 30% of Pinterest Users falling into the 35-54 demographic and 6% of Pinterest users are 55+ vs only 8% of Pinterest Users falling into the 12-17 age demographic

Instagrams demographics:

  • Instagram is more balanced between genders with males representing 45% of Instagram users
  • Instagram’s main age demographic is 18-34 (67% of users), which mirrors Pinterest’s, though slightly larger in size
  • Instagram’s audience leans younger with 20% of Instagram users falling into the 12-17 demographic and 0% of users falling into the 55+ category
  • Instagram also shows a significantly smaller audience in the 35-54 demographic, with only 13% of its audience falling into that demographic

Choose the one that goes best with your target audience. However, if you have a product that could go with other demographics, you will want to think of the differences in the platforms themselves.

To understand the differences, all you really have to know is what the platforms are meant for.

Pinterest is a virtual bulletin board that lets users share inspiring images along with direct links to websites such as Etsy. When shared, the images are called “pins” that can be placed on “boards,”  which are usually themed and customized by users for any topic. Pinterest is all about curating images. If starting a Pinterest page doesn't seem to match your business model, but you still want to advertise on the platform, you can consider Pinterest advertising.

Instagram is a free iPhone and Android photo sharing application that lets users share photos with their friends. You simply take photos, then you can select filters to add flair to your images. Instagram is the ideal tool to transform normal photos into works of art. Instagram is all about creating images.

Once you know if you would prefer to create images or curate images, you will know which platform will suit your brand better. Pinterest also tends to be easier to share and comment, but on Instagram, you can get more direct like feedback from hearts and still get comments as well.

Both platforms have a solid niche and work well. It is nearly impossible to say which one is better because they serve quite different purposes. You just need to know which one would work better for your marketing purposes. If you can't choose, the great thing about social media marketing is that you don’t have to pick; you can brand with both.

Are you looking for a little help with your social media? Download your free copy of our social media checklist by clicking the link below:

Social Media for Business Checklist

Topics: Instagram marketing, social media marketing, Instagram versus pinterest, Pinterest Marketing, social media for business