Colorful recipe share or minimalist individualism!? Part I

Last week I gave you a short impression on both Pinterest and Tumblr and we checked some general differences.

Today let’s have a closer look on their differences and in what way they are more or less suitable for various purposes, determining the types of users and businesses practiced on these platforms.

To remind you of the basic difference, Pinterest and Tumblr have different focuses. On they explain that Pinterest is primarily a link sharing site where people post things that they  found interesting on the internet whereas Tumblr is more of a microblogging site where you upload things that interest you and say your thoughts about certain issues.

So it is not unusual that this main difference has some influence on the usability of both platforms. Let’s see what impacts there are.

The business perspective

From a business’ perspective, it is essential that platform such as Pinterest or Tumblr have potential for marketing strategies. Therefore target group, brand appearance and functionality play an important role.

Target groups

Concerning the target group, Anindya mentions that Pinterest has a majority of female users, where as Tumblr’s target audience is mostly youngsters. The same phenomenon is witnessed by

 If yours is a lifestyle brand or a brand targeted to women between the ages of 25 and 44, Pinterest is a great place for your brand to establish a presence and connect with that audience. If your brand is targeted to people between the ages of 18 and 25, then Tumblr is a great place to put down roots.

Also, the numbers talk for themselves;  Pinterest has grown over 400% from September to December 2011 ( with 58% of users being women. The graphics support this statement as well.

But with this high number of female users, Pinterest has an image of a recipe share and wedding planning platform, which is not always good for marketing purposes. On top of that,several online communities talk about “the Pinterest gender gap” indicating the lack of male users on Pinterest. Male users seem to be scared of Pinterest, there is even a list of 125 reasons dedicated to it.

Mary Elizabeth Williams argues with the following statement:

In its mission statement, Pinterest says its raison d’être is “to connect everyone in the world through the ‘things’ they find interesting.” But when you’re enticing “people all over the world” to “Redecorate your home!,” “Plan a wedding!,” “Find your style!” and “Save your recipes!,” you might as well announce, “Guys, it’s like when she takes you towel shopping at Bed Bath and Beyond.”

In some way reasonable that women in their mid 20s are more attracted to Pinterest.

On the other hand Tumblr does not have this kind of problem. Blogging is suitable for both male and female users, for this reason the target group seems much broader.

Depending on what product you want to market and which target group you want to reach, Pinterest or Tumblr offer different possibilities to do so.

Brand appearance

When thinking about brand appearance, it is observable that Pinterest is mainly visual. So perfect for large ad campaign pictures or product pictures, people will then re-pin and spread your product for free. Also, a lot of people use Pinterest as a to-buy- list, which is good because almost all pins are linked to the original website (maybe your own website where people will directly buy your products!).

John P. shares his thoughts:

I have been seeing more people using Pinterest as a way of showing off products that they want to buy. Some are more like visual daydreams, showing the house they would love if they only had the money for it. But the boards are also being used to create wardrobes, design ideas and shopping wish lists.

This fact of collecting nice things on Pinterest is often ridiculed because it is very often displaying daydreams  and desires of people:

Moreover, it is counted negative for Pinterest that the actual pin often shadows the person or producer behind it.

Tumblr on the other hand also allows audio or text content, which is more cases better for promotion than just pictures; and is directly connected to you, the publisher. believes that Pinterest discourages self-promotion, whereas Tumblr doesn’t frown upon it. It is easier to promote oneself explicitly on Tumblr than on Pinterest. They also suggest that it might be a good idea to drive traffic from Pinterest to your Tumblr blog, where you actively promote your products.

Here again, which way of promotion you choose is depending on your target group. Like phases it, offering content in a variety of ways so a broad audience can pick and choose how they want to consume your content and interact with your brand is important. Not everyone likes Tumblr, and not everyone likes Pinterest.



About Mai

My name is Mai, I'm 23 years old and currently studying in Berlin. I am especially interested in different cultures, art, design and like to be surrounded by beautiful things. This is my first time blogging, I will try to provide many interesting and diverse topics and inspirations for you to read. I'm open for discussions, feedback and ideas from other bloggers, so don't be shy if there are any questions or suggestions. Have fun exploring!
This entry was posted in Aesthetics, Business, Entertainment and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Colorful recipe share or minimalist individualism!? Part I

  1. Nicpic says:

    Hi Mai,
    as I’ve already told you in other comments I am a huge fan of your writing! This post is no exception.
    I have to admit that I did not read all of your latest work concerning Pinterest and Tumblr so the short resume you include in the beginning was immensely helpful to me and is a great way of bringing your readers up to speed. Moreover you manage to create a great mixture of quotations, information and own thoughts, which render your post very dynamic and interesting!
    In addition by talking about the business perspective of these platforms your post has an obvious appeal to your target group (managers to be).What other perspectives are you going to talk about next week?
    I found it fascinating that Pinterest is mostly dominated by females. In your post you argue that this is not always good for marketing purposes but shouldn’t marketing be easier because of this very specific target group? I always thought that if you know your audience, then you would know exactly what kind of marketing you need and what kind of advertisements will be successful.
    Because you’re such a good writer I only have two things I would like to suggest.
    Firstly I recommend you proof read your post again before publishing. There are a few small mistakes (for example the space between “20s” and “are” is missing and in the paragraph before your last picture you used “is” instead of “in”). But these should be easy enough to eliminate 😉
    And secondly have you considered using h2 or h3 instead of bold for structuring your posts? More specifically I would try to make “The business perspective” stand out more, since “target groups” and “Brand appearence” are further subcategories of it.
    But these are only small suggestions to an otherwise great post! Well done Mai, I’m looking forward to part II!
    Cheers Nicky

    • Mai says:

      Thank you for your suggestions. I just quickly checked some spelling and corrected them. Also, I changed my bold into h2. Thanks for this advise 🙂
      Now to answer your question about the target group. Of course you are right, marketing is easier when you exactly know your target group. What I was thinking about is the fact that marketing is first of all for attracting as many people as possible, which is difficult when the target is already limited, isn’t it? Surely, now that it is known that mainly female use Pinterest, you can specify your marketing strategy, but there is a limitation of broad target from the beginning on.
      Next week I try to look at some aspects from user’s perspective. Hope you like it as well 🙂

  2. mirkalilka says:

    Just like last week I enjoyed reading your post and I was eager to find out more about Pinterest and Tumblr. Viewing and analyzing both platforms from a business perspective was a good idea because usually you wouldn’t see it from that perspective and as far as the potential for marketing strategies is concerned, knowing your target group is extremely helpful. But are there actually any brands that already use Pinterest or Tumblr for marketing purposes or is it just in theory?
    You wrote that Pinterest often shadows the person or the producer behind it. Do you have any famous examples? Since Pinterest seems to be the perfect place for planning your wedding, there might be some wedding planners who decided to use this opportune moment. The balance between quotations and opinions that you paraphrased is really good, but you provided much more information about Pinterest than about Tumblr which you could explain more in your next post.
    I liked the audience demographics for Pinterest,but how is it with Tumblr? Is it really balanced?

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