In this interview series, I ask my favourite travel brands about their use of Pinterest for their tourism business. How did they get started and what have they found to be successful on the platform?
Let’s get right into it with no other than Pinterest Rockstar Lonely Planet! With almost 700.000 followers, over 80 boards and more than 17.500 pins, if there is one place to go for travel inspiration, it’s here.
Pinterest User Lonely Planet
1. When did Lonely Planet first start using Pinterest?
We started using Pinterest back in 2011 to inspire and enable travellers all around the globe. There are so many amazing sights in the world that Pinterest is a great visual platform for us to keep the travel bug alive in the pinning community!
2. Which board on your account is your favourite?
We have lots of different boards but one of my personal favourites would be Tastes of Thailand which is run exclusively by one of our Lonely Planet Pathfinders, Elizabeth Kelsey Bradley. Based in Thailand, she pins some delicious looking pics of local Thai dishes – it never fails to make me feel hungry!
Our Travel Tips and Knowledge board is also a favourite, it’s a great go-to board if you’re looking for some travel inspiration.
3. What is the most popular Pin on Lonely Planet’s account?
This ‘I’m going to see the world’ travel quote pin is our all-star pin. I think it’s popular because it’s inspiring, motivational and a quote that many travellers (like us LPers) live by!
4. Where do you find great content to share on Pinterest?
Primarily we look to our local editors and authors out on the road to pin new articles and eye-catching travel photography. We also look to our Pathfinders community for great content and love to see travel videos made by LP fans which are often sent directly to us.
5. What is your best tip for using Pinterest for travel businesses?
Pin inspiring content that’s relevant to your brand and ethos but most importantly, content that is useful to your followers. Pin regularly, but not too much – you have to strike a balance between being seen in someone’s feed and flooding someone’s feed.
6. Did you run any specific Pinterest campaigns/contests yet?
We did run a competition based on the Pan American Highway, which was an idea from one of our destination editors. We asked our community to share photos, stories and tips from their Pan Am trips which we pinned to a dedicated board.
We were pleased with the results – the board has 539,000 followers and we also saw a great level of traffic to the supporting article. It’s also an example of how staffers from all over the business contribute to Lonely Planet’s social activities.
7. Which other travel-related Pinterest accounts would you recommend us following?
There are so many great pinners out there! Erin Freedman is a great pinner and her Outdoor Pursuits board makes us want to reach for our passports immediately! Lots of our Lonely Planet Pathfinders have great Pinterest boards too, including Lucy Laucht, Holistic Writer and of course, The Travel Tester!
8. Where do you believe Pinterest will go in the future -specifically for tourism brands?
In the future I think Pinterest is going to deliver more than just pins and create more offline experiences that seamlessly integrate with online activity.
We’ve already seen hints of this with large scale brands like Topshop and Coca Cola, but there’s potential for it to be explored by the travel and tourism industry much more, particularly as pin capabilities continue to evolve.
With many thanks to Lonely Planet’s Social Communications Manager Maria McKenzie (@MazMcKenzie) for taking the time to answer these questions. Dream.Pin.Go. is always looking for interesting travel brands to interview about their use of Pinterest for business. Interested? E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org