Curalate is a marketing and analytics platform specifically for visual content. Analytics currently cover Pinterest and Instagram. It also includes tools to engage audiences on multiple platforms and to create and run contests and promotions across multiple online channels simultaneously.
Average range is approximately $1,000 to $2,000 per month.
Jon Lombardo, who was leader of GE's Social Media Center of Excellence at the time of this interview, has been using Curalate since the spring of 2012. Lombardo will join LinkedIn this month.
How do you use it?
Curalate launched right as Pinterest was emerging as a huge platform. We looked at several vendors because we needed insight into the visual Web, and we liked Curalate's product and team best.
It is commonly accepted that images perform better than other content, and we didn't have any insight on Pinterest performances before we started using Curalate. So we use it to figure out what content is performing well on the platform. We can look at our content and at other brands' content. You can also schedule pins, and we use it in that way to manage content.
Once you log on, there are a number of tabs. We primarily use the engagement tab and top content tab. The top content tab shows what you put up and what's doing best. The engagement tab shows engagement on our content and allows us to see other comments that aren't necessarily about content we've posted but that are about GE products.
We're now starting to use it for content insights on Instagram, and we're thinking about how we might use it more broadly for the platform.
Since GE was an early client, the team are able to reach out directly to our account representative when we have an issue. We can solve a lot by email, but we'll do a screen share for a more serious issue or if we need education. We haven't really had that many issues.
How does it serve your business needs?
It's helping us quantify the impact of engagement on Pinterest or Instagram, and that's increasingly something all marketers need to be able to defend. Right now we're mainly looking at the traffic our content on Pinterest and Instagram drives to our website and how much of that traffic is converting.
Pinterest is currently building links to go from pictures to websites, which will also be helpful. When you pin something, it says a lot about how much you want a product. There's so much intent there, and it would make sense for Pinterest to take users through from a pin to a site and get some of that affiliate revenue.
Curalate has really helped us figure out visual content strategy. For example, we've learned that images that have quotations on them do really well, and we've applied the insight across all platforms – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram. We've also learned that really long pins do much better. These are very tactical, prescriptive things that start to inform what kind of things you do.
It also allows us to engage with brand advocates and even brand critics.
We haven't done this, but some people are looking at images that get pinned a lot and then using those images on their websites or in contest. If you know people really like certain images, it makes sense to use them.
You can also look at specific ways people are describing your products in pins and make sure you mirror that on your website. Our appliances team is doing this.
How does it integrate with your existing infrastructure from an IT standpoint?
It's Web-based. It can be integrated with Google Analytics, and we pull data from it into our internal metrics dashboard as well.
What are the main benefits?
It gives us good insight into the visual Web – where it is now and where it's going – that we wouldn't have otherwise.
It's helping us drive engagement, and, ultimately, it will help us quantify ROI.
What are the main drawbacks?
It's still mostly a Pinterest platform.
What would you like to see improved/added?
I'd like to see it cover more platforms – Tumblr, for example, is a very visual platform, and Facebook. It would be great to see it become a full service visual tool.
Piqora – provides an integrated marketing and analytics suite for Pinterest, Instagram, and Tumblr.
Nitrogram – offers an analytics and engagement platform for Instagram.
Olapic – a platform that provides tools to collect images and videos from social networks that companies can then display on their websites.