David-Michel Davies is the Executive Director of The Webby Awards, the leading international award honoring Internet excellence. David-Michel spoke with Beauty Insider about which beauty companies best engage in Pinterest, slated to be one of the hottest social media networks in 2013. Below, a summary of what he said.

With fashion and style rounding out the top three categories pinned on Pinterest, it should come as no surprise that the beauty industry is eager to jump on board with the emerging social network. It’s a very visual medium, and that’s huge with beauty and cosmetics. What we see happening in terms of best practices from beauty companies on Pinterest boils down to two different types of marketing: direct deals to drive sales and brand and content marketing. The brand and content aspect helps build brand community and acts almost like a news organization or “service journalism.” Then, there are the direct deals that drive sales. Here are some examples:

1. One thing we’re seeing a lot of is trend casting. That’s when a brand uses its prominence (new science, colors, ingredients) to be at the forefront of what is the latest on the market. By being a curator and showcasing this knowledge, brands can become a “voice of authority” on the subject, ensuring they are the go-to source for all things beauty. One company that does that well is Sephora

with its Trending Now board.

2. Zoya, a natural nail brand, pins lots of trendy nail art on Pinterest. One of today’s biggest beauty trends, nail artists and fans alike flock to Zoya’s boards to share their own creations and to be inspired. As a leading international beauty brand, this practice helps establish Zoya at the forefront of nail trends.

3. A brand’s boards reinforce its mission and core values. The Body Shop, which has always been about cruelty-free standards, has boards that reflect this ideology. With boards titled “100% Vegetarian”, “Against Animal Testing” and “Values,” The Body Shop ensures that their followers are getting a true sense of the brand’s principles.

4. Rounding out brand and client marketing are “how-totutorials. NARS leads the pack with mutli-media, step-by-step breakdowns of beauty looks. Reminiscent of the old-school practice of going to the makeup counter and getting tips from beauty advisors, Pinterest brings this practice up to date with digitally savvy.

5. Promotional deals: There are a lot of contests on Pinterest, like “Pin It To Win It!” This is when a brand or company asks its followers to create a board or pin and contribute it to a designated—at most times themed—board. It’s a popular method that helps garner followers. Beyond contests, a lot of brands leverage Pinterest to promote sales and seasonal deals or gift guides. This is something Birchbox did recently with its boards dedicated to costume and makeup ideas for Halloween.