February 27, 2012 3 Comments
If your business relies on driving traffic to your website to increase sales consider joining Pinterest. If you’re not familiar with Pinterest, it is a social network where users to share their interests by “pinning” images or videos to their own or friend’s boards. Remember how you decorated your locker in high school? Well now you can share those clippings on Pinterest and use them to drive traffic to your website. Of all the social networks this one is truly the easiest to get set up and running.
Getting started on Pinterest
- Go to Pinterest.com and request an invite. The response is usually fast, within one day or so.
- Add the “Pin it” button to your browser
- Start Pinning
Connect and Brand your Account
Currently Pinterest allows users to connect using either a Facebook or Twitter account. Note to businesses: the option to share your Pinterest activity is not available to Facebook pages, only personal profiles. When you set up your Pinterest account be sure to connect with your business Twitter account to allow easy sharing to your Twitter followers.
Brand your Pinterest account the same way you’ve branded your other social accounts. Under the settings tab add your website, a keyword rich description and your standard social profile picture.
Create and Build your Boards
Just as with any social network it is important to flesh out your content before actively seeking out followers. Explore the platform and pin images you like and those that represent the type of content your customers will find interesting. It probably goes without say, but make sure your images are visually appealing so users will want to share them. Go through your website using the “Pin it” button and organize your interesting images onto a board. This is where the platform becomes a powerful traffic driver to your site. Users will be able to click through that image from Pinterest right back to your website. Keep this in mind when adding future images to your site or blog. Make sure they are pinnable and interesting to Pinterest users!
Build your Pinterest Following
Start following users you hope will follow you back. Follow some of the Pinterest power users so you can see how they’re leveraging the network. Mashable, Etsy and Folk Magazine (debuted November 2011) are good resources for inspiration. You can see the beginnings of my boards at Carmine Media here. Pin a few images every day for maximum exposure. The network is growing fast and you’ll be surprised by how quickly folks start repinning your images. Cross connect by adding a Pinterest follow button to your website so visits know you’re using the platform.
Become a Pinterest Thought Leader
By posting your own and curating other’s content you can become a subject matter expert on the topics most interesting to your customers. For example, if you’re a real estate broker, pin images of beautifully staged rooms so sellers can get ideas for home staging. If you’re a pet groomer, pin images of cute animals (there are plenty to be found) and show dogs being groomed. Make sure to add links to your image descriptions, use keyword rich text and know that Pinterest supports the use of hashtags. Remember too, as with any other social network there are rules of engagement known as Pin Etiquette . Make sure to check that out.
The best way to get a handle on using Pinterest for business is to try it yourself. Sign up for a personal account, connect it to your Facebook page and start pinning images that inspire you. You’ll see quickly how all that activity can translate into buzz around your brand.
How are you using Pinterest for business? Share your thoughts, ideas, and any boards you love here with me.