Pinterest is steadily continuing its rise as a global social media superpower, which is why I decided to write this post on Pinterest marketing tips for small business.
One thing that almost everyone agrees on when it comes to Pinterest, is that it is pretty addictive.
Launched way back in March 2010, Pinterest quickly experienced a remarkable rise in popularity among people who aren’t normally early adopters.
By the end of 2011 TechCrunch reported that the sites visits had grown 40-fold from June to December 2011, to eleven million.
Why use Pinterest for business?
Today, ever more people are using this social network to market their own content, as well as to find and consume the content being created and displayed by other users.
Like many people, I tend to think of Pinterest as a social bookmarking tool. A site used to “pin” images found around the Web into categorised boards.
Pinterest CEO Ben Silbermann describes the company like this:
A catalog of ideas, that inspires users to go out and do that thing.
The audience is different from the major social networks because most people use it to find inspiration, whether they’re getting married, decorating their living-room, or looking for a recipe.
In other words, a lot of people are using the site to guide their buying decisions. If a user finds something they like, there is a good chance they may go on to make a purchase.
How Pinterest Works
In August 2012, the original ‘invite only’ policy was dropped, so that a request or an invitation was no longer required to join the site. In the same month, Pinterest launched their app for Android and iPad.
You can login using your Facebook or Google account for instant access. The user interface is extremely intuitive — so much so that I think the quickest way to “get it” is to join and from there it’s very self-explanatory.
Pinterest lets users save things they find on the web onto Pinboards using a browser add-on. It’s the digital version of clipping items out of a magazine and posting them onto a bulletin board.
The great part about this for marketers is that if somebody pins something off your site, you get a followed link.
A pin is an image or video, either from a website or uploaded by the user. A description can and always should be added to pins.
You can add a “Pin It” button into your browser to easily pin things you come across on the Internet.
You’re given a choice of which image to use from the page you are pinning.
You then select which board to add the pin to, and can add a description.
Pins can be organised on to boards by topic.
Pinterest starts users off with a pre-loaded selection of boards, but these can be deleted or renamed to suit.
Like other social networks, you can follow anyone, even if they aren’t following you.
You have the option to follow all of another user’s boards, or you can just select certain of their boards to follow.
Repins are the equivalent of retweets. Repinning is sharing an image pinned by someone you follow or found while browsing, and then adding it to one of your own boards.
You can edit the description when you repin something.
Repinning gives credit to the person who first pinned the image and source links stay on the pin no matter how many times it is repinned.
In 2017 the site retire the Like button on Pins.
Because there is both a Save button and a Like button, they believe that it hasn’t always been clear how they’re different.
After doing a bunch of research with Pinners, they found Pinterest is easier to understand without the Like button.
The Save button makes sure that the ideas you save are easy to get back to later.
You can organise Pins to different boards, as well as search for them. And every time you save something, Pinterest get a better idea of what you’re into and can show you better content.
“Buy It” Pin:
A Buy button was added in 2015, the “Buy It” pins appear next to the Pin It button. Tried and tested across other web platforms, the Buy button is hugely successful in getting people to act.
Shopify reports that the average purchase from Pinterest is $50, making it pretty lucrative for those that learn to use the Buy button effectively.
Marketing for Increased Sales
Pinterest may seem too niche to benefit all types of brands and whilst it is most suited to businesses with appealing visual content, clever marketers will still be able to find ways to use the social network.
If you’re still sitting on-the-fence and not quite sure how to use Pinterest for business marketing, or whether it might be suitable for your business, think about the following three reasons:
Why Use Pinterest For Business?
1. Get Seen
Pinterest goes a long way in levelling the playing field for smaller businesses that don’t have the budget to compete in search results.
Pinterest helps people find new brands/products/styles that they wouldn’t normally come across by typing keywords into a search engine.
If I search for trainers on Pinterest, I know I’ll find trendy options and smaller brands I’ve never heard of before. and if I search for trainers tomorrow, I’ll probably see something new because results are always changing as new pins are added.
2. Link Building
Whenever someone pins something from your site, it automatically pulls in both the image and a link from your site.
There is then the chance for that pin to be re-pinned multiple times, building up backlinks each time.
You can see if people are pinning things from your site by replacing “yoursitename.com” in this link with your URL: http://pinterest.com/source/yoursitename.com/
3. Brand Advocacy
If people love your products and they’re on Pinterest, they will not only pin your stuff, but they might dedicate an entire pin board to your brand.
Using Pinterest For Business Marketing
As soon as you have set up your new Pinterest account you should set about actioning these 12 Pinterest business tips:
1. Create Pin-able content and invest in great looking images
As a visual site; attractive or interesting images are the ones that get pinned and shared. Pins automatically link back to the image source.
2. Add ‘Pin It’ buttons to your site
Makes it quick and easy for people to share your content.
3. Consider using buyable Pins
The ‘Buy It’ pin appears next to the ‘Pin It’ button, once you click it you will be checked out. Checkout happens within the social bookmarking site or within the Pinterest app.
4. Be active in the community
It’s a social network and like always will reward interaction.
5. Create a profile
Include a keyword-rich description of your business and links to your website and social accounts. Always keep your profile public or it won’t appear in search results.
Keep in mind that Pinterest is both a search engine and a social network.
6. Share things relevant to your target audiences and products/services
But, don’t be overly self-promotional.
7. Include keywords within your image descriptions
This will help your content get found in searches on Pinterest.
8. Create multiple Pinboards
Based on specific topics, rather than placing all of your content in one board.
9. Assign a category to each Pinboard
Simply to help people find them.
10. Follow and interact with users
By repinning and commenting on things they share.
11. Add contributors
Pinterest lets you add contributors to your boards. If you have a relationship with a blogger or a leader in your industry who has accumulated a lot of followers, let them help you with your boards and get in front of their audience.
12. Measure Success With Pinterest Analytics
Pinterest have their own analytics where you can view basic metrics like impressions and the reach of your pins.
To get Pinterest Analytics, you’ll need a business account. If you’re already using a personal Pinterest account for your business, you can easily change it to a business account.
At the time of writing, Pinterest drives more traffic than Reddit, LinkedIn and Twitter combined. Do you know how much traffic your website receives from it? Pinterest Analytics will tell you.
Pinterest users are aspirational and are looking to be inspired every time they log in.
Instead of simply linking an image that eventually leads back to the product, marketers should seriously consider making use of buyable pins by putting products directly onto the platform.