Pinterest has rapidly risen up through the social media ranks and is now a major player among social networking websites. Businesses that first dismissed Pinterest as being yet another social media site that should just be ignored need to sit up and think again. And many organisations that have cast aside Pinterest as being a fad maybe need to look at the figures and reconsider. The website brings excellent potential for marketers to draw attention to businesses, and in addition the site is offering even greater potential for returns on investment than some of the bigger players. If you are running a social business, Pinterest can be an excellent resource. In fact, looking at the figures, Marla Tabaka (2014) of Inc reports that as discovered by Sprout Insights:
“Pinterest’s share of social media referrals soared from .68 percent to a whopping 26 percent in just one year, generating more than 400 percent more revenue per click than Twitter, and 27 percent more than Facebook.”
It is also worth knowing that as Tabaka (2014) explains, people that click through from Pinterest advertisements are considerably more likely to buy than those that click through from other social networking sites. Indeed, from Pinterest, 10 percent of shoppers referred are more likely to actually make a purchase. This means that Pinterest may have smaller numbers of users right now than the social media greats of Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, but advertising funds invested is money well spent.
As with all social media marketing activities, one of the challenges is that too many businesses take the approach of “pitching” to their Pinterest followers. This is an approach to be avoided. Other types of approaches should be used to gain engagement from potential customers. It is important to realise that unlike some other social media websites like, for example, LinkedIn, on Pinterest people are on the website for entertainment purposes. They are not interested in being sold to. Rather they want their attention to be grabbed by creative and educational pins. This means that businesses thinking of working with Pinterest need to make sure that fascinating facts, figures and also humour are all a very necessary part of marketing via Pinterest. Given the highly visual nature of this particular social media medium a certain level of visual appeal and an ability to “stimulate the imagination” is also important to gain the attention of followers. Otherwise they will be fickle and click away from your pins.Guide To Pinterest For Social Business (part 1) Intelligenthq
What are the main steps to be taken with Pinterest:
1. Open a business account
The first step to be taken with Pinterest is creating a business account. Some businesses made the mistake of creating a personal account when starting out on Pinterest, but this can easily changed to a business account, and there are good reasons for doing so. One such reason is the benefit of good analytics that help you to assess the success or otherwise of what you are doing on the site. Other business features are also provided specifically to help organisations to drive success via Pinterest. Another initial step that businesses need to take is that of downloading the Pinterest button from a page called “goodies” and putting it on your business website.
2. Plan a strategy on how to use pinterest
Before just going ahead and starting to pin anything up, it is best to have a game plan. Tabaka (2014) explains that some of the most interesting pins that businesses can post are those that inform about the industry in which they work. For example, infographics that outline consumer behaviour or about the particular product or service can be interesting for the users. Developing an infographic about a particular business problem such as time keeping might be an option. Checklists are also a good option to generate interest. An example provided is that of a company that provides products for new babies creating a helpful checklist that could be used by new parents that they could use. Another option might be a travel company providing a packing list for those considering going to certain destinations.
3. Think about being visually appealing
Being visually appealing is (almost) everything on Pinterest and Julia Campbell (2014) of Maximize Social Business explains how this can be done with either free tools, or some resources that are low cost. Campbell’s personal favourite is Canva.com which she argues is easy to use and offers good graphics. While some of the templates provided cost $1, most are free. This tool allows the creation of presentations, social media graphics and blogs, all of which can grab the attention of users. Quozio.com is another good option. This tool formats text that you put into it in an interesting and appealing way. There are many templates to choose from. Meanwhile Pinstamatic.com provides the chance to create good graphics, calendars, location maps and photos. Pinstamatic allow you, if you enter the URL of a website in the box provided and Pinstamatic, to take a snapshot of the website that can be pinned to whatever pin board you would like to use.
There are also many other tools. Pinwords.com provides beautiful text for images; UseChisel.com allows the ability to “write thoughts on photos”; Recitethis.com meanwhile provides the chance to “turn a quote into a masterpiece.
Besides the tools that Campbell recommends you can use your own imagination and photoshop, if you are considering when starting a Pinterest campaign.
You can use as well Pinterest´s helpful templates for free. It also offers infographic creators that can be helpful if you do not have the graphical skills to do this for yourself.
Guide to Pinterest For Social Businesses Part 2
Paula Newton is a business writer, editor and management consultant with extensive experience writing and consulting for both start-ups and long established companies. She has ten years management and leadership experience gained at BSkyB in London and Viva Travel Guides in Quito, Ecuador, giving her a depth of insight into innovation in international business. With an MBA from the University of Hull and many years of experience running her own business consultancy, Paula’s background allows her to connect with a diverse range of clients, including cutting edge technology and web-based start-ups but also multinationals in need of assistance. Paula has played a defining role in shaping organizational strategy for a wide range of different organizations, including for-profit, NGOs and charities. Paula has also served on the Board of Directors for the South American Explorers Club in Quito, Ecuador.