How to use Pinterest for business: 7 handy tips
Following on from my exceptionally awesome article last week on whether you should be using Pinterest for business, here are a few tips to help you actually get out there and do so.
Obviously it is going to depend on what your business is as to how you will use Pinterest, but here are a few hints:
1) Start a pin board that reflects your products/services – and get creative if you need to. For example if you have a really cool and innovative product, instead of being really specific so there will just be that pin on the board, you could call your board something like ‘Awesome innovations’ and not only pin your product/s on there, but also browse through Pinterest to find others and pin them too. If you sell clothes, don’t just create a pin for ‘dresses’ but instead you could do something like ‘spring dresses’ or ‘pretty (or cute girly) dresses’ or something that is a little more descriptive. Don’t forget that Pinterest is all about visual and words can paint a picture too! Inspire people to want to follow your boards.
2) Be generous and reciprocal. Following on from point 1), make sure you don’t only pin your own stuff to your boards and nothing else – if you can help it. The more you go out and find other interesting content that relates at least somewhat to your brand, the more you will find people will connect, like and repin you. That being said if you sell shoes I’m not suggesting you go out and pin other stores’ shoes to your boards, but you could have a board about ‘funky accessories’ and pin these – fashion relates to your shoes and makes you more than one dimensional! You could also create a board for inspiring quotes and pin these to widen your appeal.
3) For the love of god, make sure your images are the best they can be. This is a no-brainer. It’s so easy to take a sneaky pic of something with a phone in bad lighting and decide that’s the best effort you’re willing to make. Well, forget Pinterest then. You really, really need to make sure you are taking or choosing the very best images to pin to reflect your brand/products/services. The better the image, the more repins and likes it will get (as well as potential clicks and sales!). Just like with any traditional marketing campaign, the same goes for using bright colours and eye-catching tactics. You want people to notice your images and you want them to like them enough to share.
4) Humanise your brand. Pinterest is another social network – the emphasis being on social. Once again it’s not a place to be corporate. Get people to connect with your brand by making it personal, not professional. Pin pics of your offices, your staff, your kitchen or anything to bring your (current or potential) clients closer to your company. Try to get them to feel like they already know you – and they like you!
5) Include relevant text/logos on your pictures if appropriate. If you are putting up pics of your new arrival shoes, why not stick a unobtrusive logo and even price in the corner? Just another way to boost your brand awareness and hopefully sales!
6) Integrate Pinterest to your website too. Have the follow me/us on Pinterest button placed prominently on your site, but even more importantly have the ‘pin it’ buttons alongside your products on there as well. If you have a blog, allow people to pin your articles (as I do!) – make it easy for people to pin your stuff, because if you don’t the chances are they won’t.
7) Keep an eye on what is being pinned from your site. This is a neat little trick you can do to see who is pinning what from your site. Head to pinterest.com/source/yourwebsite.com and you can see what is happening. For example, check out who is pinning articles from The Social Skinny This is really helpful because you can not only be sure to connect with (and potentially thank) those who are pinning your content (and potentially offer them a discount in future for being such great advocates?) but you can also check out what is most popular, and make sure it’s featured prominently on your site.
Those seven tips should help you get started on Pinterest, but just to help the inspiration, here’s a link to some of the few Pinterest marketing campaigns that have been run so far.
Also a brand I think is using it well – G Adventures use Pinterest to promote their trips to Antarctica, which is a brilliant strategy – you can check out their boards here: http://pinterest.com/gadventures/m-s-expedition/
Lastly just one more tip – always remember that people are browsing Pinterest to find interesting things. They are looking for good ideas, pretty pictures, inspiring quotes and things that are out of the ordinary. So give it to them! It’s not about flooding boards with boring or istock images of your products/brands/services. So make sure you know what you’re doing and have the right content before you set up your business on Pinterest.