While Pinterest is the latest cool social media toy in the shop, and I usually warn about not diving on the new shiny toy just because it is a new shiny toy, Pinterest is worth looking at for your small business.
What is Pinterest?
Pinterest is a virtual pinboard that allows you to pin images from all over the web to share with others.
Why Use Pinterest
Pinterest’s growth is truly incredible and is only going to keep breaking records over the short term. Over the long term, it will be one of the main social websites that people use. In other words, it is here to stay.
Why Does it Work?
It works because it is visual.
People are visual creatures by their very nature and Pinterest feeds into that by creating an easy-to-use site that is all about the visuals.
As an aside, this is the same reason why image posts get a lot more responses on Facebook as well.
How Does it Work?
Let’s say that you are surfing the web and come across an outfit that you really like. You can immediately Pin that image to one of your Boards on Pinterest with a click of a button (either on the site itself or via your browser) with a link back to the site for your future reference.
It’s basically a visual bookmarking tool. One that you can share with everyone.
From a business point of view, the visitor just created a link back to your website, which has two primary functions:
- It has created another organic link back to your website that Google will like, and
- It has created a link back to your website that will drive other people to visit.
One thing you need to remember is that all board are public, so whatever you Pin there can be seen by everyone. Which, for businesses, is a good thing!
How can you get the most out of Pinterest for your Site?
Pinterest is delivering some really big traffic to websites, but to maximize this there are a few things you need to do:
- Pin your own blog posts
Create a special Board for this if you like or spread them throughout various Boards – perhaps create Boards that are the same as your blog categories
- Create Boards that are interesting to your customers and audience
This might sound like a an obvious thing to say, but when creating your Boards think about what your customers (or potential customers) would want
- Get Pinning – there is nothing worse than seeing an empty Board
Don’t create a Board and then not fill it with Pins. This looks unprofessional and is actually pretty annoying
- Fill in your profile
Please do this! Tell us about you and/or your business. Why are you on Pinterest?
- Study what people are re-pinning from your Boards and Pin more of that
Keep track of what people are interested in. You can easily do this via the email alerts
- Thank people for re-pinning and commenting on your Pins
Get social! Start communicating with people by leaving comments and liking their Pins. If someone re-Pins one of your Pins thank them! Did they like one of your Pins? Ask them what they liked about it
- Re-Pin and comment on other people’s Pins and follow them or their Boards
Again, get social!
- Connect Pinterest to your other social networks & your website
When filling out your profile make sure you link to your other social networks and your website so people can find out more about you
- Add Pin buttons on your website
Use the Pinterest buttons to add to your website to make it easier for others to Pin you
- Start using fantastic & relevant images on your blog posts
Think carefully about what images you use for your blog posts (you are using images, aren’t you?). And have a look for some infographics you could use too
- Turn on those email notifications
Let Pinterest tell you when people are liking and re-Pinning you
- Don’t hide your Pinterest profile from search engines
Let Google use your popularity on Pinterest to index your website
- Use the text area to add keywords and to start a conversation
When you Pin something, you get 485 characters to have a conversation – use them! The search function within Pinterest is pretty poor at the moment, but you can bet it will get better in the near future so it is important to name your Boards, Pins and your Account well.
Quality of Traffic Generated
One area no one is really talking about is the quality of the traffic generated by Pinterest. Sure, they come to your site, but are they hanging around?
This is something you can easily see by using Google Analytics, but it is worth looking at as while Pinterest may be right for some businesses, it may not work for all.
There is a fantastic article about this on Copyblogger.
Pinterest is a great source of traffic and can be a great social network for your business, but remember to develop a strategy on how you are going to utilize it, and how you will convert all those new visitors you will receive.
Are you using Pinterest? Want an invite? Comment down below or Facebook me.