As the hot new kid on the social block, Pinterest is gathering pace and attention from marketers and rightly so. Earlier in 2012 it hit the 10 million user mark, the fastest website ever to do so.
But how can you leverage the platform for your business? We’ve put together the following tips for how you can make Pinterest work for you…
Create a profile
First thing’s first. Pinterest is out of invite-only mode now so you can go and set up a profile including the name and email associated with your account, add a location and website and then add a brief description of your brand.
Add a Pinterest “Follow” and/or “Pin It” Button
These follow buttons act similarly to any linked image on your site. They can be used inline with your content, or as part of a sidebar.
Start to build the structure of your Pinterest profile by adding a few boards. These can be related to your products and topics associated with your brand. Also think about boards which go beyond the normal such as more lifestyle based which will enhance the brand image.
Add to your pins and board
Using a variety of original pins and curated pins add to your Pinterest profile as you would for other social networks. Its important to keep a good balance of curated content with your own, so become part of the community and share from others.
Make your pin descriptions work hard by including £ to products, include any web links back to your own site or the original source, and tag sources by names on Pinterest (via @name).
As with any use of social media, it is easy to smell a rat so be yourself or transparent if you act on behalf of your brand. This will also preserve Pinterest as a site in the long term.
Follow, pin, repin, comment, like. Repeat.
Honour the source of your pins
Conduct good pin etiquette by including a link reference for any curated content. Also leave a comment on a pin you notice that is in-correctly sourced. Finding the original source is always preferable to a secondary source such as Image Search or a blog entry.
Use a Pin It Bookmarklet
So you can easily post as you move around the web, add Pinterest’s browser bookmarklet. A video on how to install it is below…
Use keywords and hashtags
In descriptions for a pin you can add keywords which may be more likely to be found by other #hashtags to do this such as #cars #winter #chocolate #tech but don’t over-use these either.
Allow others to contribute to your boards
For any of your existing followers you can allow other users to contribute to your boards to make them feel a part of your brand and profile. This can work particularly well for competitions where you give a prize for the best pin. Even create a VIP board for those customers you want to shout about by re-pinning their content on this specific board.
Keep track of your Pinterest on the move by downloading the smartphone and tablet apps. Remember that a significant number of people use social networks over the weekend, so think about being active outside of the normal Mon-Fri working week.
Use good quality photos
Pinterest overstates the impact of pictures ahead of other media through its design therefore it is important whenever pinning to use high-quality photos.
Check your analytics
Use analytics to view all Pinterest referrals to see where you are receiving traffic from and what’s working best and optimise your future activity.
Create interest by asking a question
As with other social networks, generate participation. Ask your follows to add a caption to a picture, or simply “tell us what you think” of a new product. As commenting is very simple on Pinterest, this is a good place to have a two-way dialogue with your customers.
When adding a board title or description to a pin think with your SEO hat on – identify a phrase or word that you wish to target and be realistic; don’t chose one so competitive you have very little chance of ranking for. Even try using Google’s Keyword Popularity tool for ideas. Once you’ve created a board, add a few pins and add a few #hashtags to the description.
Convince the business
If you need to justify the resources required to build a presence on Pinterest, here’s a handy infographic which can arm you with a number of stats to convince the powers that be this is a wise strategy…
That’s it, all you need to know to get up and running on Pinterest. So what are you waiting for? If there are any other tips you’d like to share, please comment on this article below. And while you’re on Pinterest, come and say hello to Harkable.