There’s nothing like being the new most popular kid on the social networking block and right now Pinterest has that spot. Pinterest was launched in 2010 as a place where members can post (or as Pinterest calls it) “pin” their favorite photos, videos or images of a certain topic onto a pinboard. It has become so popular that every week a new exponential number of users join up.
Similar to other social media, users can follow their friend’s boards, “like” their boards or even share them on Facebook and Twitter. Pins can also be emailed or embedded into a website or blog, making it more available to more users. It’s a place where users can collect and show their passion – “organize and share the things you love” (Pinterest.com). It’s nice to do, its soothing, it’s a great way to lose a few hours.
Before you can pin, you must become a member first
Since it’s an invitation-only site, you can request an invite from Pinterest or have a friend (who is already a member) invite you. Either way, you’ll be notified by email when your membership has been accepted. Just make sure that you register your account with your business email so that you can connect through your business Twitter account (you cannot connect through Facebook’s business pages).
Another thing to remember is to keep your “Hide your Pinterest profile from search engines” checked to “Off” so your profile can be searched by users on the web. Plus, keep these five rules in mind:
- Be respectful to others
- Give proper credit to your source
- Be careful about over self-promoting
- Don’t “pin” objectionable material
- Be selective when giving feedback
Now you can start pinning
Once you’ve established your account, add the “Pin it” button to your company’s website. Since Pinterest is a way to share your company’s culture (in addition to promoting your products), here are some tips that can help you get the most out of your pinboard and to increase followers:
- Create a user-focused pinboard to welcome followers. Identify your top “pinner” and ask them to share what they like most about your brand.
- View pinboards of your followers to learn more about their interests, then post images that will bring your followers back to your board.
- Use clear and vibrant images (mixed with videos) of a theme that your company wants to convey. Your bookstore can take your followers to far-off places that sometimes only exist in the plot of a novel. Share images of the beaches of Fiji or imaginary planets from distant galaxies.
- Whatever type of images you use, write a description that emphasises your company’s keywords.
- Generate leads and drive followers back to your website – you can reward your followers with an offer and encourage them to visit frequently.
Because staying engaged to your followers is vital, thank them for pinning your items and encourage feedback. You can ask your followers to pin your new products that they like, invite them to your next promotional event or simply ask them to share their own images with you. You can even have daily pins that generate repeat visitors.
Knowing how to harness the fullest potential of Pinterest (plus understanding the rules) takes experienced social network marketers. It takes a bit of time to get the hang of it. We suggest using it for yourself first and then start using is for your company.