The social media landscape is constantly evolving. Pinterest was launched in 2010, with slow and steady growth until March 2011, when an iPhone app for Pinterest was released, helping the site to grow exponentially.
Marketers take note; early adopters on this site were women, not geeks! Fast forward to today, it’s one of the top 100 web sites, delivering significant traffic to brands and business, with advertisers starting to take note via embedded ads.
What is it? Pinterest is a social media platform that enables brands, businesses and/or individuals to create and collate images online and share with other online via “pinboards.” Think of Pinterest as more than a beautiful ecosystem of carefully collated images of furniture, clothes, books, objects – just about anything imaginable.
You or your brand are sharing content with a vibrant community of consumers who can raise your popularity on the site and drive a tremendous amount of traffic back to it. Retailers take note – this is a great content marketing platform. Pinterest is at this moment free and there are no hard costs directly associated with this marketing platform and your account.
Pinterest is Facebook without all of the comments and speaking of Facebook, you will want to connect your Pinterest account to Facebook and Twitter – syndicating and repurposing content is always a good thing to do on the social web. We recommend incorporating Pinterest as a component of your content marketing strategy.
Pinboards: Pinboards are categories into which users divide images. These are great for a content marketing strategy.
Pinning: Done by uploading content directly to Pinterest or using a browser plug-in that enables you to “button pin” an image to your Pinterest account.
Repinning: When a user discover content they like they use a Pin It button to copy the image to their own account – this is analogous to a Facebook like.
Commenting: A Pinterest user can comment on content (images), which in turn drives more interaction with your content and brand.
Support for: iPhone (Android is on the way) and should install a Pin It Button on your site so visitors will share your content and a Follow Me to drive social engagement.
Our Top Ten Pinterest Marketing Recommendations
1) Just like any other Social Media Profile (LinkedIn comes to mind) complete your Pinterest Profile: feature your business name on your profile (or change this after it is set up), complete the About section, which shows up under your picture, connect your Pinterest account with Twitter and Facebook (good content marketing strategy), add your web site URL.
2) Pin content steadily, not in huge bursts to maximize Pinterest content exposure and to drive social engagement. This reflects good content marketing strategy.
3) Develop creative and thought provoking board names – these drive content engagement when shared, although you have limited amounts of spacing.
4) Tag other Pinterest users by pins utilizing their @usernames – not a great deal of this is being done and this should drive social connections on Pinterest.
5) Use Pinterest’s Source Your site to understand who is connecting with your content and sharing it. This can be invaluable as it gives you a metric to understand if your account and images are generating interest with this community. Also, use the Pinterest Popular link on your home page to research and understand what’s attracting pinners to engage with your brand and generate more of this type of content.
6) Comment on other Pinterest’s users content on an ongoing basis; this is social sharing and helps to drive social engagement. This is just like commenting on someone’s blog post; so, remember standard business etiquette when doing this.
7) Create event specific (sales, promotions) or holiday boards that let you celebrate the time of the year (think global, not just about U.S. holidays). These help to drive engagement with your Pinterest content and broader brand awareness.
8) Make sure you optimize your content properly for the Pinterest search engine by adding Keywords to titles and descriptions. Adding these drives your content marketing strategy - marketers take note – descriptions are optimum, but you want to use these for all of your images, just as you would on YouTube.
9) Where is your business based and what is the local time zone? We recommend using Pinterest during standard business hours (like Twitter). But, you may want to test different time periods to understand when maximum content sharing occurs. You can do this by checking your comments, repins, likes and referral traffic hitting your web site (or other social profiles) by assessing web site stats and adjusting accordingly.
10) Get featured in the Pinterest Gift Section by adding prices to your items by typing in the $ sign followed by the individual item’s price in the Pin’s description – your in essence creating a retails sales presence right on Pinterest.
Pinterest is easy to use, which has probably contributed to its rapid adoption by millions of users, small business and even larger brands. You can create an account in about 5-10 minutes and add images by Pinning, adding the latter to a Pinboard and provide a caption. Content marketing strategy:
Providing authoritative how to photos: these will generate referral traffic and can drive overall use engagement with consumers via Pinterest.
Creating viral content drives Branding: Pinterest marketing is just like any other social media platform – the more viral (shared and referred) your content is, the broader your market exposure and brand awareness.
Virtual storefront: As we pointed out earlier, adding prices to your images is a great way to a certain extent; sell your products right on Pinterest. If you are in the design business, fashion, retailing and/or small business that resells any kind of product this is a great way to inform and engage with this community.
Building a presence on this high growth platform: Pinterest may or may not be like Facebook 6-8 years ago. It’s growing rapidly and establishing a presence on this platform is another great content marketing strategy. Time will tell if it continues to grow and/or how the platform is developed to drive better user engagement moving forward. Content marketers be aware, there are soft costs for this platform like any other social media platform – requiring labor and time to build a presence. If your brand or business is in retail or B2C focused you should establish a presence on the Pinterest platform. Highly recommended content marketing strategy!
Pinterest is a superb component of any content marketing strategy – we rate it a 9 out of 10 stars.