Don't be under the impression that online scrapbooking platform Pinterest is only for amateurs and DIYers. If you are a small business owner who is looking to connect with potential client or drive sales, you shouldn't ignore Pinterest as the valuable marketing tool it is. Here are some Pinterest facts that are going to make you fall off your chair. No, really.
• Pinterest has over 70 million active users.
• Pinterest has 85 million unique visitors each month.
• Pinterest is valued at $3.8 billion as of late October 2013.
• Pinterest is the third most popular social work.
• Shoppers are 10% more likely to make a purchase if referred to a site from Pinterest
More than 1/5 of Facebook users are on Pinterest
Mind = blown?
Sure, Pinterest has had quite the reputation of being 'girly-girl' with almost 80% of users being female. But the way this platform is skewed towards change in the future, reveals that it has much to offer businesses of all kinds, right from service providers to retailers, and not just female-friendly content providers.
By being active on Pinterest, small businesses can improve their rankings on search engines like Bing or Google. Pinterest can also be used to share white papers, presentations, videos and articles. Anything that tells a story of the business works on Pinterest.
Here are 5 go-to tips on being a sensei master of Pinterest:
1. Ensure that your website is Pin-friendly
Downloadable 'Pin It' widgets allow users to "pin" items to their personal boards. Make sure you have a "Pin It" button on all content on your site to encourage users to engage with your website. These buttons are quite similar to the ones people use to share content on Facebook or tweet on Twitter. The 'Pin It' button can be an intelligent tool as it reveals what content is most popular with viewers online.
2. Organize your content into boards
With Pinterest, users can create themed boards. If you are small business on Pinterest, consider organising your content by theme, so that it is easier for other users to find and browse through your content. If you are a jewellery shop that specialises in diamonds, organise your boards so that you have a princess cut board, marquise board, round board, baguettes board etc.
3. Brand your pins
This may be a more time-consuming process, but branding the photos that you upload to Pinterest is worth the time and effort. If you have logos on your photos, users who find your photo interesting and want to share it, will end up inadvertently sharing your logo as well. There is a delicate balance to be achieved here. No one wants branding shoved in their face. Keep it subtle, like a logo in a corner. A watermark bang in the centre is sure to turn off Pinners faster than you can say 'Danny DeVito in a wet suit'.
4. Include information for shoppers
Pinterest users approach the platform with an intention to shop. To benefit from this finding, small businesses should include as much "shopper-friendly" information as possible. This means describing your product or service in a detailed manner, without going over the top. This increases the chances of piquing a 'Pinner's interest' (you see what we did there?) and lead them to your website to make purchases.
5. Engage Pinners
As difficult as it might seem to do, small businesses need to spend at least an hour on social media every day, dividing that time between platforms such as Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook. Use that time to become active in the online community in a sincere way. You could consider answering users' questions, repinning relevant content to your boards, or commenting on other users' content.