Curious About Pinterest?
PInterest is suddenly taking the internet by storm. I love it, it reminds me of scrapbooking online. Naturally I was curious as to how this could benefit my entrepreneurial clients. Well, luckily one of my talented clients is Beth Hayden, blogging and wordpress expert and national PInterest authority. She has kindly agreed to share her article below on this topic, with my audience. Thanks Beth! To learn how to market effectively with Pinterest, download her free report, 5 Stupid Mistakes to Avoid if You Want to Make Money with Pinterest. And enjoy her article below…
Pinterest is a hot topic these days – no doubt about it.
Social media sites and personal blogs are all aflutter with talk of this new social media website that allows users to create online image collages, then share those collages (called “pinboards”) with other Pinterest users.
Pinterest is easy to set up and fun to use. It’s also becoming wildly popular, particularly with women, ages 25-54.
At this point, you may be thinking to yourself, “Really? ANOTHER time-sucking social media site I need participate in?”
But there are a number of reasons why you may want to pay attention to Pinterest, and possibly move it up on your list of marketing priorities.
Pinterest reported more than 7 million unique visitors in December, up from just 1.6 million in September, and those increasing numbers are showing no signs of slowing. Thousands of new users are signing up and using the site every day.
Most importantly – right now Pinterest is driving more traffic to websites and blogs than YouTube, Google+ and LinkedIn combined, according to content-sharing site Shareaholic.
Do you need more traffic to your business website or blog? Then you may want to start using Pinterest to market your business!
How to get started with Pinterest
Because Pinterest is still in beta mode, you do need an invitation in order to get an account. The easiest way to get one is to ask someone who’s already a member of the site to invite you – any current user can invite her friends into the Pinterest world. You will need to connect your account to either your Twitter profile or your Facebook presence – Pinterest requires you to do one or the other.
Once you’ve got a Pinterest account, you can create online collages (“boards”) for different topics you’re interested in, and then add images and videos to your boards by “pinning” them. The interface is fast, slick and really fun.
You can get a cool little bookmarklet that lets you pin images from all over the web. This bookmarklet lets you put a “Pin it” button at the top of your web browser, so you can pin images quickly and easily as you come across cool and interesting content.
You can also “repin” images from other users – just hover your mouse over another user’s pinned image, and a little “repin” button will appear in the upper left area of the pin. Click on that button to add an image to one of your boards.
How to Use Pinterest to Market Your Business
Now that you’ve got your Pinterest account up and running, how do you use pinning to market yourself? Here are five suggestions for using Pinterest to expand your brand and engage with your customers.
1. Make your content visually engaging. In order for your web pages and blog posts to get pinned on Pinterest (and reap the benefits of being passed around on the site) your posts must include clear, appealing images. If you spend some time on the Pinterest site, you’ll see what types of photos get repinned consistently – the pictures are interesting and compelling.
I get most of my blog post images from iStockPhoto.com. This popular stock photo site has millions of images (most of which are very affordable) and you can run specific searches, so you can find exactly the kind of photos you’re looking for.
To start getting traffic (and business) from Pinterest, you need to add images to every blog post, landing page and sales page on your website – no excuses!
2. Make the most of your Pinterest profile! Make sure you feature your business name on your profile for maximum exposure. Pinterest will pull your Facebook login or Twitter userid and use that as your Pinterest login, but you can always go back and edit your profile later. In your profile fields, you can use your business name instead of your surname so that your biz name shows up on your Pinterest home page. I highly recommend doing this!
You can also add a paragraph about who you are and what you’re interested in to the “About” section on your Pinterest profile. It will show up right under your profile photo, and will be one way that users can find out more about you. Don’t forget to add your website URL in your profile, too!
3. Engage with other Pinterest users! Tag other Pinterest users in your pins by using “@username” in your descriptions. You can network with other professionals and vendors in your field by using this feature. This technique is just catching on in the Pinterest world, so you can really use it to build your following and stand out from the crowd.
You can also comment on other people’s pins. Just like with tagging, this feature hasn’t really caught on yet, so use it regularly to really engage with other users.
Another suggestion is to regularly “like” other people’s pins to give a thumbs-up when you want to recognize great content. This is an easy way to interact with other users in an approachable, personal way.
4. Create your own Pinterest store. You can add prices to your pins to create your own Pinterest shop. To add a price to a pin, type the $ or £ symbol followed by item’s price in the pin’s description. This is a great way to feature your products, particularly if you sell direct-to-consumer items that appeal to women. Check out the Pinterest Gifts section for ideas on how to use this feature.
5. Offer exclusive Pinterest promotions. You can create pins that offer special giveaways for following you on Pinterest. Or you can invite your readers to pin links and images from your site that inspire, motivate, move or entertain them. Then judge the winners by creativity or ingenuity and offer a juicy prize. Don’t forget to offer to promote the winners’ Pinterest boards on your site as part of the contest!
6. Become an information curator for your niche. Gather the newest and best resources on your boards. While you become a trusted source of information on Pinterest, and your following will grow by leaps and bounds.
Pick the best information – the most educational, informative and compelling information – to put on your boards, and users will flock to your Pinterest presence as a way to get information about your subject. And don’t be afraid to show a little personality! People do business with you as an individual, and they want to know what you like!
Pinning for Traffic – and for Dollars!
Pinterest has become a proven source of traffic for blogs and websites, quickly surpassing current favorites like LinkedIn and YouTube. While lots of folks are flapping their jaws about the impressive statistics of Pinterest, some companies are quietly using this fun new tool to pin their way to better customer engagement and a visually interesting brand.
My advice for solopreneurs? Consider using Pinterest as part this year’s online strategy for your business. And start creating a more compelling marketing message, one beautiful little pin at a time.
About the Author: Beth Hayden helps solopreneurs and small business owners make money effortlessly through Internet marketing systems that support them every step of the way. You can follow Beth’s pins at @bethhayden. To learn how to market effectively with Pinterest, download her free report, 5 Stupid Mistakes to Avoid if You Want to Make Money with Pinterest