If you’re a small business owner looking to get more leads and sales from the web, you might be considering marketing your business on Pinterest. Read this first! We’ll share the Who, What, & How of Pinterest and also let you know WHERE it should fall into your online marketing strategy.
WHAT is Pinterest?
Pinterest describes itself as a virtual pinboard. Whether you’re redecorating your home and tired of cutting out pictures from magazines, preparing for a dinner party and having trouble keeping all your recipes organized or planning your wedding and looking for a place to keep all your great ideas, Pinterest lets you organize and share all the interesting, pretty, unique, remarkable, inspiring things you find on the web. Any image can be turned into a pin and a collection of images makes up a board. This is an especially cool idea if you have a remodeling business!
What is a Pin?
A pin is an image you add to one of your boards that links back to the site it came from. For example, a picture of a cool rustic kitchen or an amazing beach house. You can either create original pins while you’re browsing the web via the Pin It button or you can repin something another user has already pinned when you’re browsing Pinterest.
What is a Board?
A board is a collection of pins. You create your own boards and categorize your pins any way you choose. Examples might include: Recipes to Try, Home Decorating Ideas, My Dream Home and Wedding Ideas.
HOW to Use Pinterest?
Let’s take the example of using Pinterest to redecorate and/or remodel your home. You probably spend hours scouring the web for that perfect kitchen look – you have to think about the cabinets, the appliances, the layout, the floor, the island, the paint and the unique special features you want to incorporate. BUT, they don’t all come together in a neatly packaged “My Dream Kitchen” kit you can pick up at the store – you found the appliances you want on the manufacturer site, the cabinets you want on a kitchen designer’s site, the paint idea on a home remodeling blog and the other knick-knacks on who knows what website. With Pinterest, you can keep all the ideas together on a board to reference and share.
WHO can use Pinterest for their business?
Now that you know what Pinterest is, you’re probably asking yourself, “How can I use Pinterest to promote my business?” No matter what type of business you have, one of your primary goals should be to get more qualified visitors to your website. Every pin has multiple links back to your site, so you want people to pin and repin images from your site as frequently as possible.
How you go about adding images depends on what type of business of you have. If you own a home design business (think: kitchen remodeling, custom homes, landscaping), Pinterest is made for you! You want people to “pin” examples of your work. The first thing you should do is create a gallery or multiple galleries on your site.
Then, make it easy for visitors to pin your images by adding the Pin It button to your site:
If you own a service-based business (think: plumbing, electrical, hvac), sign up for Pinterest and post coupons, giveaways and special deals.
WHERE should Pinterest marketing fall in my online marketing strategy?
According to Blue Corona’s social media manager, Betsy McLeod:
“Pinterest is no longer just for dreamy wedding planners and DIY enthusiasts. You can find a Pinterest board on everything imaginable, from high-level interests (pets) down to uber-specific interests (blueprints for 1930s New York skyscrapers). What this means for advertisers is that the holy grail of super-specific niche markets exists, and it’s in the form of an online pin board.”
While Pinterest can benefit most companies, she adds, it’s best for e-commerce and for building brand awareness.
With that being said, you’ve got to be strategic when it comes to marketing your business online, rather than just hopping on every new marketing trend.
For most small businesses, here’s how you should prioritize your marketing efforts online:
Step 1: Track everything. You no longer have to trust your gut instinct to know if your marketing is working, so why should you?
Step 2: Transform your website into a lead generation machine. I can’t think of many small websites where it makes sense to have a Pinterest account BEFORE you have a website that’s capable of turning your qualified visitors into leads and sales.
Step 3: Maximize your online real estate, starting with the search engines. You should have good organic rankings (SEO helps with this) and have at least tested out paid listings before moving on to Pinterest. Why? Because people searching for your products and services on search engines have more intent to buy them. People on Pinterest could simply be browsing for outfit inspiration for that day.
With that being said, once you’ve maximized your search engine real estate, you should then move on to social media platforms your target audience is using—like Pinterest.
About The Author: Ben Landers is the President and CEO of Blue Corona, a data-driven, inbound internet marketing company. Submit an inquiry to book Ben to speak at your next conference or event.
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