Now that Pinterest has stopped requiring invites, it’s easier than ever to join.
Pinterest is a social sharing site that launched in 2010 and already has an estimated 20M unique visitors per month. It’s now the third most popular social networking site in the U.S, just behind Twitter.
If you haven’t heard of Pinterest before, it’s a collection of virtual bulletin boards used to save and organize interesting things you find on the web. Users “pin” images and videos to their personal pin boards under a variety of categories so they can save and share the things they love. People can follow each other and repin or comment on each other’s pins. Businesses can use pins to engage fans, share products and events, and more.
The majority of Pinterest users are women between the ages of 25 and 34, but the site is constantly gaining followers and expanding its demographic. Even so, this demographic is important no matter what your target audience may be given that research has shown that women are the ones who make roughly 75% of online purchasing decisions for American households.
Pinterest can be a great tool for small businesses to connect with current customers and attract new ones thanks to engaging images. In a lot of ways, customers do the work for you. If users see a pin and like it, they share it with their friends, who in turn share with their friends, and so on. Many brands, such as Martha Stewart, The Home Depot, and The Boston Celtics have already jumped onboard with Pinterest. Not sure how to make it work for your business? Check out other brands’ pinboards for some creative ideas.
Here are 3 things you should know about Pinterest for your business:
1.) Be a person not a brand – It’s not just about selling, but about creating a relationship with the customer. People connect based on shared tastes and interests. Share images and videos that reflect your interests and that people can relate to. What differentiates Pinterest from other social networks, such as Facebook or Google+, is a lack of distinction between people and brands. You should approach Pinterest as a person your consumers can relate to, rather than a brand.
2.) People pin for the future – Usually people save photos and book mark things from the past. Pinterest has a future mentality that is unique to the archiving system. For example, Facebook users post photos from the past, Pinterest users post photos for the future. Many people use Pinterest for future planning rather than archiving things for the past.
3.) Inside tips – Use hash tags and dollar signs. As with any social networking site, there are tricks that will help your posts get more visibility. Hashtags: Just like Twitter, Pinterest understands what hashtags are, so use them to associate topics and to help your pins be found and shared. Use categories or keywords as hashtags, or even play around with them and get creative to add some humor. Add $: Adding a dollar sign in front of a price will automatically add the pin to Pinterest’s Gifts section and lets people know the item is for sale. When applicable, remember to add “$” to your pins. Enhance your “About” and “pin boards” descriptions with keywords so that users can easily find you and your content when searching. Add your website url to encourage pinners to learn more about your company. You can even connect your Pinterest account to your Facebook and Twitter accounts for easier sharing and engagement.
Small business owners have reported big jumps in website traffic and sales thanks to Pinterest, so if your business isn’t on there, why not give it a try? Have some fun with it and play around with images, photos, and videos that reflect your brand’s interests and engage customers. Give Pinterest a shot and get started with this fast-growing networking site. Consider yourself officially invited!