For years, business owners have tried to figure out the best way to describe Pinterest. Is it Facebook, but only photos?
Is it like a more-curated version Google images?
Is it something that a business owner that has nothing to do with weddings, kids, clothes or crafts should even bother with?
I think yes. And I think no.
I think the answer is all of these and none of these.
Wikipedia says: “Pinterest CEO Ben Silbermann summarized the company as a “catalog of ideas,” rather than as a social network, that inspires users to “go out and do that thing.”
Sure, you can follow brands and other ‘pinners.’ But the social interaction aspect of Pinterest isn’t, in my opinion, the most valuable part of Pinterest.
In my mind, the most appealing aspect of Pinterest is the fact that people who are into Pinterest are often almost addicted to it.
My definition of Pinterest is that it’s basically online window-shopping. (And that’s why I suspect it appeals more to women then men.)
Pinterest is an endless mall of inspiring projects, fashion and yes – products! Its halls are packed with constantly shopping, milling, looking visitors. So should you be there? Heck yes!
So what if you’re not in the wedding or fashion or kid business? These shoppers could very well need you as well!
Now the question is…what should you be pinning? How often? How many boards?
Here are 10 Pinning for Business Tips:
1. It’s a Numbers Game
It’s hard to establish hard and fast rules about how many pins and how many boards a company should establish. A lot of that will depend on what kind of industry you are in.
But a good rule of thumb is that you should have no less than 10 boards with at least 5 pins in them. You should try to pin at least once a day, more if you can.
(Does that panic you? It shouldn’t. There are many scheduling tools available so you can set your pinning up for the whole week in one weekly session.)
2. Brand Clear
When you are setting up your Pinterest profile, don’t get cute. Make sure your business name is clearly in your actual profile name. And don’t forget to fill out your profile in full.
Make sure your “about” section has a little bit about you and while you’re at it, add some interesting details about you and your business.
You want to be professional and businesslike but you also want to add a bit of personality so pinners feel like they are getting to know you.
3. Think SEO
By now, you should know what keywords you should be targeting. When you are naming your boards, try to naturally but clearly include keywords in the board names.
Google loves fresh content and pinning new, fresh content counts!
4. Tag It
Hashtagging works on Pinterest in much the same way it works on Twitter. If you pin something that has to do with plumbing, try hashtagging it with something like #diyplumbing or #plumbingtips.
That way, when people actively search for those terms, your pin is more likely to appear, be seen and be clicked on! Pinterest is a traffic super highway, so make sure you plant plenty of signs (hashtags) pointing to your site.
5. Be Generous
A good portion of your Pinterest time should be devoted to other boards and other pinners. It’s a great way to increase your own follower count and activity on your boards.
How? Because following other boards can lead to them following you back. Repinning or liking someone’s pin can help them to notice you. Leaving a comment can also engage them.
Depending on their settings, they may even receive an email mentioning you whenever you follow, repin or comment!
(Speaking of mentions, once you get someone to follow you, remember to occasionally @mention them. That’s another great way to engage with and to get a pinner’s attention.)
6. Pin Simple
Aside from the scheduling tool, there are other ways you can more easily automate and simplify the pinning process.
You don’t need to be sitting behind a desk or laptop in order to pin. You can download the Pinterest app and pin from your smartphone or tablet.
You can get your pinning done on the subway, in the dentist’s waiting room…anywhere you have time to kill.
Actually, you don’t need to be on the Pinterest at all in order to pin! You can simply be browsing online and – if you have the Pinterest browser button installed – when you see an image you like, you can hit “Pin it!”
That’s it. (Told you pinning at least once a day was easy, didn’t I?)
7. Pin It All
Pinning is not just limited to beautiful photographs. You can pin any kind of image. Infographics, charts…even videos. Think outside the box when you are pinning.
Remember, the point of pinning is ultimately to pull traffic to your site, so look your site over carefully and find ways to pin back to it.
(Note: remember to pin the ‘root’ of the video, the URL where it actually resides. Pinning the embedded video won’t work.)
8 Get Descriptive
This might be the most important tip of all. Remember that, aside from directly driving traffic to your site, the point of pinning is to have someone repin your pins and carry that link back to your site with it.
But there will inevitably be times where you are pinning something from someone else’s site.
(And you should! There’s no way you can pin every single day directly back to your site. Not unless you are a media company that updates its site with new content every day.)
So how do you make sure that you get credit for that pin? In the description! Think of your description as a valuable little “tag” you hang on that image that travels all over Pinterest.
So make sure that you mention your business name in the description. A.B.B. , people. Always be branding, even on Pinterest!
9. Think Pinterest, Even While Blogging
When you are choosing images to accompany your blog post, envision what they will look like on Pinterest. Choose images that are “pin-worthy.”
Make sure they are attractive and interesting and most importantly – relevant to the content of your blog. You want to be able to pin images that clearly indicate what kind of content a reader would find once they click that pin.
10. Study The Best
The best way to figure out how to pin for your business is to watch how others do it.
One way to do this is to research your competition. Are they successful on Pinterest? If they have a lot of followers and activity, monitor them. Find out what they pin, how often they pin and what kind of images they use.
And remember, you don’t need to just look at your direct, local competition. You can use even national, larger accounts in your industry to find out what resonates on Pinterest with your customers and prospects.
Another great way to research how to succeed on Pinterest is to check out the Pinterest Business Page. There you’ll find case studies, success stories, tools and a really informative blog.
Do you pin? Have you been avoiding Pinterest because you think it doesn’t apply to you and your business? Or have you found success on Pinterest? Tell me in the comments below!
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