Pinterest for Businesses – A Primer
Once an upstart in the world of social media, Pinterest is looking more and more like something that is here to stay. At first, many businesses struggled to create campaigns on Pinterest that “stuck” and produced the desired results, i.e. increased traffic to their primary website, or more users “following” the business’ Pinterest boards. This is a common struggle for businesses still today, and one of the main reasons we have put together this post. This post is not going to explain any down-and-dirty tricks, so if you’re looking for a specific formula for pinning success, you’re out of luck (at least for today!) in regards to this particular post. If what you’re searching for is more of a checklist of broader tips, then you’re in the right place!
3 Things Every Good Pin Should Have
Regardless of who is doing the pinning, every good pin should have these three things:
- Visual interest
- Relatability / Connectability
Why are these things important? These traits are at the heart of the three tips that every pinteresting business should know!
Tip #1: Make sure that your pins have simple ideas behind them that are easy to explain
The idea or concept behind a pin needs to be something that is simple enough for you to be able to easily explain it to your target audience. This simplicity then needs to transfer over to your audience when they are explaining your pin to their friends and followers; if someone were to re-pin your original pin, would they easily be able to explain what it was about and why they like it?
- Spotlight: Harvard Business Review – To Keep Your Customers, Keep It Simple – by Patrick Spenner and Karen Freeman
Tip #2: Find or create a fantastic image for each pin
This one might seem like common sense (as Pinterest is a highly visual site) but quite a few businesses don’t grasp this concept fully so it is a very valuable tip! A great (and relevant) image is essential to each and every pin you create because it is what people will see first thing when they find your pin. An overwhelming majority of Pinterest users base their activity on the images that are used for pins; if the picture doesn’t spark their interest, they move on without ever opening the pin. It is also important to ensure that no matter who sees your pin or where they find it (for example if your pin is repinned by someone else) it is very obvious that the image came from you / belongs to your site and content.
Video How-to: Web graphics: Add a watermark to photos using your logo – by Marlene Hielema
Tip #3: Give your pins a story
People connect more with things that they can relate with, or things that create an emotion. Does your pin have a story behind it? If it doesn’t try to find something that you can tie it to that makes it more relateable and interesting. Think human interest, current events, etc. Not every pin can have a story, but it is definitely worth it to try!
Bonus Tip: The whole truth, and nothing but the truth – something every pin needs
Relying on sensationalism and half-baked ideas is no way to create a pin that is going to stand the test of time. Pinning things that aren’t entirely truthful, or basing your pins on less-than-accurate information can also backfire badly, damaging your business’ reputation on Pinterest and elsewhere. Each pin you create needs to be truthful and honest. Whether this means having an accurate image, crediting your sources, or simply making sure the pin appears in the correct category or on the right board, the point is that you are making an effort towards truth and honesty and that is what counts. Taking things one step further and applying the same principle for the content your pin links to is even better because it ensures a complete chain of accurate information. People like information that they can trust and use in their own lives, so this bonus tip can help you gain more loyal followers in the long run!
More about Truth, Honesty, and Pinning Ethically:
- Pinterest / Etiquette – by Pinterest
- #Pinterest: Giving Credit Where Credit Is Due – by Raylene Wall
- Pinterest Commandment #2: Honor thy source – by Orange Tail Marketing
Pinterest is a wonderful new way to reach out and connect with your target audience. Businesses can learn a lot from simply watching the activities of people in in their target market, or other businesses in the same industry. Even if your business does not have a large volume of obviously pinnable content, you can still participate in a meaningful way and engage with other people and businesses on Pinterest. Case in point: Whole Foods on Pinterest. You might expect them to have pins and boards on everything related to food, i.e. recipes, food pictures, even gardening and growing / preparing your own ingredients for recipes. Whole Foods has taken things one step beyond what is expected and also shares and pins relating to reusing and recycling items from daily life, exercise and healthy living, and much more. They are making it their business to be relateable and interesting to their target audience AND promote themselves (both directly and indirectly) at the same time. This should be the goal that businesses strive for when operating a successful presence on Pinterest!
Did you hear? We love comments!
We want to know: Do you use these tips when creating new pins for your business? Why or why not?