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Pinterest marketing is taking off, and seems to show no signs of slowing down. The problem is that many businesses are going on Pinterest, making a whole lot of noise, but failing to make the right kind of noise. Seeing as how Pinterest is a new platform, this is to be expected.

Remember your first few awful forays into Twitter marketing? Ya.

This article is being written with the intent of helping you get past those initial problems so that you can invest your time wisely, and see immediate benefits from your Pinterest marketing.
 

Pinterest basics: What is Pinterest anyway?

 

First, let’s take a look at what Pinterest is, and what people are doing on it:

  • Pinterest’s interaction revolves around a virtual bulletin board - a more visual form of Facebook’s wall.
  • Pinterest users will ‘pin’ things that they find interesting to their boards. This is what begins to connect users to one another, and them to your marketing message.
  • Successful pins are of stimulating pictures. But you’ll can also find articles, recipes, locations, quotations, and other pieces of content that are easy to understand quickly.

Businesses that are already on Pinterest, and thriving, are using the platform to:

  • Make connections with their fans
  • Get new ideas for content on their other social media platforms
  • Test out new products
  • Build their brand loyalty
  • Finding followers that are unique to this platform

Pinterest is working hard on their platforms ability to make money for you, and are trying to find ways to make your businesses succeed all the time. Their users have grown to now over 40 million, giving you many chances to meet new followers that will convert into customers.

How to start a Pinterest business account

 

You can start by signing up for a Pinterest business account, or by converting your existing account to a business account. Everyone on Pinterest will appreciate it if you take the step of labelling yourself as a business account.

Your next step is to look at what Pinterest isn’t: A big sales catalogue for your brand. You can’t expect a bunch of static shots of your products to take off and go anywhere. You need the same type of value added content as you’re posting elsewhere online.

Some examples would include:

  • A clothing store could pin pictures of models wearing the clothes on sale. Keep up to date by adding new pins of the latest fashions, and you’ll start to see what Pinterest marketing is all about.
  • A company that makes ovens pinning up recipes. Show those recipes coming fresh out of the oven being marketed for increased relevance.
  • A store that caters to the skateboarding crowd pinning up images of famous skateboarders. Staying current with competitions will help you increase your relevancy.

Everything you do on Pinterest from your own pins, to Pinterest’s Promoted pins, should be conducted in a way that adds value to your potential follower’s boards. Pinterest isn’t a magazine or a catalogue, it’s based on the same social media marketing tactics that work elsewhere.

What type of content works best for your pins on Pinterest?

 

There are many great pins out there, and they all share one thing in common - they have a use to the follower of that account. Better Homes & Gardens has one of the most successful boards on Pinterest. Take a look at what they do right:

They don’t cut and paste images of their magazine covers! They cut right to the point and offer their users the new and exciting recipes they want. Some of these are even from actual users, deepening brand loyalty even further.

Now you need to focus on what you want from each pin. Is your goal to raise general brand awareness? Do you want more repins so that you can expand your reach? Are you trying to push for more visits to a page on your website? You will be able to do these things by:

  1. Using a clear call to action on the image itself, or within the description.
  2. Putting a link to the website page in the description, and inviting a visit with a simple call to action.
  3. Embedding your company logo within the image itself to increase brand awareness.

You could do all three at once if you want, but try not to overload every single pin. If you have a big board you have space to dedicate pins to different goals in your marketing plan.

Benchmark

Every one of the 109 people who have repinned that image have seen the GE logo. This subtle exposure can start to push people towards a growing brand loyalty.

Calls to action that will motivate your Pinterest followers

 

Having great pins on Pinterest, that people love to repin, is nice...but what do they do? Nothing, unless you have a clear call to action with each pin. Simple examples include:

  • Repin if you agree
  • Visit our website for more
  • Comment with your thoughts

Each one will have varying degrees of success depending on your audience. Use the new Pinterest analytics dashboard to track what’s actually happening with your Pinterest business account.

On Pinterest isn’t the only time you’ll want to have strong calls to action. The Pinterest widgets, which are freely available, can have your fans sharing directly from your website. This will build that link from Pinterest to website, and website to Pinterest, even further.

Pinterest as a link building opportunity

 

With the 500 characters available to you in each post’s description, Pinterest is also an excellent place to work on building links. You can insert keywords from your website plan into your board names, image names, and descriptions, to truly create a series of pins that connect your Pinterest activity to your website goals.

Your goal should be to create a funnel keywords that start up top on your Pinterest. Here’s a sample plan for a sports retailer that sells a wide variety of products, including hockey skates:

  1. Create a Pinterest board titled “The Best Hockey Skates for the 2014 Season.”
  2. Create a pin named “Men’s Hockey skates by CCM.” Do a collage of three different skates, break them down further with a pin for each model.
  3. In the description for the skates, include a link with a call to action like: “We sell many of these men’s CCM hockey skates over on our website, come on by and you’ll surely score!” The text that is underlined will be the link to your landing page for men’s hockey skates made by CCM.

This funnelling starts with a user looking for hockey skates on Pinterest, draws them to your board about general hockey skates, sees them choose CCM hockey skates, and ultimately lands them on your website looking at skates you offer. Without a directed sales funnel like this, you’re wasting your time on Pinterest.

 

About the author:

Matthew Yeoman is the writer over on the Devumi.com Social Media Marketing Blog. Join him on the Devumi blog for all of the latest happenings in social media, new posts are up every Friday. You are also welcome to follow the new Devumi Pinterest account!

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