As someone with a personal addicition to the service, I thought today I would discuss the latest hyper-fast growing social media company coming out of Palo Alto, California – Pinterest.
What Is Pinterest?
Pinterest is a virtual pinboard -basically a spot where you can upload or bookmark all your favourite things that you created or found on the Web and then organize it all however you like using boards. You can also follow other people’s boards and invite your friends.
Make a board to plan a trip, design a wedding, decorate your home, bookmark things you want to buy, collect your favourite recipes, or simply browse other people’s boards to get inspired. The possibilities are endless.
- According to comScore: Pinterest is the fastest growing independent site to hit 10 million monthly unique visits in the U.S.
- According to a report from Shareaholic: Pinterest drives more referral traffic than YouTube, Google+ and LinkedIn combined (that’s a lot of traffic)
- Time magazine named it one of the 50 best websites of 2011
- Techcrunch named it the best new startup of 2011
Why Use Pinterest For Business?
Not only can Pinterest generate a ton of buzz for your brand, but it can translate into sales if you play your cards right. If your content starts going viral on Pinterest, you better pray that your site is ready for the influx of traffic that the site can generate.
Whether some retail companies are aware of it or not, they may already be on Pinterest. Users of Pinterest love to design boards featuring clothing, shoes, kitchen wares, and other products they purchased or want to buy. Not only that, but the social aspect of Pinterest means that everyone’s friends and followers can see what they are pinning on their boards as well.
With Pinterest users posting a link to product websites on their Pinterest board, they are:
- Generating traffic to those websites
- Increasing brand awareness for those companies and products
- Potentially helping those companies/products go viral
Not a Retail Company?
There are still possibilities for using Pinterest for business. Even if you aren’t a retailer, you can still get in on the action by linking to your blog posts. Don’t have a blog yet? Add Pinterest to your list as another reason to start one. Make sure when you start your blog, that it has unique content and includes plenty of images and visuals you can share on Pinterest, as well as Facebook and Twitter.
As for visually-lacking brands, Pinterest might not be right for you. The first question you need to ask yourself, is whether Pinterest will work for your product. Don’t just try to jump on the bandwagon because everyone else is doing it.
What Should You Be Pinning?
Below, is an outline of a fews guidelines on using Pinterest for business:
- Post shareworthy content: To be successful in any form of social media, you need to have something to share that others can pass on such as blog posts, photos, tips, news etc.
- Keep it visual: Visuals are key on most blogs and social media sites, but are especially important on Pinterest. Make your how-to’s visual. Videos can be shared as a screen capture image, create infographics. Get creative!
- Make your boards SEO-friendly: Create fun easy titles for boards that are searchable: Valentine’s Day gift ideas, how-to tips, etc.
- Don’t be selfish: As always with social media, remember you are entering a conversation. No one likes someone that only talks about themselves and doesn’t engage with everyone else. Share other people’s content as well as your own. Make sure to also follow anyone that is pinning your content.
- Promote your boards: Introduce your followers on Twitter and Facebook to your boards on Pinterest.
Finally, a company has provided a way to organize the clutter and information overload of the Internet. Pinterest is not only a company to keep an eye on this year, but potentially a company that is changing the way we interact with content on the Web.
While I have only but amazing things to say about Pinterest, I must say it should come with a warning. As I mentioned, it is extremely addictive and will probably become your favourite new timewaster. If you have yet to try it out, you can request an invite at pinterest.com, but don’t say I didn’t warn you!