Pinterest is the fastest growing social media network in the world, and you're missing out on huge potential if you aren't using the service for online marketing. Many experts believe there could be as many as 200 million users by 2020. Pinterest is an untapped source of free, targeted traffic for small businesses. Even just a tiny slice of this could make a massive difference to your success.
Before you begin marketing on Pinterest, you have to have an understanding of the basics of the social network and know how it can be used to generate traffic. Users can create virtual pinboards to save, display and share content. It's important to consider that Pinterest is a visual social network, so you'll need to use photographs and graphics to attract interest. This is easy if your business creates products, but you may have to be more creative if you're selling a service. A description can be displayed with any content you add to Pinterest, and this can include a link to your website.
A Pinterest account for marketing should be set up as a business account. If you have an existing personal account it can be switched to a business one very easily. Having a Pinterest business account means you can verify your website and boost your credibility as a trusted source.
One of the key benefits of social media marketing is the potential for content to go viral, and Pinterest makes this very easy. The pictures and content you share on your Pinterest Boards can be original, or you can 'Re-Pin' things displayed by other users. This is similar to using the 'Share' option on Facebook. If hundreds of users Re-Pin one of your images it could ultimately be seen by thousands.
Pinterest can be used to raise the profile of your business and develop a brand, but the real value is in the potential to create traffic to your website. The site allows you to add a description to the images you share, and a link to your site can be included within this. Research indicates that Pinterest users are more likely to buy than visitors from any other social media platform. This is believed to be down to the reason many users have Pinterest accounts. Pinterest Boards are often used as 'Wish Lists' for things the user would like to buy or own in the future. For example, a user might create a Board of designer shoes and handbags.
Photographs are always popular on Pinterest, but there are other types of content you can share and add to your Boards. Users tend to scan the site rather than study it in detail, so avoid using large blocks of text. If you want to share written content, create lists or use bullet points so a reader can take in the information very quickly. Infographics have become very popular recently, and these are great for sharing data and numbers in an interesting visual format. If you don't have the time or skills to create an infographic, you can outsource the job or use online tools.
One of the keys to success with Pinterest is to make sharing content as easy as possible. Adding the 'Pin It' button to content on your website and blog means a reader can add it to their Boards with a single click. Services like Pinstamatic can be used to make sharing all kinds of content more visually appealing. It's also important to become an active part of the Pinterest community if you want to generate high volumes of traffic. Re-pinning content shared by others and posting comments on other users' Pins can help to build a following.
It can take some time before you start to see traffic and sales from your Pinterest activity, but it's a proven online marketing strategy with great potential. You don't need any technical skills to use Pinterest, and it's a fun and creative way to reach new customers.