- Pinterest has become a very popular social media outlet, and it’s influencing consumers with its ability to convey and share visual ideas.
- Pinterest can engage consumers with images of your brand’s products and ideas on pinboards, but it’s also a chance for brand fans to get a behind-the-scenes look at the brand’s inspiration, family and personality.
- Staying fresh and continually pinning, re-pinning, following and refreshing pinboards is important in order to maintain a quality level of engagement with your followers.
Nearly everyone is busy commenting, liking, following or tweeting these days. But how about pinning? One of the latest and hottest social media trends is Pinterest, a social media venue all about exploring and discovering new things. It allows its users to share and curate ideas by “pinning” images or videos to various themed pinboards using a “Pin It” button, and users and fellow pinners can then choose to follow none, a few or all of some else’s boards.
The Facts and Figures
In December 2011, Pinterest made Hitwise’s list of the Top 10 Social Networks, coming in at No. 5 and even beating big names like LinkedIn and Google+. According to media company Compete, Pinterest visitors increased by 155% from December 2011 to January 2012, and the site has a highly engaged audience—a reported 3.3 million users, out of which 70% are female from ages 25–45.
Once you get an invite to Pinterest (which is an easy process primarily consisting of a user requesting said invite), you can log in using a Facebook or Twitter profile, and first things first: Create a company profile using your company logo, an exciting and engaging tagline, and other relevant details.
Another issue to think about is naming your brand’s pinboards. Name them with core keywords that can easily show up in searches, or add attractive phrasing that’s inspired by your own company name. For example, Real Simple magazine has pinboards such as “Real Simple Covers” and “Real Simple Family.” Or give an idea about your pinboard in short phrases rather than just names, as Zulily does. It’s an opportunity to have fun and show a bit of your brand’s personality.
You can create several boards that cover a wide range of topics. But perhaps most importantly, start adding pins to your boards. Don’t just leave them with one or two images or ideas—make sure to fill them up, always including links back to your website. And just like Twitter and Google+, Pinterest also supports the use of hashtags.
Being Followed and Following
Once you’re done preparing your brand’s boards, it’s time to announce your arrival. Send an e-mail blast to your mailing list subscribers about the launch of your Pinterest profile, providing visual examples of your Pinterest activity. Also, promote your new Pinterest presence across all your social networks. Remember, your major traffic flow is going to come from your e-mail subscribers and existing fan base, so be sure to get it out there, and add the Pinterest follow button to your website and e-mails.
Now it’s time to get social. You need to keep your pins rolling in order to engage with followers. You can follow other Pinterest users you think will follow you back, like their comments and even re-pin their pins. When they see you interacting, they will surely check out your pins and maybe even follow you back. You can also re-pin the top related boards to your own Pinterest page. And always remember to credit the owner of the images and sources you pin and to highlight active re-pinners.
To create further interest and engagement, think about launching a Pinterest contest. Ask users to create a pinboard highlighting what they love about your brand, and then award the best or most well-received board with a prize from your company. It has been reported that around 10% of the major retailers have put up pinboard contests to drive their referral traffic. You can also arrange photo hunts, stage “define your style” contests and much more. Pick out your top followers and create a board dedicated to them. You can also ask fans to pin and tag pictures of themselves with their favorite products from your brand, and then easily re-pin those photos. During holidays, ask your followers for their wish lists and arrange some giveaways as well.
You can also use Pinterest to convey information about your company’s team. Create an executive management board and include a bio for each person. Feature employees by posting their photos, as well as images of office outings, events and more to convey that always-important brand and company personality. Fans are always interested in knowing insider facts, and they want to hear about it all.
Analyze if there is a specific image or topic that drives more traffic your way than others. RentTheRunway.com is a fashion rental site that groups its boards into various occasions such as “weddings,” “proms,” “bachelorette parties” and so on, with each board containing many looks inspired by—or inspiring—that particular event.
And don’t be afraid to be unique. BeautyStat.com has one specific pinboard called “Science Behind Beauty” that posts scientific facts about various beauty products that a consumer should know, including expert advice, reviews and suggestions about emerging technologies in the beauty market. You can always re-pin the most featured pins to encourage social engagement.
Maintain your pinboards well and aim to make every board shine. And keep updating and rearranging them frequently to keep the wall looking fresh. After all, the goal is to become the go-to Pinterest account of the beauty world, and you can’t do that relying on old information.
Ron Robinson is the founder and CEO of BeautyStat.com, an online beauty community and social media agency that reaches more than 20 million consumers. He is a veteran product development executive who has worked for leading beauty companies (including The Estée Lauder Companies, Avon Products and Revlon). He currently works with beauty brands, retailers and agencies to connect them to the BeautyStat community for online PR events, sponsored content and rich consumer insights. firstname.lastname@example.org
Upasana Sahu is an editor with BeautyStat.com. She started her career as a cosmetic chemist, playing with chemicals and inventing formulas, and she loves discovering and exploring new beauty products. Sahu also enjoys interacting with BeautyStat.com fans and sharing her opinions on new products and technologies. email@example.com.