Introduction To Pinterest
Pinterest is a fast growing image-based social networking site that not only offers a unique approach to the way that people communicate, but it offers incredible potential to maximize your business exposure and brand awareness.
Even those who held no interest in other types of social media sites have jumped on board Pinterest simply because it offers a very innovative method to share and communicate with others who hold the same interests.
With more than 10 million visitor’s monthly and over 2 million visitor’s hitting the site each day, Pinterest is an extremely valuable resource for spreading your business message, connecting with potential customers, and furthering your brand.
But how exactly does Pinterest work?
Pinterest is similar to the bulletin boards that you’ve seen located in shopping malls, local grocery stories, and perhaps convenience stories, but on a global scale.
Similar to the way that corkboards and bulletin boards work in local shops, where people can pin up announcements, news, items for sale and of interest, Pinterest’s foundation is based on providing users with the opportunity to “pin” the things that interest them.
Imagine being able to create a virtual “sticky note” for your business that is seen by thousands of visitors a day. Now consider the branding opportunity that is now at your fingertips, just by utilizing the popularity of a virtual “corkboard”.
It’s no surprise that hundreds of businesses, entrepreneur’s and marketer’s have begun to develop creative marketing campaigns based around the ever-growing Pinterest community.
Exploiting The Popularity of Pinterest
In order to create an effective marketing campaign within the Pinterest community, you need to understand the features and extended options when creating pins.
One of the most powerful components of a successful pin is in your ability to create, collect and display various images from your websites, resources, and even other website’s in your niche market.
Visitor’s to Pinterest are interested in exploring relevant content pertaining to their interests, and while many of Pinterest pages are designed around specific brands, physical products and collectibles, you can easily create popular Pinterest pages around your offers, just by helping members discover your very own “themed” image collections.
For example, if you are in the business of selling physical products, such as t-shirts, mouse pads, books, DVD’s or anything in which you can usual visual marketing components to sell your items, you can easily create a Pinterest page that includes a full collection of product images from your inventory.
But even if you sell digital products, you can still take advantage of image themed pins by creating a visual library of everything associated to your brand, including your logo, ebook covers, and other image-based marketing materials.
And don’t just stop there. With Pinterest you can also create visual-marketing campaigns around other image types including spreadsheets, graphs, charts, and even mindmaps!
Examples of Successful Pinterest Campaigns
Consider the image-based training tools that you use within your products. All of these can be used to create Pinterest based pages that provide a visual illustration of the services and products that you offer.
Drawing from a couple of examples of successful Pinterest marketing, let’s take a closer look at Etsy – their Pinterest page vailable at http://pinterest.com/etsy/pins
Etsy has developed a presence within Pinterest just by showcasing handmade crafts, clothing, vintage collections and designs from their community.
But Etsy is only one of many online businesses who have taken advantage of Pinterests global community. Sony Music, Pepsi, clothing designers, interior decorators, and many other big-brand companies have established Pinterest accounts in order to futher connect with their target audience.
When it comes to online businesses, Mashable has had great success with their Pinterest page, available at http://pinterest.com/mashable/pins
Mashable is the perfect example of how online businesses can begin to generate high targeted traffic to their websites instantly, while maximizing exposure with very little work involved.
The basis of Mashable’s Pinterest page is to simply take traditional blog posts and create a simple image-based overview or summary of each content piece.
For example, if you were writing a blog post about the “Top 10 Traffic Sources For This Year”, you could easily create an image that represents ‘traffic’, with 10 headlines outlining the different traffic sources.
You could then link that image to the full article on your blog, directing viewers from Pinterest to your website!
When someone clicks on your image, they would be directed to a full article on your website or blog – or perhaps you may lead them to another social networking account such as Facebook or Twitter.
You can direct people anywhere you choose from sales pages, squeeze pages, download pages (lead capture) – or to another one of your Pinterest pages.
Viral Marketing With Pinterest
There’s another powerful component to the way that Pinterest has been created – your pins can easily go viral!
If people like your pins, they can choose to “re-pin” your content, maximizing exposure and carrying your message throughout countless Pinterest pages.
If you take a closer look at a popular pin page, you can see the number of re-pins that took place for each update. In some cases, a single pin has been re-pinned hundreds of times!
People can also “like” your pin, and the number of likes will appear at the bottom of your Pinterest pages.
Creating images for your Pinterest pages is also extremely easy to do. You don’t have to have fancy graphics, nor do you have to outsource the work to a graphic designer. Quite often, the best pin based images are those that are simple, direct and to the point.
Your image could simply be your product cover, with a direct link to your sales page. Or, for a more effective Pinterest campaign, you could create an image based around a current news headline, capturing attention from a larger audience, with your image leading them to a full article on your site that ties in with the current event.
You want to focus on creative Pinterest campaigns that will reach a broader audience, and capture a browser’s attention quickly.
Most of the images used by successful marketer’s are very simple and clear, while others create more elaborate graphics that include charts, full article content in image-form, and even cartoons that help carry their marketing message.
Just get creative and start pinning every bit of content you can that will help to build awareness of your brand. There is nothing that can’t be pinned with a bit of imagination and creativity!
Quick Start Ideas
- Post comical or funny images that tie into your niche market, and lead people to a full article on your website.
- Create Pinterest based contests and giveaway events encouraging other members to repin your pages.
- Take advantage of visual “stimulators” and create pins that offer colorful images to attract attention. High resolution images from stock photo sites (providing you with a valid license to distribute) work well at capturing attention quickly.
- Include training based images in your pins. If you are involved in social marketing, you could create a simple graph that illustrates the top social marketing websites based on traffic stats and outreach. If you are involved in the weight loss market, you could create an image that offers the average weight loss.
Maximizing Exposure For Unlimited Free Traffic
Pinterest offers a great way for business owners and even affiliates to connect with potential customers and generate fresh, new leads as well!
Here are just a few ways that you can take advantage of the popularity of Pinterest to maximize your affiliate profits.
- Create images around current events and then tie that into an article on your website. Make money from affiliate offers that are somehow connected to the topic. Your content doesn’t have to be about the event, but should lead in with it.
For example, you could create a pin with an image and headline that reads “Apple’s New iPhone Failure” – which directs people to your website that features an article on Apple’s inability to keep up with market demand, and how it’s almost impossible to get your hands on one.
You could follow up with an overview of other mobile phones that are similar to the iPhone, leading visitor’s to distributors through your affiliate link. Think about how much money you can make just by exploiting current news and events!
Features include the ability to collect and display images that you find on the Internet. You can browse boards from other members to discover new items as well as create your very own themed collections.
Pinterest is truly the most visual-oriented social networking site, making it easy to create attractive pin boards that will attract attention from potential customers.
Pinterest will work for your marketing campaign if your business is focused on fashion, photography, travel or design based offers, but with a bit of creativity, you can take advantage of the popularity of Pinterest to promote nearly any other business type.
For example, one company created a “Twitter Cheat Sheet” that was a simple image outlining the different areas of the Twitter community site. This image was pinned thousands of time by new Twitter users and marketer’s.
Consider what you could create that would attract visitor’s to your website and create your own visually enhanced marketing campaign with Pinterest.
- Create image based content around your niche. Consider graphics, spreadsheet images, or infographs.
- Encourage others to pin your image content by opening up contests and events based around your customer base creating additional images involving your brand (logo, creatives, etc).
- Tweet out links to your Pinterest collections, pushing traffic from one social media site to another.
- Sell your products directly! If you add a $ sign to a number in your pin, Pinterest will automatically create a price tag for your pin. You could sell photographs, stock photos, logos, mascots and other creatives.
- Think about the different image based training tools that you’ve used within your business, and consider how you can use similar images to create popular Pinterest pages. Visual tutorials or illustrations.
The key to success with Pinterest is to be proactive in marketing your pages. Add a “follow me on Pinterest” button or tag to your websites and blogs.
Pin other people’s pages rather than just your own content and provide value to existing and new followers by helping them discover new images.