Using Pinterest - a small business guideRecently, I’ve been talking to quite a few of my clients about Pinterest and I discovered that it’s potential value to their businesses was actually a bit of a mystery to them. So for this article I thought it might be useful to explain how Pinterest can be used.

What is Pinterest anyway?

Pinterest falls under the banner of social media. Completely free, users create online pinboards, generally featuring themed collections of images and/or videos.

It tends to be very female biased (though not exclusively) and is perfect for lifestyle, home décor/interiors, weddings, food, fashion – it’s all about ideas and inspiration.

Pinterest is great for consumer ecommerce businesses and has been proven to drive better online sales conversion than the mighty Facebook! It is a highly effective social commerce site 🙂

How can it help my business?

Pinterest can actually help build greater brand awareness for your business and help you engage with your customers.

Think of it as an alternative to a Facebook business page – if you have a Facebook page you’ll be familiar with adding posts that are designed to drive traffic to your website. Likewise, with Pinterest you can pin pictures to your boards showcasing your products (possibly with complimentary products from other companies) or bringin what you do to life if you provide a service. Why not show customers using your products, customer case studies or completed projects – that will generate interest and drive traffic to your website where they can get the full picture of your business and/or your product range.

How you use your boards is up to you. Consider creating a photo-based competition or crowdsource ideas by inviting users to add suggestions for improvement to pictures of your products, or ask for their votes for new ranges you’re considering adding to your stock.

If you go to events or interesting venues, why not share photos before, during and after the event.

It’s all about making an impression, giving an audience insight into your business and why they might want to buy from you.

So what works best?

Pinterest is very mobile friendly and most people use it on their phones. So for a better experience pins with a vertical aspect ratio are the best.

Think about how you’ll describe your Pin. Pinterest is very visual but words actually do count as well and are powerful for search and being found in the first place. Take the time to explain how a particular product will be of benefit to customers – write thoughtful and helpful descriptions. Better descriptions will also help your Pins show up in on-site searches (and even Google!). The more you can put yourself in your customers’ shoes, the better your descriptions will become – if you’re selling wedding hair accessories, write about the ideal length of hair or hairstyle that a particular hair clip will suit.

The more you get into the ways of Pinterest the more click throughs to your website you’ll get, as well as repins that will ensure your Pins are seen by more and more people.

Ready to give Pinterest a go or using it already? Let me know what works well for your business!