How to start your Pinterest strategy

A good social media strategy is the key to any great brands online success. But are you really making the most of the platforms you're using? When it comes to social media we're firm believers that one size doesn't fit all. A lot of marketeers are quick to tell brands to adopt Twitter and Facebook. But what about the other platforms, like Pinterest?

Initially popular with brides and bloggers, Pinterest is an online pinboard. Users can create boards around different topics or interests and pin photos to them. It's effectively like an online scrapbook. But with over 75 million users, it can help your brand to reach a huge audience. And if you do it right, it's one of the most powerful platforms you can harness. We like to think of it as productive procrastination. Once you've got your strategy in line, the site is so easy to use that you'll be pinning in your sleep. Or at least while you're watching TV.

So who is Pinterest good for? In general most consumer goods or B2C businesses are ideal for Pinterest. Because it's a visual site, it works best for brands with tangible products. Although it can still be an effective tool for brands who offer services (whether it's B2C or B2B). For example, it can be a great tool to share a portfolio, or show samples of your work.

Unlike other social media sites, the focus of Pinterest is less on interaction. It's more important to create content users will want to repin or share. So there's less emphasis on speaking to your customers. Likewise, it's not a direct marketing tool. And by that we mean you don't want to bombard users with shots of your product. Pinterest connects users by displaying content that relates to their interests. So when you're creating a strategy, you're looking at your customers and their interests.

Raring to get started? Here's our top three tips to anyone looking to start pinning:

1.0 Build boards around your customers

The best place to start building boards around your customers is to think about your customer profiles. Who's buying your product or using your service? What are they interested in? Once you've created a clearer idea of your customer, you can start making boards. To keep your content easy to find, you'll want to create a range of boards. These could around different topics like travel or food or clothes, adding a description. Your description will make your content easier to identify. So you need to try and include key words that you think your customers will search for.

2.0 Adding content (and links) customers will love

When you have your boards set up, the next step is to start pinning. You can pin other users' content or you can upload your own pins. When uploading pins you can add a description and a URL. The description makes the pin easy for users to find when searching content, and the URL lets users know the source. This lets you link back to your website or any relevant content. They're a great way to drive traffic to your site, but these links don't work miracles on SEO. They use no-follow links, so they're not counted by Google. That means they won't affect your Google ranking. But they're a way of directing interested (potential) customers to your site. So it's arguable that pinning can be great for SEO since you're sharing lots of links.

3.0 Don't just pin your own content

What's important is that you don't just upload and share your own content. It's less engaging for users and it feels a little too manufactured. You need to share plenty of relevant pins from other users as well as your own. Where possible, you should try to blend your product within the category. The advantage of this is that your pins will become associated with others. This helps your posts become visible to users browsing similar items.

So now you've got the basis to go get started, why not try Pinterest out? It can be a great way of engaging with potential customers. And it doesn't make them feel as though they're being sold to. Plus with a range of sponsored options now available, Pinterest is constantly looking for ways to help brands market themselves.

Want to chat more about how Pinterest can work for your business? Drop me an email or call 0191 603 0033 and let's have a coffee!

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