A relatively newer social media site is making groundbreaking waves on the Internet. Since its start in 2010, Pinterest has gone on to gain over 10 million regular users, making it one of the fastest growing social networking sites ever. Although Pinterest started out as a virtual scrapbook for personal sharing and use, it has since expanded and opened up a multitude of opportunities for businesses.
What sets Pinterest apart is that there has never been anything quite like it before. Imagine being able to pin just about anything you want on a virtual corkboard and you’ll get the essential idea of Pinterest. In addition, you’ll be able to organize these boards into topic-specific scrapbooks.
For businesses, Pinterest provides a way to pin a variety of company information, products, and services onto organized online boards.
While Pinterest can be a great marketing tool for your company, you probably have questions about it and wonder whether or not it can really help grow your business.
Whether you are already using Pinterest or have yet to embark on the Pinterest journey, here are 10 popular Questions and Answers that most small businesses have about this platform:
1) What is Pinterest and how much does it cost?
Pinterest is a free social networking site that relies heavily on sharing photos. Often referred to as a social scrapbook or corkboard site, Pinterest allows registers users to post collages of pictures on virtual boards. The pictures can then be shared with other users who can pin the photos on their own boards.
This form of photo sharing can help businesses by allowing consumers to get a personal view of a company, its services, and its products. The more colorful and pleasing the pictures are, the more often it will catch a potential customer’s attention.
2) Does Pinterest have options specifically for businesses?
In 2012, Pinterest introduced business accounts for companies, brands, and organizations. One of the biggest benefits of having a business account as opposed to a personal account is that you’ll be able to verify your company’s official website. This gives credibility to your photos and boards since it proves to your audience that you are the truly affiliated with your business.
In addition, Pinterest offers a plethora of educational materials and tutorials to help businesses effectively market their services.
For instance, some of the tutorials show businesses how to effectively create a company story, how to increase product exposure, how to build a Pinterest community, and practice tips to help your customer base grow.
3) How does posting images help my business?
Pinterest is now one of the most popular social networking sites, right behind Facebook and Twitter. This alone helps businesses as millions of people flock to Pinterest regularly.
Pinterest will help drive more traffic back to your company website. Each time you pin something to a board, you can link what you pinned directly back to your site or blog by using the provided description area below the pin. Each pin comes with its own description box which allows you to describe the product in 500 characters or less.
In addition, most Pinterest users browse the site looking for purchasing ideas, unlike Facebook and Twitter. This is not to say that all members go to Pinterest with the goal of buying something, but Pinterest users are much more likely to look for items or services to buy while on Pinterest as opposed to the other social networking sites. Keep in mind, however, that other social networks are effective for businesses in different ways. They key is to network on all the major social networking sites for the best results.
4) It seems like Facebook has more options that just pinning photos. Why should I market photos when I can use another site that offers more ways to market my business?
Although Facebook offers a variety of options to its business users, there are unique features on Pinterest that aren’t found on other sites. For example, while it’s true that you can also post photos on Facebook, you can’t organize your pictures on boards in a way that makes it easier for consumers to browse through.
Furthermore, at this time, Facebook doesn’t offer ways to find photos by simply searching for the keyword. On Pinterest, users can simply use the “search” function to explore the kinds of photos they are looking for.
5) Aside from pinning pictures to my boards, what else can I do on Pinterest to help get my business exposure?
There are many things you can do on Pinterest to help boost your business. First, be certain to connect your Pinterest boards to the other popular social networks. In fact, Pinterest provides an easy way to share your photos with other social networking sites via a “share” button.
In addition, your business will get noticed more if you interact with other members. Consider browsing photos of other businesses in the same industry as you and following them. The “search” feature on Pinterest will help you easily find photos and other members that are relevant to your business.
One of the most important things to remember is that you’ll need to make all of your boards searchable. When creating a board, be certain to file it under the correct category of your business. You’ll be prompted to choose a category before publishing each board.
You can also run contests on Pinterest. Creating a contest is an excellent way to drive in new customers by offering an incentive to those that help spread the word. Pinterest business users can create colorful product and service photos, pin them to a contest board, then offer a prize to the winner who re-pins or gets the most shares from one of your contest pictures. This will not only help your followers get more exposure, but it will allow your pins to be seen by their followers as well.
Part 2 of Pinterest Q & A to be continued on the next post. 😉
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