If you are reading this you likely know Pinterest is a social networking site with a creative twist! Pinners share collections of images they find around the web or create, allowing users to engage visually with a product. A 500 character comment canbe added to each pin.
Be generous: If you have a service of a product to sell the rule of thumb is you promote others 75% of the time and yourself no more than 25%. And the joy is that when you repin your successful competitors they usually come to your board, follow and repin you. Much like those you retweet on twitter follow and retweet you. Pinterest has announced they will soon release a business stream to their product.
Pinterest is a huge referral site so refer others. It is revolutionizing selling and buying practices.
Be ready to be surprised: Almost as a second thought I added steampunk boards featuring the fashions, tools, trains, flying machines and precious goggles of the steampunk genre. Being the great granddaughter of a blacksmith who helped usher in the Industrial age, the daughter of a mechanic, and the wife of a mechanical engineer I have a heightened interest in things mechanical. I was stunned how quickly those boards gathered followers.
Be Creative: Offer a product or service of worth. Create visually appealing photos, the photography will make or break your product. Use great lifestyle photography of your life, your surroundings, how the product is used, what it looks like and encourage others to share them. Add relevant and keyword rich comments – you have 500 characters, use no more than 2 #’s for each pin.
Users repeastedly bookmark How To’s, DIY’s etc, blogs on Pinterest. Put your content on video or a slide presentation that you create. Know your tools, know what the “populars” are, and what users are sharing? Ask yourself, “how do my images compare to others?”
Be Proactive: Put ‘pin it’ buttons on images you want them to share. Install the “pin it” on pinterest plug in, it will give you the “pin this box so you can upload an image and a description” and if anyone hits the button it will upload your interest.
Pinterest.com/goodies you will find the url of the web page and the image and it generates a code you can add pin it buttons. Pinterest is a huge traffic driver. Encourage people to pin your products, whatever you produce, remind people to share it on pinterest to encourage them to put your posts out there.
Retailers encourage users to make a wish list pinterest board of their products. Those who did were given coupons. If your business lends itself to this, you could replicate that approach.
Turn your books testimonials/product reviews into images. Take your reviews from Amazon, and other review places. Turn them into visually appealing graphics that people will want to pin and re-pin. Share pics of the settings, the clothes, the houses you imagine they used. Have a board just for characters or scenes.
Hold a “Pin it to Win it” contest for the launch of your book or product. Create a graphic for this or have your readers create their own with a picture of them holding your book. Ask them to make a video testimonial and pin it. You will know it was pinned because they can tag you with your “@username” just like in Twitter and Facebook.
Create your own videos and upload them on YouTube. Introduce yourself, your characters, and then pin them. Video is visual and Pinterest is a social media book marking site that thrives on visually appealing images. Just as blog owners are increase traffic to their sites with visually appealing graphics, your pinned visually engaging videos will drive traffic to your YouTube channel. Will tripling your video’s views and growing your channel’s subscriptions by pinning them on Pinterest increase your exposure and selling potential?
Pinning tours are like virtual blogging tours. Again, have visually appealing images on those blog posts for pinning and a “Pin It” button. Invite everyone participating in the blog tour to be part of the “Pinning” tour.
Tours are just like events, make sure your event pages are visually appealing and have “Pin It” buttons.
Make sure there is a “Pin It” button on everything you want to drive traffic to. If you are worried about people taking your images watermark them with a link back to your site.
Author/Fans Collaboration boards – invite people to contribute to your board. This engages and builds a community while you tap into other people’s imaginations. They can ask questions about the characters, vote on their favorites or write an alternative outcome.
Be strategic: If you use key words effectively, making sure your board titles contain key words you increase the already substantial search engine potential of Pinterest.
Make your boards relevant to your main products. If you are promoting a book on furniture repair you would have boards on furniture refinishing paint, another for glue., another for the tools required. Think about what users are looking for when they do what you do.
Pinterest now provides a monthly summary of your most popular pins. This shows what is trending and which board will give you the most return for your time. Clicking on the word Pinterest shows you the recent activity on your boards. Clicking on “Populars” shows you what is trending.
Be Honest: To avoid difficulties with copyright infringements do not repin a pin without including the original source. Do not use photographs from Pinterest on your blogs, often they have passed through many boards, losing the original source as they did. As you cannot crop Pinterest repins it is likely watermarks and signatures will remain with the image. It takes a lot of effort, expensive equipment, travel costs etc. for photographer to create their masterpieces, the least they deserve is credit for their work and a link to their work if one is provided.
Pinterest offers easy to follow instructions. If you have difficulty understanding them turn to you NBF (new best friend) You Tube!! Someone, somewhere, perhaps in South Africa will have prepared a video or slide show to demonstrate how to use every facet of Pinterest effectively.