Biz Ladies: How to Use Pinterest to Grow Your Business, Part I

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Today’s Biz Ladies post comes to us from previous contributor and social media maven, Katrina Padron. As the founder of Padron Social Marketing, an award-winning social media agency with a simple truth ‘You don’t need fans; you need sales’, Katrina offers weekly social media strategies and insights through her website. Today she shares some tips and best practices for using Pinterest to grow your business without being pushy and self promotional. Thanks, Katrina, for this helpful advice! –Stephanie

Read the full post after the jump…

Pinterest rule number 3 says “No Self Promotion.”  But before we even get to that point I know you’re thinking, “I’m on Facebook, Twitter and Google+.  Social media already overwhelms me…do I need to be on Pinterest too?”  Yes, here’s why.

Pinterest is a virtual pinboard. Pinterest allows you to organize and share all the beautiful things you find on the web. You can browse pinboards created by other people to discover new things and get inspiration from people who share your interests.

Pinterest has gained enormous traction. It’s quickly becoming a favorite tool, especially among the design and retail communities because:

  • As of February, Pinterest has 25 million users. (Business Insider)
  • 70 percent of brand engagement on Pinterest is generated by users, not brands. (Digitas)
  • Pinterest shoppers are spending significantly more per checkout averaging between $140-$180 per order compared with consistent $80 and $60 orders for Facebook and Twitter shoppers, respectively. (Rich Relevance)

With that said, we’ve found ways to use Pinterest to grow your business and build your brand all while adhering to Pinterest’s etiquette.

Quite simply, if you are doing work you would love to share, pin it; if your work is inspired by someone or something, pin it; if there is something you personally like, pin it. But let me break this down a little more to make sure you are fully leveraging Pinterest.

How to humanize your brand and why it’s so important

People like to do business with other people they know, like and trust.  Creating boards that show who you are is compelling.  It offers a personal side to your business.  If you are already using personal branding for your business, use Pinterest to take it to the next level. Use boards to showcase your lifestyle – maybe a “Your Style,” “Offices I’d Love to Have,” “Best Books List” or “Dream Vacations.”  These boards help show who you are and give your followers a chance to connect on a personal level with you.

The tip to network with out being pushy and self promotional

Just like any social network, Pinterest is meant to be social.  Social media gives you a unique opportunity to get in front of people you might not reach otherwise. You can connect, comment, like and re-pin just as you do on Facebook and Twitter. As you start doing this, you are putting yourself and your business in front of more people.  The best way to comment is to be genuine and never self promote in someone else’s thread.

What it means to curate content and how to create boards for your target

Curating content means creating boards around a particular idea, category or theme.

This becomes even more of an opportunity when you are 100% clear on your target customer. If you know who your target customer is and what they find entertaining, educational and empowering start creating boards that sit in the sweet spot of what they want and what you are an expert on.  This helps position you as an expert on that content.

Exactly how to optimize your post for more web traffic

Recently, one study showed that Pinterest drives more visitors to third-party websites than Google+, YouTube and LinkedIn combined and in many cases Pinterest is driving more web traffic than Twitter. Each pin is attached to a permalink that takes people directly to the website where it is from.  When you post, be sure the link takes them back to your website where there are opt-in forms or take them to a page where they could purchase, see more items, pin more items or opt in to hear more from you.

Pinterest also wants you include a thoughtful description on your pins. You can include the name of the product, what it was inspired by, price and the link to find it on your website.  For even more exposure, include relevant hashtags and keywords so that your pins show up in searches.

The secrets to frictionless sharing on Facebook and Twitter

Pinterest is set for frictionless sharing with Facebook and sharing on Twitter is beyond easy.  You likely already have a following on Facebook and Twitter.  By sharing your pins directly to those sites you are leveraging your resources and expanding your reach to communities you’ve already built.

To share directly to Facebook sign into Pinterest, click your username at the top-right toolbar, then click Settings. Next, you can add/remove Pinterest to your Facebook Timeline by clicking the slider. ON will add your pins to your Facebook Timeline. OFF will remove Pinterest from your Facebook Timeline.

When you are pinning something you will be able to select which board it is pinned to and then in the lower right corner check the Twitter box.  That will share the pin directly to your Twitter account.

 

There’s even more great ways to grow your business with Pinterest in part 2 that I’ll share next week.  But first, I’d like to know which strategy you are most likely to do first.  Or, if you are already using Pinterest for business, what is working for you?

 

Carrie Harris

For me, the biggest benefit for Pinterest has been the ability to demonstrate my specific style. I try and make sure that all of my pins have the “look” I try and share on my site, so if someone likes my pinboards, hopefully they’ll like my site as well.

Xia Kiethina

Thanks for this, been trying to find legit websites which can help me build my media on, this is a great help and I will take a look now!

kathryn

Pinterest is one of my very favorite social media sights as i am such a visual person. i look forward to reading part II!

daisylovesdesign

Great article, thanks. I always enjoy reading the posts on Biz Ladies. As a creative, I love using Pinterest but haven’t really used it as a networking tool – yet. When I do, I will take heed of all the great points raised in your article. Looking forward to reading Part II.

Shelby

Great post! I love Pinterest and connecting with other people and brands. I always make sure that what I pin is a genuine display of my taste and I definitely think that lets people see, at least visually, what I’m all about. Can’t wait to read part 2!

Tessa O'Donoghue

I also haven’t really used Pinterest as a networking or business tool, however this article provided some great tips I will start using such as humanizing a brand.

Katrina Padron

@Carrie – Very good. Glad to hear you are using it that way!

@FripperyVintage – You’re welcome!

@Xia – You’re most welcome. Best wishes.

@Kathryn – Glad to hear–coming soon!

@DaisyLoveDesign – Good luck to you!

@Shelby – That’s a great point!

margarita

Pinterest is my fav social media channel so far, as it is very visual, I use it to create my mood boards, but I have to admit that is one of the biggest traffics to my site/shop. My images get pinned quite often, and the effect is viral. facebook is good too, but I am not sure how much traffic actually converts into sells. Thanks for the article, it is always good to learn new tips. Regards from cold London. Marga

Louise from TheDasherie.com

Terrific article. I love Pinterest and my personal profile has loads of followers and repins but my business one is scrappy and incoherent and has hardly any followers or repins, and after reading this article I have a much better idea about why. I generally think the advice to “be yourself” is not very good, but in this case I think it’s going to improve my business Pinterest profile hugely. And yes, I too am eagerly looking forward to Part II!

intrigue ink

tall Pinterest posts are always more eye-catching, and the format of a board make them stand apart from your other, “normal” sized pins. Pin Tall. ;)

Sarah

Thanks for this article! I have been looking to get more traffic to my blog via Pinterest, so every now and then I’ll pin a relevant project that has to do with home decor, DIY, before and after, or even recipes. That seems to be boosting my blog traffic.

S+S

We love using Pinterest to promo our classes and the projects we are planning to teach. Its also been invaluable for a secret research project we are releasing in Sept x

Bridget from Refined Vintage

I love Pinterest because it is so visual, I have always felt it was like looking at magazines, all specific to your interests. I have had a personal account for a few years and just converted it to a Business one.

I do not know if it will make a difference or not, I do get traffic from Pins to my online store. I am hoping the switch will increase this as well, but I also wonder if it will affect my followers I already have?

I have always kept true to what I truly love and what Inspires me, I have never pinned just to promote my self or others, I will and do promote others but I have to also like or love the product, everything I pin is a reflection on my taste.

Tamara

Looking forward to part 2 – I am using Pinterest for business but then found someone posting my product and using our email address as theirs, can you let me know about the dangers of identity theft on Pinterest

Jo

Thanks for the article, can’t wait for part 2. I love pinterest and use it often. I’ll go start following your advice right now.

Derek Shenk

I have just started using Pinterest to showcase our Emotional Tracing™ posters and videos. Even though our business is a service, rather than a product, your article gave me the idea to create pin-able pictures that imagine what the results of our service will give you. (a smile, or a happy family, or rehab from addiction, etc.)

Thanks so much for your help in “getting a handle” on how Pinterest fits in with all the other social media. To a “newbie” it can seem overwhelming.

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