How to prime your business for Pinterest

August 27, 2012

New kid on the block Pinterest has been raising eyebrows with its astronomical growth over the last few months. A report from ComScore stated that Pinterest recently reached 11.7 million unique visitors, making it the fastest growing standalone social media platform ever. Back in November Monetate already reported the site was the 5th largest source of referral traffic amongst social networking sites, and has become the top driver of traffic for retailerswomen’s magazines, and blogs.

Pinterest functions around the idea that people like to connect with like-minded peers around certain topics; food, clothes, cars etc. Pinterest differentiates itself from current platforms by providing a new way of sharing; allowing users to create and share photo boards (pinboards). It also offers the option of following a user and all their associated pinboards, or simply following selected pinboards.

This provides two main considerations; how can businesses utilise Pinterest when the platform focuses on mainly sharing photos? And how can we take advantage of the fact that users can follow others or just certain pinboards?

How can we communicate effectively only using photos?

So what if your product isn’t particularly photogenic? Or what if you are trying to connect with other businesses? How can you achieve this through pictures?

The emphasis here is to develop and share the lifestyle or culture surrounding your product, instead of simply communicating about brand developments.

For example, if you’re an agency or consultancy with a business clientele, consider pinning things like graphs, charts or visual statistics from your industry. Infographics are hugely popular on Pinterest and widely shared throughout corporate communities.
One of the great shifts that has come from applications like Instagram and Pinterest is that they have forced us to look at the visual elements that revolve around our businesses and use them to tell stories. For example, we can now see images from all the fantastic holidaysthat have been made possible by STA Travel, and all of the cool things that the team at Sportsdigita (a digital agency for professional sports teams) gets up to in their daily lives.

The Pinterest platform forces business to focus on creating genuine content around brand relevant topics. This is a blessing for those who are keenly interested in providing high quality social media content and improving their social credibility.

Andrew Lipman from ComScore says “You don’t want to be seen as inauthentic and seen as just pushing your product.”

Follow people or pinboards?

The platform also gives users the option to either follow a user, or simply follow a selected user’s pinboard. This allows you to visually separate the sections of your business, its different product offerings or the different elements of its service into different pinboards; meaning more effective targeting and communication with key customer segments.

In simple terms if you are an apparel brand selling girls and boys t-shirts you are able to create pinboards for each specific product line, allowing users to be far more selective about the brand content they choose to follow, as supposed to being exposed to a generalised message.

Pinterest is certainly recommended for any business that is passionate about connecting with customers and sharing ideas in a visual way.

As always if you have any questions about how your brand can become more visible in the online space or if you have some ‘pinteresting’ insights into Pinterest developments please have a chat to us in the comments here or on our Facebook Page, we are always excited to discover new views and opinions surrounding social media.