Last time we talked, I was raving about Pinterest, the new darling of the social media world, and why it’s such a big deal. But if you wanted the download on how brands should leverage this pintastic momentum, it’s your lucky day! Here’s a handful of tactics we’ve already gotten traction with here at The Cyphers Agency.
Set your objectives.
Like any other marketing tactic, your approach needs to line up with your strategy. What’s the end game for you? It’s easy to track site traffic from Pinterest with Google Analytics, and this is a no-brainer of a benchmark to use. But more than site traffic, it’s important to think about your overall desires. You should shoot for lots of interaction and repins galore if brand awareness is your aim, but not so much if you need straight sales. Instead, track who is checking out at your online store, if they came from Pinterest, and which pins were able to seal the deal.
Create a branded Pinterest account.
When exploring a new social network, it’s easy to think: “I’ll just stick my toe in, test the waters, before we commit to a plan…” But that’s a rookie mistake. The second you decide to create a Joe’s Plummer Pinterest account, you must assume that anyone searching your business’ name will discover it. You don’t want their first impression to be one that isn’t aligned with your brand. So plan out your copy, your look and your approach the way you would any new marketing initiative.
Spread the word!
Once you go live, one of the best ways to create an audience on a fledging platform is to recruit your enthusiasts on your more established platforms. Tell your Facebook fans and Twitter followers that you are on Pinterest, and include the news in your next email blast as well.
Do a test run.
Now what about that content? When you are first starting out, it makes sense to test-run a variety of pins to see what sticks. As with all social media content, we recommend 25-50% promotional stuff, with the other 50-75% of your material curated from other sources. Of course, all of this should be on-brand. Whole Foods does a great job of pinning their own recipes and products from their website, as well as repinning things their audience is into – from recycled products to gardening tips.
Make sure your pins are SEO’d.
Especially when you are first establishing your audience, you should make it as easy as possible for folks to find your pins. That means using a clear description along with each and every pin with plenty of keywords. The principles of search engine optimization apply within Pinterest, but optimized pins will help you out on Google and the other big boys, too.
Let your audience lead the way.
Once your test run is in full swing, track which pins are receiving the most likes and repins to shape your content strategy going forward. Also, it’s super easy to see what from your website is really taking off on the Pinterwebs. Just type http://pinterest.com/source/your URL into your address bar, and you’ll see all the pins coming from your website. You’ll be able to know exactly what pinners love, so you can create more content for your website that folks can’t wait to pin.
Speaking of pinnable content, make sure that all your online content lends itself to the very visual format of Pinterest. Since the platform is all about images, make sure that your images are crisp, attention-grabbing and easily understood. While this is a must for the images you share on Pinterest, it’s important for all the images you share, period, if you want to have a pin-friendly brand.
Give your website the “Pin It” button makeover.
The most surefire way to entice folks to pin your stuff? Add “Pin It” buttons to your website, both to your blog content and any products or services you highlight. That way, you make it easier for your customers to bookmark you and seal the deal later, and tell all their friends while they’re at it.
Let’s cut to the chase.
There’s a multitude of ways to implement Pinterest for your business – someone’s probably thought of a few more while I wrote this. But the takeaway really is: Start off on the right foot, don’t be afraid to try a few different things, and measure it along the way. And have some fun – I know I am!