Take a close look at the following metrics associated with the Web’s latest wunderkind:
- 1.36 million visitors per day.
- 2,702.2% increase in unique visitors over the past ten months.
- 68.2% female users.
- 44.7% of users aged 18-34.
Sound like an audience you’d like to get in touch with? If you want to tap into the fastest growing social network to date, Pinterest has 12 million users who are ready and waiting. The ever-growing and uber-addicted Pinterest fans have taken this virtual bulletin board from a lowly startup to Internet darling in only two years.
If you think Pinterest is only for soccer moms and wedding planners, you’re missing out on a largely-untapped audience of consumers. While the middle-aged female demographic largely overwhelms the site’s userbase, Pinterest’s rapid growth pattern indicates that it is far from done attracting users.
Ready to get pinning? Here are 8 essential (and easy!) steps to be successful on Pinterest:
1. Jump on the bandwagon. As we’ve established, this is one social media marketing channel that is absolutely worth getting involved in. Already have an account? Great! Not signed up yet? Leave your email address in the comments below to get an invite.
2. Create killer boards. Establish boards that focus on lifestyles, not products. Dig deep and decide what the real ethos of your company is, and then create a board that projects your given character trait. Whole Foods gets to the heart of their consumers’ eco-friendly attitudes with a “We’re Used to Reusing!” board while the Travel Channel appeals to followers’ sense of adventure with “Daily Escapes.” Centering boards around a specific feeling or style (which may or may not happen to include your company’s products) will be far more effective than attempting to make one more sales pitch.
3. Link your accounts. Link your Pinterest account to a personal or company Facebook Timeline where your pins will be housed in a Pinterest app. All of your recent pins will appear in one consolidated Pinterest box on your Timeline which makes it easy for your fans to click through from one profile to another.
4. Beef up your captions. The success of an individual pin (determined by the level of engagement it receives) can be predicted almost solely upon the level of visual interest it offers. However, these images will be seen without any of the context provided on their original pages. A caption that captures the interesting/alluring/charming nature of the photo will increase its “sharability.” While you don’t need to provide a web address (it automatically appears under the photo when pinned), include a dollar amount in the caption and Pinterest will add a price tag to the image.
5. Check your existing footprint. Big brands and sites with lots of existing photography may likely already have some of their content “pinned” across user profiles. See if your images, products or photos have caught the eye of pinners by using the following URL (replace “yoursitename.com” with your homepage’s address): http://pinterest.com/source/yoursitename.com/.
6. Reward top pinners. One of the coolest (and also most under-utilized) features of Pinterest is the ability to create collaborative boards with your followers. If tip #5 resulted in a list of people who have regularly posted content from your site, create a board on your profile dedicated to these brand ambassadors. To do so: 1) Follow the profiles of your top users. It doesn’t matter if they follow you back 2) Create a new board or edit an existing one and next to “Who can pin?” select “Me + Contributors” 3) In the field that appears, begin typing the name of your desired contributor; click on their name when it appears 4) Save settings and you’re done! Your board will now appear on your profile as well as the profiles of all contributors. Contributor boards work best when there is a unifying theme for everyone to collaborate around, such as the “Critic’s Corner” board where contributors write reviews of recipes found on Pinterest.
7. Embrace keyword usage. Pinterest’s search function is heavily utilized, especially for recipes, home goods, decorating, style and event planning. If your area of expertise lies anywhere in these domains, it is especially important to include relevant keywords in your captions. A Mashable post from last month announced that Pinterest is driving more referral traffic than YouTube, Google+ or LinkedIn, reinforcing the potential of Pinterest to send high-value visits directly to your product pages.
8. Make your content Pinnable. Anyone who has spent more than five minutes cruising through Pinterest boards will get a definitely feel for the community’s sense of style. If you don’t already, make sure to include engaging, interesting photos on your website and blog which lend themselves to the network’s vibe. While people are able to pin images from any website, adding a “Pin It” button to images adds a subtle invitation for web visitors to share your content.
Have more “Pin-teresting” tips to share? Leave them in the comments below!