If you do Facebook, or keep up at all with what is going on with the world of social media, you probably know about Pinterest. Right now, it is the hottest thing going. Pinterest lets you set up virtual boards on which you pin images you collect by visiting Web pages, or by re-pinning items that other Pinterest users have already pinned. It’s a lot of fun, but our question here is: Does it have value from an Internet marketing standpoint? The answer is yes, although certain types of business may be a more natural fit for the Pinterest concept.
Pinterest is visual. It’s pictures. Therefore, any type of business that sells visually interesting products is a natural. For instance, I am somewhat of a collector of guitars and amps (much to my wife’s chagrin), so I have a board with pictures of items that are in my collection. If I had some kind of business related to guitars, such as selling vintage guitars, I could do this same thing to actually display what I had for sale. Sure, there are lots of places where you could display my inventory online, but why not go where the people are? Anything related to visual arts or crafts is also a natural fit for Pinterest.
As soon as I created my Pinterest account, I noticed that people started following me. Many were people that I knew from Facebook. Some were people that I had never heard of. I would advise that before you use Pinterest, you begin maintaining a Facebook account and build up a nice friend list. Then segue into Pinterest.
The trick to getting material into your Pinterest account is to install the Pin It button from the Pinterest interface on your bookmarks menu. Then you are on a page you would like to pin, you just click the button. Before you start pinning, you should set up your boards. Going back to our vintage guitar dealer example, maybe he has a Fender board, a Gibson board, and a Peavey board. Or maybe he just has one board for everything. Either way, he needs to have a board on which to place his pins. When he selects something to pin, he will choose a board on which to place it.
Like most of the social media sites, you should follow others as well as having people follow you. And you should pin interesting things from others’ boards onto your own. The more social you make it, the more exposure you will get.
If you are a service business, you may wonder if you have any use for Pinterest. The answer is yes. You don’t just have to pin “things.” You can pin content as well (the pin itself will still be a picture, but it will link to the content). But if you pin something like that, it should be interesting.
We’ve just skimmed the surface, but if you are the type that like to look for every advantage, you should give Pinterest a try. But my advice is to not just approach it from the standpoint of a way to promote your business, but really get into it. Have fun with it.