With 70 million users and 80 percent of that audience represented by women, Pinterest is an emerging platform and the premier social destination for planners and organizers alike. Moreover, its users spend up to three times more money than those on other social sites, meaning plenty of potential customers are just waiting for the right pin to cross their path.
With a rapidly growing base of people who are constantly sharing, creating web links, and social proof about your business -- from retailers to roofing contractors to beauty salons – almost any business can benefit from an active presence on Pinterest.
Pinterest presents some distinct opportunities for businesses that other social networks can't provide:
To capture consumer attention via Pinterest and use the site for further lead generation and website traffic, follow a few tips to help grow your base of followers.
Start developing a following. Help people find your business on Pinterest by creating an account and verifying your website. You should also add the "Pin It" button to your website next to other social buttons -- Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn -- so that it is easy to create pins via your website or blog.
Social media is not a space where you can simply advertise using hard-sell tactics and expect people to respond. Lowe's Build it! Pinterest board has great examples of how to connect well with the community. The page doesn't endorse the company's own goods and just features items that people can make using tools that they can purchase at a Lowe's hardware store.
In order to gain the trust of online users, you have to make them see how your products can benefit their lives beyond physical characteristics. Good content drives sales. Make sure that everything you post is relevant and helpful to your specific niche. How-to guides and specific examples work best.
Pinterest is a great place to display testimonials and demonstrate your good work through visuals. Builders or contractors can utilize the site to show new homes, or local restaurants might share a new creative dish. By linking the pins to their websites, businesses will drive more site traffic and provide more detail about the projects to potential customers.
Your social media strategy has to be diverse enough to reach as many people as possible. While sites like Facebook and Twitter continue to dominate the social networking space, it's important to keep your attention on growing networks like Pinterest so that your brand can be exposed to the greatest number of consumers.
Chris Marentis is CEO at Surefire Social.
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