Quick-start Pinterest Tips for the Visual Entrepreneur

Chances are, you’ve heard of Pinterest by now.  It is one of the fastest-growing social networks online at the moment and is used by over 20 million people – men and women alike – to make plans or find ideas for everything from their wardrobes, vacations, house renovations, weddings, to anything else where visual inspiration and organizing plays a role.

Something you may not know is that a recent Shopify study found that:

  •  Pinterest already refers the same amount of traffic to e-commerce sites as Twitter.
  • 1 in 5 Pinterest users actually buy the things they pin to their Pinterest boards and spend an average of $80 when they do buy.

Having a basic Pinterest strategy can help you get your product, or even service-based, business in front of potential customers, and help them envision how your business could fit into their lives.

1.  Create an account.

Having an account is the first step to letting you pin content to boards (like a virtual bulletin board) that you can organize by topic.  It will also let you share your pins on Facebook and Twitter and connect with other Pinterest users. To sign up, you either need to be invited to create an account, or request an invitation from Pinterest directly.  Read this LKR post on how to set up your Pinterest account.

2.  Create Pinterest boards that reflect your business’s vibe or related ideas, not just what you sell.

Think about your business and what it stands for; help others see this by pinning content – your own or from other sites – to bulletin boards that reflect the inspiration behind what you do or ideas that help them envision your services or product in action.

This might mean pinning images whose themes reflect what your business is all about, sewing projects readers can make with the material you sell, homes for sale that you represent by region, recipe ideas from your blog, destinations you can arrange travel to, rooms that show how your art can be used as a design element, resources you refer to in your work, etc.

3.  Make your website Pinterest-friendly by giving readers something to share.

People pin what they can see…it’s hard to do that if your web pages only have text on them.  Illustrate your blog posts and pages on your site with appealing images.  Take great pictures!  Not a photographer?  Make a simple graphic using word processing software that includes a quote, a tip from the page or post you put the image on, an infographic with information about what you do, the cover image of a document you have on your site, or any other visuals that are interesting, inspiring, or remind people  what they are pinning, as well as your website’s URL or company name.

Include key words in the image file name when you save it, e.g. WaysToPlayWithFoodMaoomba.jpg so Pinterest includes them in the pin’s description. Note: Be sure to only alter images for your site that you have copyright permission to use.

4.  Encourage people to pin your content.

Make it easy for people to pin content from your site by adding a sharing tool or “pin it” button to your web pages.   Do this by using a pin it button plugin for your blog, using a social sharing plugin or service like AddThis, or you can do it manually by following the instructions in the “Pin it Button” for Websites section of the Pinterest Goodies page.  Using Pinterest’s code lets you invite people to pin a specific image and gives you the ability to include a pin description that highlights your business, uses keywords, and includes your username, etc.

5.  Connect with people.

Actively connect with other pinners that you find interesting and with pinners whom you think would be interested in your pins.  Do this by following them (or just their boards that interest you), liking or commenting on pinned images, and repinning their “pins” to your own boards as a way to remember or share with others.

You can encourage people to connect with you by sharing your Pinterest profile page URL on other social networks (it will look like this http://pinterest.com/yourusername/) or by adding a Pinterest badge to your site that takes them to your profile page there.  You can add a badge by logging in to Pinterest, going to the “Follow Button” for Websites section of the Pinterest Goodies page, and clicking on the button type you’d like to use.  It will give you an HTML code that you can copy and paste into your website’s sidebar or other visible area so that people can easily find and follow you on Pinterest.

For more information on Pinterest and SEO (search engine optimization), check out LKR’s blog post here!

Interested in becoming a Pinterest guru? LKR Social Media Marketer members get free access to Zero to Pinterest and other social media courses that are always updated!

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