With over 200 million active users, Pinterest is a marketing goldmine for businesses. While it’s not the biggest or most popular social media platform, small and mid-sized organizations cannot afford to ignore it as a marketing channel.
Statistics indicate that half of US millennials frequent the platform with a whopping 68% of US women between 25 – 54 actively using the platform.
And it’s not just for women. 40% of new users are men!
Yes. Believe it or not.
The platform offers businesses the opportunity to reach a wider audience. Organizations can showcase their products, services, and ideas. Pinterest, therefore, provides a proven strategy to acquire new leads or customers for your business. The reasons?
- 93% of pinners have used the social network to plan purchases
- Two-thirds of users look at pins while shopping in brick and mortar stores
- Customers use Pinterest to look for ideas on products
- Half of the pinners have made a purchase decision after seeing a promoted pin on the platform
Pinterest for Business – The Basics
Pinterest offers two types of accounts: Personal and Business.
Business profiles come with extra features that are not available on regular personal profiles. Some of these features include:
- Paid advertising to boost your reach
- Ability to create and use rich pins
- Analytics dashboard
Use this short guide from Pinterest to convert your personal account to a business account.
Adhere to Pinterest’s guidelines for commercial use which include:
- Never offer suggestions that Pinterest sponsors or endorses your business
- Never promote spam, e.g., “asking users to comment repeatedly.”
- Do not run sweepstakes
- Don’t run contests or promotions often
Getting people to notice you is a painstaking process that requires knowing your customers and tailoring your Pinterest marketing strategy to their needs.
Here are a few proven strategies to improve your reach and build a more reliable brand.
1. Creating epic pins and boards
Pinterest is a visual platform. Images – called “Pins,” make the bulk of content on the platform.
Making your pins stand out and searchable is a must if you wish to attract the right audience to your business.
So what kind of images work on the platform?
Clear, high-resolution images tend to get more likes and repins compared to pixelated photos. Aim for vertical images with a resolution of the size of about 736* 1102 pixels. Using image creation platforms like Canva or Snappa eliminates the guesswork and ensures you create epic images.
Here’s an example:
You can view others on my Pinterest account.
Also, aim for images with lighter tones. They tend to get more repins and attention compared to dark-toned images.
Finally, keep it simple. Let the image speak for itself without crowding it with barely illegible text.
To recap, aim for:
- Lighter images
- Clear, high-resolution photos
- Optimal image size of 736 * 1102 pixels
- Pictures with no faces
- Tall rather than wide images
- Minimal text in the image. Keep it simple
Boards on Pinterest form an essential block where you can collect related images or ideas. Users have the option to either follow a specific board or your entire profile.
To create a board:
- Log into your Pinterest profile
- Go to the boards’ tab and click on the red plus sign
- Create and name your board
- Limit the name to 20 characters and include relevant keywords
Go ahead and add other details to your board, including choosing a category and a description for the board.
While the board carries the image, the description space gives you a chance to talk about what the board is about and possibly also include searchable keywords.
2. Create or join a group(s) board
Group boards work like regular boards. The only difference is that group boards allow multiple people to pin images.
They go by different names such as collaborative boards, community boards, shared boards, etc. Regardless of the name, group boards have numerous advantages over regular boards. These include:
- Increased engagement
- More repins
- Exposure to a broader audience
- Better content variation
Group boards are identifiable by the group sign at the top of a board.
To create a group board:
- Click on the red + on your profile
- Click Create board
- Choose a name for your board
- Finally, decide who you want to add as a contributor.
You can search for contributors using their email addresses or their usernames. Added users will be notified through email or notification with an invitation or prompt to join Pinterest if they aren’t members already.
To join an existing shared board, contact the owner, or follow the instructions on the board’s description or bio section.
3. Choose the right keywords
Pinterest SEO works almost the same way as other search engines. You need the right keywords to make your content searchable.
Luckily, the rules that apply to other platforms work on Pinterest too. The first being – don’t overdo it. Keyword stuffing will get you penalized.
So, how do you do it?
There are numerous places you can deploy keywords on Pinterest. They include:
- Business name section
- Profile bio section
- Board names and descriptions
- Pin headers and descriptions
Use the search bar autocomplete feature on the platform to see what people are searching for and get a feel for possible keywords.
You can also use other tools like Google Ads Keyword Planner to generate keyword ideas.
Use long-tail keywords that have little to no competition.
Only add relevant keywords to your boards and descriptions. For example, use keywords in your username, bio, and after your business name.
A keyword gives people an idea of what you do, what your board is about, and makes it easily searchable.
4. Utilize promoted and rich pins
“Promoted Pins” are Pinterest’s version of paid advertising. Running an ad campaign makes your paid pin or image appear in users’ feeds when searching in relevant categories or through search.
Unlike other platforms like Facebook, where you’re trying to generate interest, most Pinterest users are already in the buying cycle, which makes it easier appealing to them.
Surveys indicate that advertisers get an average of 20% more organic clicks in the month following the launch of a Pinterest campaign ad, demonstrating a high return on invested marketing funds.
Promoted pins come in four flavors.
- Traffic campaigns where you pay for clicks to your site
- Campaigns to create awareness where you pay for 1000 impressions
- Campaigns to generate engagement charge for actions like repins, clicks, etc
- Promoted pin campaigns, e.g., when promoting an app and paying for downloads.
You must have a Pinterest business account to create a promoted pin. Here are the steps:
- Click “Business Hub” in the top right-hand corner under your name
- Choose campaign type and set a maximum lifetime budget
- Add details to your ad and select the relevant audiences (you can target users based on location, gender, languages, etc.)
- Pick relevant keywords
- Set your bid maximum
- Pick a pin to promote, name it, add URL, click “promote pin,” and wait for your ad to run.
To get the most from your promoted pins:
- Use targeted keywords
- Pick high-quality, and Pinterest optimized images
- Front Load your image description (5-10 words) with only the most critical information
Rich Pins use metadata pulled from your site to provide snippets of information about what users should expect to find when they click on a pin.
You can use Rich Pins to promote or feature apps, products, recipes, articles, etc.
For articles, for example, rich pins feature the article headline, name of the author, a snippet of the post, etc.
Here’s an example for a Forbes article:
Follow this Pinterest guide to create a rich pin. It’s a two-step process:
- Step 1 – Add metadata to content on your site
- Step 2 – Apply for Rich Pins through the Pinterest platform by verifying and validating your chosen URL.
According to Pinterest, you only need to validate 1 URL to apply Rich Pins to your entire domain.
5. Captivate both fans and followers
Pinterest is a social networking platform. Most businesses make the mistake of treating it like a purely advertising platform, and then wonder why they see no traction.
For the best results, moderate self-promotion with information and educating or sharing other people’s content. You’ll go further and attract a wider audience when you engage with others on the platform.
Here are the tactics you can use to boost engagement and grow your audience:
- Pin regularly. Aim for 5 – 30 pins daily spread out over the day. Use social media management platforms like Tailwinds or Buffer to schedule and space posts.
- Use the 80/20 rule when pinning. 80% of your pins and repins should be other people’s content, with the 20% being your content.
- Pick the best times to post on Pinterest. SocialFresh recommends 2 PM – 4 PM EST and 8 PM – 1 AM EST. Hubspot, on the other hand, recommends Saturday mornings.
- Pin consistently, at least once per day, in the evenings and weekends
- Follow and comment on popular boards and pins.
- Optimize your pins for mobile. 80% of users access Pinterest on mobile devices
Pinterest for business is a unique marketing avenue. Following the strategies above, you can build a larger audience and attract more leads to your business.
Give it a try and happy pinning!