Pinterest: Love It or Hate It, It’s Time to Monetize It.
February 22nd, 2012 by John Bracamontes
Pinterest. Love it or hate it, you have definitely at least heard of it.
Pinterest has been growing traction and users like wildfire through late 2011 and early 2012. It seems every day I receive multiple alerts that friends and family have signed-up to the service and have begun following my boards.
Wait. Should I back-up? Let me explain how Pinterest works. Pinterest is a visual bookmarking and social sharing site. As opposed to other long-popular bookmarking sites like Delicious and Digg, where users largely save and tag URLs and Web pages, users on Pinterest “clip” and copy actual images and graphics. Each user creates boards to organize their clips under pins. Users may have boards for Dream Wedding, Clothes I Must Own, or Recipes to Try. Boards separate the visuals into easily digestible buckets both for the user and for other people who may want to view the user’s pins.
As I surf the internet, if I find something I like and want to access easily later I can ‘pin’ it to one of my boards. I can also view the boards and pins of people I follow on Pinterest, or surf the most popular pins by all users of the service. It’s a great way to be introduced to new websites, learn what your friends are into at the moment (Sally is learning to knit?), and discover new trends.
Naturally, as social media marketers, our thoughts turn to how a business or company can monetize Pinterest. The platform is bursting with opportunity. Ready to get started?
- Reviewing the Pinterest HELP page. It outlines the basics for using the site, as well as tips such as adding a price to a pin or mentioning a Pinterest User. Settle in with a nice cup of coffee and read Copyblogger’s 56 Ways to Market on Pinterest.
- Determine how Pinterest will intersect with the rest of your social media marketing. Build ‘pinning’ into your Editorial Calendar. (Tip – pins over time are more valuable than a bunch of pins at once. Think about a newsfeed and the coverage you can receive.)
- Just as with any new social media network, there’s no trick to learning: just do it. Sign-up with a personal account first to dip your toe in, then create your business account. That ensures less missteps as you learn the platform. (Tip – you sign-up to Pinterest by using either your Facebook or Twitter logins. As a business, you will need to use your Twitter login because Facebook will try to synch to your personal account.)
- Spend a lunch hour doing competitive intelligence. What are others doing that would make sense for your business? We love Sprout Insight’s 5 Brands Using Pinterest Brilliantly as a starting point for brands to follow.
Finally, as an early adopter, have fun with it! It’s so early in Pinterest’s adoption as part of the marketing mix that it’s easy to be a rock star and really drive significant traffic to your website. Put the customer’s interest first and have fun!
PS – Still waiting for an invite to join Pinterest? Hit me up on Twitter @JennyDibble with your email address and I’ll send you a personal invite to join ASAP!