Four ideas for getting started on Pinterest

Don’t know what Pinterest is? You should.

In just 3 years Pinterest has become the 3rd largest social networking website in the world. In July 2012 Pinterest recorded more than 23 million unique visitors and 1.7 billion page views worldwide (comScore), and it seems Pinterest has the ability to turn those visits into sales, making it a retailers’ best new marketing tool.

At its core Pinterest helps people collect and organize the things they love. Users ‘pin’ images of products, clothing, inspiring ideas, recipes, instructions and more onto their account pages known as ‘boards’. The boards are grouped by theme and other users with similar tastes may access them to be inspired or ‘repin’ the item.

According to a new Bizrate report 69% of online consumers who visit Pinterest have found an item they’ve purchased or wanted to purchase as compared to only 40% of online consumers who visit Facebook. So how can you capitalize on Pinterest’s success?

Here are four ideas for getting started on Pinterest:

1. Use Great Images

Pinterest is primarily a visual bulletin board. People visit the site to be inspired. Take professional, high resolution photos and use those on your website and boards for people to repin. Images don’t have to be limited to products either, pinners love DIY tutorials! But remember to “tell the whole story” – while a close up photo might be beautiful if it doesn’t convey enough information users may be inclined not to repin it.

For example: if you’re selling paint stripper don’t just pin photos of the product. Take a before-and-after shot of a door after your product has removed the paint. Pinterest users doing home DIY will take notice.

 

2. Add a ‘Pin It’ Button to Your Website

pin-it
By adding a Pin It button to your website, people can use it to pin your stuff to their Pinterest boards. This opens it up to thousands of people who can then repin those things or click back to your website. Place the Pin it button next to things you want to share and let users do the rest.

3 months after Allrecipes.com added the Pin It button, people pinned more than 50,000 recipes from their website. This lead to 139 million Pinterest impressions!

3. Engage Users With a Contest


Great photos and ideas can get people repining but having engaged followers is key to Pinterest success. Why not create a contest that gets users sharing your content?

Better Homes and Gardens invited Pinterest users to create a ‘My Better Homes and Gardens Dream Home’ board to compete for $5,000 in cash prizes in a ‘Pin & Win‘ contest. Users then curated their board with interior and exterior pictures from the Better Homes and Garden website and the winner was selected by judges appointed by BH&G. The competition which ran March 6 to May 4 2012, attracted more than 11,400 new Pinterest fans for the brand.


4. Make Use of Analytics

Use Pinterest’s new Analytics dashboard to find out how many people are pinning from your website, seeing your pins, and clicking your content. You’ll also be able to see recent pins and your most repinned content of all time, so that you can get a sense both of what is currently trending and what your most popular items are overall.

To get analytics set up for yourself, verify your website with Pinterest and then click Analytics in the top-right menu under your name.

 

‘Fast’ vs ‘slow’ marketing

You may have heard of fast and slow food but have you heard of fast and slow marketing?  Here’s a quick breakdown of the concept as well and 6 proven marketing ideas you can use today.

Fast Marketing

fast-marketingIn business you are often faced with the pressure to get fast results from various marketing pursuits. You want to do things that will make new sales quickly, often within the space of mere days or just a few weeks. This is known as ‘fast’ marketing.

This type of marketing often has deadline dates, or an incentive that encourages your audience to do something right now or in the immediate future. It can prove very successful but you have to regularly come up with the next idea to continue the momentum.

Apart from the obvious benefit of generating quick revenue, fast marketing also allows you to better track what campaigns work and which ones don’t. If you don’t get the response you’re looking for learn from it and try something new.

Slow Marketing

Slow marketing on the other hand is when you’re not looking for an instant sale but instead building personal relationships with people. The relationship you create leads to future sales when that person has need you can fill, or when they personally recommend your business. We all know the power of word-of-mouth.

Slow marketing has longterm results and can be incredibly important in establishing your brand’s reputation. Without slow marketing in the mix you run the risk of your business being too focussed on sales and fads.

Which Type of Marketing is Better?

In reality both types of marketing need to be in the mix to build a successful business. You want to regularly be doing things that boost revenue quickly, as well as building lasting connections with people.

Ideas for Fast Marketing

  • Hold a competition with an incentive for customers to take action now. For a low cost solution advertise it on your website and Facebook page.
  • Email, phone or send mail outs to previous clients and give them a good reason to spend money with you now.
  • Hold a VIP night at your store. Supply some food and wine and let your guests and their friends be first to see and buy new products. Fashion and beauty stores might invite stylists or make-up artists to give personal advice to your guests. The more personal attention you give to your guests the more this promotion will also cross-over into slow marketing.
  • Take the “popcorn chicken” approach and advertise special products that are available for a limited time only.


Ideas for Slow Marketing

  • Introduce yourself to complimentary services in your industry. For example: a florist in the wedding industry might build a relationship with a wedding dress store, photographer or make-up artist who will then be inclined to recommend you to new brides.
  • Hold a free workshop. Holding an event without a focus on sales establishes you as a thought-leader. A well prepared and thoughtful presentation is a sure fire way to build reputation.


What To Do Now

Look at the sales activities you employ in your business and see where the balance of your marketing lies. If you’re relying too heavily on either ‘slow’ or ‘fast’ marketing come up with 5 new ideas to get the balance right.