How to use Pinterest for business
Pinterest offers your business the chance to connect with customers during the decision-making process in a creative way. Learn how here
Pinterest is a social media platform that allows users (known as pinners) to collect and curate images to share on boards. It’s a way for people to gather inspiring content from across the internet and store it in one central location, which can be shared with others too.
Generally, people use Pinterest to get ideas or advice – it’s a way to show the world what you’re interested in, as well as to discover new content and items that match your interests.
Pinterest is one of the major social media networks, and businesses can use it too. Pinterest for business accounts allow brands to reach and connect with customers in the research stage, as a way of providing the inspiration and advice that the platform is well-known for.
While your business may know it’s necessary to have a social media strategy for Facebook or Twitter, Pinterest can often receive less time and attention in your strategy. However, it’s a platform that offers plenty of marketing opportunities, especially in the long-term.
We’ll provide more information about how businesses can use Pinterest, as well as a step-by-step guide to incorporating it into your marketing plan.
In this article, we’ll cover:
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1. How does Pinterest work?
Pinterest is a visual social media platform – it’s all about creating, sharing and collecting inspirational images and videos.
What types of images should you use?
- Vertical images work best
- Use one or more images in each pin
- Colourful images with varying shades
- Infographics and visuals that teach people how to do something
- Custom board covers with your own SEO-friendly content
While any image could be pinned, photos depicting lifestyle scenes and without people tend to do better in terms of ranking.
All images used on Pinterest should be optimised, so that means cropped to fit the specific dimensions – images are portrayed vertically, with a 600 pixels by 600 pixels aspect.
They should also be compressed, meaning the file size is made smaller so the image can load quicker on a page.
To improve your business’ ranking on the site, you should have a profile image – this could be of your company’s logo or of you, the founder.
Note that if you run a business you will need to go to the business sign-up page specifically. A business Pinterest account is necessary to access the e-commerce and analytics aspects of Pinterest, plus ensure your company is correctly represented.
If you already have a personal Pinterest account, it’s possible to convert this to a business account.
A key difference is that the link to your Pinterest business page will be your business name, whereas with a personal account it’s your name.
How to pin
You can pin content manually. Or, you can install the Pinterest button that will appear in your browser bar so you can pin images and add them to your boards more easily and quickly.
You can also add Pinterest widgets to your website so that people can easily access your page from your website too.
It’s important to be active – schedule content, comment on other pages and pin images to your board.
What information should you include?
When completing your profile description and board title, be sure to include relevant keywords. These are words or phrases that people would type into a search engine to find your business. You should consider search engine optimisation (SEO) to help your business’ page rank more highly in search results.
A pin source and description can include links, so this is the perfect opportunity to connect to your blog or website.
2. Why use Pinterest for business?
Now that you’ve learned how to use Pinterest, it’s time to dive deeper into understanding why your business should be on this platform, including what the potential benefits are.
The key point to remember is that Pinterest is not just another way of displaying your products – it’s about sharing knowledge and building a community.
Some of the most popular categories on Pinterest include:
Although Pinterest is known for providing inspiration for crafts, fitness, fashion, interior design and travel in particular, it’s essential to find out if your target audience in your sector uses Pinterest.
Plus, while the majority of Pinterest users are women, the proportion of men who use the site is growing, so consider this when deciding your strategy. Whoever you target audience is, the content you share has to be aligned with your company values and brand identity.
Also, Pinterest offers the collaborative boards function, where you can edit and pin a board, with the additional option of inviting other people to contribute to it too. You may wish to let your other team members share content that inspires them.
Or, you could reach out to social media influencers in your field and collaborate with them as a special project. Alternatively, you could open it up to your customers, allowing you to share with – and learn from – them directly.
If your business already has its own website or blog, you can create pinnable images on those platforms, so people can find your Pinterest through those sources too. Plus, if someone repins your image, the credit will go back to your page as the original source.
What are the benefits of using a Pinterest for business account?
- Free to create an account
- Blogs and webinars are available for learning how to use the site
- Option to sync your online shop so purchases can be made without leaving Pinterest
- Able to use paid advertising (promoted pins) to expand your reach
Note that promoted pins and analytics are only available with a business account.
Ultimately though, the best way to see if your business should use Pinterest is to sign up, start pinning and then use the built-in analytics tools to scrutinise your page performance. You’ll be able to identify patterns and trends to show you what is, or isn’t, working for your business.
3. How to use Pinterest for business marketing
In this section, we’re going to provide you with some top tips for using Pinterest for business marketing.
- Have a clear aim – pins should always intend to inspire and lead to action
- Find your niche – identify who your customers are and market to them specifically
- Be in it for the long-haul – Pinterest offers the opportunity for long-term reach and engagement
- Use themes – your boards could be based around seasons or trends, or connected by a common concept
- Run competitions – offer the chance for your customers to get involved with curating boards to increase connection with your business
- Know when to post – in general, avoid posting during the work day. Instead, it’s preferable to post in the afternoon, evening and weekends on Pinterest
- Connect to other social media platforms – Pinterest should be part of a wider strategy so be sure to align your business’ social media profiles
- Focus on context – while Pinterest offers the opportunity to market products directly to your customers, you’ll need to show people how it can be used or what impact it can have
- Provide connections – although people are on Pinterest to discover new things themselves, this doesn’t mean you can’t prompt them. Think about what is related to your products and create boards around this content too
- Create a schedule – posting consistently is crucial on Pinterest (as it is on other social media sites), so use a scheduling system, such as Hootsuite, to stay on top of your business’ page activity
- Keep your page updated – it’s possible to archive boards if the content is no longer relevant, such as a closed competition or past event
- Optimise for mobile – with 80% of pinners using a mobile device, be sure that your content is easily viewable and shareable on phones and tablets
- Enhance your pins – maximise the pins you create by making them ‘buyable’ (allowing you to sell directly on Pinterest) or ‘rich’ (for specific use on an app, article, product or recipe)
- Interact with your community – you can like or comment on pins to create a conversation between your business and your customers
What are the next steps?
By reading this article, you’ve learned more about how your business can use Pinterest to connect with, and market to, customers. We’ve provided a step-by-step guide to signing up for a Pinterest business account, as well as detailing why and how it can be used for marketing purposes.
So after learning the key steps you need to take to use Pinterest for business, where do you go from here? The next step is to take what you’ve learned and put it into practice. This means you should create an account and starting pinning – good luck!