Is Pinterest the right place for my business?

Pinterest is a unique, albeit large, community of members. It may not be the ideal social networking site for your business. Here are a few questions to ask before you integrate Pinterest into your social media marketing strategy.

Are My Prospects / Target Market On Pinterest?

The majority of users are female on Pinterest. According to the Modea.com Pinterest infographic, 68.2% of the users are female. The most popular age bracket for users is 24-34, though 35-44 comes in with a 17.9% share. 50% of users have children and a median household income of $100,000. Does that sound like your target audience?  If it does then you’d better jump on the Pinterest bandwagon quickly!

How do My Prospects Use Pinterest?

According to the above mentioned Modea study, users stay on the site almost 16 minutes each time they visit and many people visit several times a day. “Pinning” has become something people do during lunch breaks and while they’re watching television at night or waiting in a queue (yes, there’s a fab iPhone app).
There are several ways you can use Pinterest. The most popular way is to browse existing pins and boards and to repin images to your own board. Additionally, when you join Pinterest you can install a “Pin This” tool to your browser. This makes it easy to pin images to your board when you’re visiting other sites and see an image you want to collect.

 

For example, if you’re redecorating your kitchen and you’re browsing the web for appliances, countertops, lighting and so on you might collect images to create a “wish list” for your kitchen. With the Pinterest browser tool you can simply pin a photo of a refrigerator (and a link to the website it’s from) onto your  board, along with the glass splashbacks, cutlery trays and spice racks. You keep all of the ideas in one central location.

Why Do People Use Pinterest?

The motivation to pin comes from a few different places. People pin to establish social credibility and define their persona online. With boards like “My Style” or “Quotes I Like” you can quickly see how everyone is branding themselves and subconsciously creating their online identity. However, few would actually admit that is what they are doing.

Instead they’d say that they use Pinterest to…

  • Find motivation – for example a health and fitness board
  • Get organised – for example, a DIY ideas for the home board
  • Find ideas – for example, a recipes for dinner board

According to one source in 9 tips to boost your Pinterest use via Inc.com, “I love Pinterest because it’s like getting a whole bunch of magazines without adding clutter in my house and without the cost.” This individual  goes on to add, “there are so many great ideas and recipes, and it’s all organized on the computer so I can access my favorites at anytime.” Money saving and convenience.

And they’d most certainly say they use Pinterest because of the beautiful images – it really is a lovely and visually engaging site.

As more and more businesses get on board with  Pinterest  you will see that people are using it to drive traffic, sell products and connect with their audience. In fact, major retailers are finding tremendous success with Pinterest. Whole Foods for example, has a reported 12,000 followers.

Finding and Connecting With Your Niche on Pinterest.

Because Pinterest is a site that uses images rather than the written word, your strategy is going to be different than it is with other social networking sites. However, you can integrate your Pinterest activities with both Twitter and Facebook. Think of it as the next level of social networking. Integrating Pinterest with your website, blog and other social networking activities is the key to building a large and profitable following.

Is Pinterest the right place for your business?

Sarah

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Comments

  1. Thanks for a helpful article – have bookmarked it :)
    I recently came across this infographic http://techcrunch.com/2012/03/14/this-is-everything-you-need-to-know-about-pinterest-infographic/ that shows how Pinterest is used very differently in the UK compared to the US.
    Am I right that you can’t yet connect Pinterest to a Facebook business page, only a personal profile?

    • sarah says:

      Hi Naomi, thanks for stopping by :)
      At the moment the Pinterest API is limited, so it’s just personal pages at the moment. Of course it all changes by the hour… so by the time I have typed this they could be updating company pages ;)
      Will check out your TechCrunch article, thanks for sharing :)

  2. Great post, Sarah!

    I find Pinterest to be a good platform for selling my books which are mainly “how-to” titles and joke books. The site also generates some useful traffic to my blog … all the more reason to use good images in your blog posts, as I describe here… http://howtowritebetter.net/how-to-boost-your-blog-posts-with-good-visuals/

    One piece of advice I would offer to larger businesses exploiting Pinterest is not to swamp pinners who follow you … I followed what turned out to be a jewelry business and suddenly had over 60 consecutive pins of diamond rings on my page! Little and often would be more appropriate, I think…

    • sarah says:

      Hi Suze, I totally agree with the swamping of pins. It can be overwhelming at times. I have recently unfollowed a chap (FB “friend”) for only pinning scantily clad women… I don’t know what business he’s in (perhaps promoting said scantily clad women?) but it’s of no interest to me.

  3. Ileane says:

    Hi Sarah,

    A few weeks back I started a Pinterest board for Podcasting. It turns out that there were only a handful of them on the topic at the time. Most likely that’s because most people don’t think of podcasting as a visual art form. It wasn’t long before I was connecting with influencers like Daniel J. Lewis and Cliff Ravenscraft who are also following my interest list for podcasting on Facebook. So in this case being an early adopter on Pinterest has really paid off. Thanks for the encouragement and the cool videos you posted on the topic that kept me motivated.

    • sarah says:

      So glad to hear of your great experiences Ileane :) I love reading about how people are making a success of Pinterest.
      You are high up on my to call list when I get the podcasts for this site up and running :) and I’m off to find your Podcasting boards!
      Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

  4. Marla Tabaka says:

    Thanks for some great information Sarah – love the infographic. I too think it’s important that some business owners are aware of Pinterest and all of the possibilities found there. I hope you don’t mind if I share some examples…
    http://www.inc.com/marla-tabaka/why-pinterest-should-matter-to-you.html
    Thanks!

  5. Thank you for a good inspirational post on Pinterst. Will quote you later on my blog (in Danish though) regards Dorte

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