Jul 302012
 
Pinterest

I’m about to start using Pinterest for the first time, so as I teach myself, I’m sharing what I’m learning here.  Hope you find it useful. As with every new social media tool, the more you learn about it, the more there is to learn.  But here’s a start:

What is it?  Pinterest is “a Virtual Online Pinboard.”  (I’d have called it an online bulletin board, but I’m quoting this and the other definitions here from: http://pinterest.com/about/help/.)

UPDATE: Right after writing this blog post, I read  How to Use Pinterest for Business e-book from Hubspot.  Once you’ve worked your way through my basics below, check it out here.  It’s fabulous.  Thank you, Hubspot!

Pin: “An image added to Pinterest… from a website using the Pin It button, or . . . [you can] upload images from your computer.  Each pin added using the Pin It button links back to the site it came from.”  You can also link videos from YouTube.

Awesome: So ‘pinning’ also helps building inbound traffic . . . by sending your site visitors from links on Pinterest. (These are considered ‘no-follow’ links, so they don’t increase your search/SEO ranking, but they do send traffic to your site, which is a key goal of your marketing efforts.  See video here for a full explanation of ‘no-follow’ links: http://cmsteachings.com/what-nofollow-link).

How to Pin: You can pin from any website, using the ‘bookmarklet’ feature: “Select the image you want to pin, choose which board the image belongs on, type a description, and add some tags [think keywords, too] to help users search for it.  You can choose to share the pin to Facebook and/or Twitter.  When you’re done, click Pin It.”

If you’re on a website and see an image you want to Pin to one of your boards, log into Pinterest, click on “Add” up at the top, enter the URL of the website and scroll through until you see the image you want to add.  Then describe your Pin (up to 500 words) and Pin it!

Pinning Best Practices according to Pinterest:

  • Pin from the original source.
  • Give credit and include a thoughtful pin description

Note: You can also tag other Pinterest users in your Pin description, by using “@their username”.  This helps you to connect/network with other users.

Board:  “A board is a set of pins . . . [which] can be created on any topic . . . you can add as many pins to a board as you want.”  You, as a Pinterest user, can create as many boards as you want.

Boards have a title + a category.  Categories are pre-set in Pinterest or you can choose ‘Other’ as your category.

Repinning: Just like you can retweet, you can repin.  This allows you to add an image from someone else’s board to your board(s) on Pinterest.

Pin It Button:  Pinterest has a Pin It button which you can add to your website.  Its function:  “to invite your readers to pin your work onto Pinterest.”  Pinterest advises you to place the Pin It Button (which you can create off the Pinterest website) near your other social media tools.  More easily, you can also add the Pin It Button with various WordPress plugins.  Or if you’re using Sexy Bookmark WordPress plugin, you can automatically add the Pin It Button to your blog posts by editing your settings.

Contributors:  Other people can contribute to your board but only with your permission.  To add someone as a contributor, you must follow at least one of that person’s boards.  However, anyone can Re-Pin from your board(s) to their board(s) without your permission – that’s part of the viral possibilities of Pinterest.

User: A user is the Pinterest name for your Pinterest account which other people see.  You can use a made-up name, your actual name, or one that incorporates your company name, for example.  Incorporating a keyword in your user name is a marketing bonus.

Profile: You can create a profile (up to 500 words).  This shows up right under your photo, so it’s a good place to put important information about you, to list your website, to include your business name.

Following:  You can ‘Follow All’ in which case you’ll see all someone’s pins on all their boards when you go to Pinterest, including any new boards they make.  You can ‘Follow Individual Board’ and then you’ll only see someone’s pins for the board(s) you’re following.

Pinterest has html code available to add a Follow Pinterest button to your website so that people can easily follow your boards.  See: http://pinterest.com/about/goodies/for how to.

Commenting: You can comment on a pin in Pinterest.  You can also tag other Pinterest users by using “@their username”

Resources:

To read a great article about “The 10 best ways to use Pinterest as a small business owner”, go here: http://justjumpmarketing.com/pinterest-for-service-oriented-businesses/

For even more ideas, here’s another one:“56 Ways to Market Your Business on Pinterest”: http://www.copyblogger.com/pinterest-marketing/

My Initial Conclusions about How to Use Pinterest For Business

1.  Use Pin It:  That’s a great way to get people on your site to broadcast what you’re doing to their networks who follow them on Pinterest.  And to drive traffic back to your website.  Make sure all your blog posts have photos (compelling photos, even better) so people can and want to pin your blog posts.

2.  Use Follow me on Pinterest:  That’s a great way to get people to be connecting with your boards on Pinterest.  A way to establish yourself as an authority, a resource, or just an interesting person.  You can create a business board which tells all about your business, your books (if you’re an author), your clients, your business projects or services / products, the possibilities are endless.

It is also a good idea to pin regularly, to keep your followers’ interested and engaged.

Either way, keep Pinning!  Follow me on Pinterest, too!
Follow Me on Pinterest

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