Productive Pinning with Pinterest®

Pinterest® is one of the newer and less well known social media “kids on the block,” but used wisely with the right audience, it can add a nice dimension to your marketing tool portfolio. The core metaphor driving Pinterest is the “bulletin board” – different users have different topic boards. Users can “pin” their own postings; and can “pin” other people’s postings to their own boards. Keywords help drive people to different boards about different topics.

The posting itself is generally an image with some overlap text for context. “Find fashions for your petite pear figure,” with an image of a pear-shaped petite woman or “Build your own garden in the middle of the city,” with a picture of a garden. The posting is pinned to boards with the topics “fashion,” “gardening” or “petite fashion” or “urban gardening.” The post also generally includes key words, a short description and a link to a website with more information (like a product that can be purchased).

Pinterest marketing can be done organically – by posting informative posts that are well labeled and encourage cross-posting. Posts can also be promoted, which means you can pay money to have your posts appear in other people’s boards.

As an organization, if you are just getting started on Pinterest, you can leverage your email marketing program by announcing your Pinterest account by email – this will allow people to click through to “follow” your Pinterest boards, like on Facebook or Twitter. You can also use Pinterest to drive people to your email marketing – the Pinterest posting itself may include some useful tip about your service or product, with a link to an email sign-up page that allows them to register to get more information on related topics.

Pinterest is great for fun, image-based marketing. When it was first launched, Pinterest was considered a venue mainly for hobbyists and other organizations in the visual arts – today, it has become a vibrant and diverse platform that any organization could leverage as part of its marketing strategy.