WHY PINTEREST SHOULD BE ON TOP OF YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA CHANNELS
Guest Blog by Pinterest Expert and Pickled Ginger Marketing’s Pinterest Guru
Natasha Pavlovic Jankovic
Social Media: Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube… the list goes on and on.
WHY PINTEREST SHOULD BE ON TOP OF YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA CHANNELS
Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube… the list goes on and on.
In a sea of numerous social media channels, new bloggers and small business owners might rightfully wonder what platform should be their primary focus.
This, of course, is not a one-size-fits-all answer, and almost every blogger and business owner will market themselves on more than one platform.
However, because of its capabilities, there is one social media channel that stands out from the rest.
You’ve guessed it, it’s Pinterest.
And while Pinterest is fun, educational, and inspiring for average users, it’s a serious business for bloggers and business owners.
Here are some stats that will give you a taste of what I’m talking about here. As stated by Pinterest itself, more than 400 million people around the world now come to Pinterest every month to find inspiration, and according to OmnicoreAgency.com, here are some other interesting details about Pinterest that marketers will find intriguing:
- The average number of monthly searches on Pinterest is 2 billion
- 97% of searches on Pinterest are unbranded
- 84% pinners use Pinterest to decide what to buy
- 83% of weekly pinners have made a purchase based on the content they saw from brands on Pinterest
- 64% of Pinterest users described the platform as a place to find ideas, products or services they can trust
- 47% of social media users saw Pinterest as the platform for discovering and shopping for products
- 98% of pinners report trying new things they find on Pinterest
- More than 14 million articles are pinned each day
- Over 5% of all referral traffic to websites comes from Pinterest.
Lastly, what’s interesting to note, only 28% of marketers are already using Pinterest, (do you see the potential here?).
Now that I’ve got you intrigued, let’s dive deeper into Pinterest.
WHAT IS PINTEREST
Pinterest is considered to be a social media platform, but it’s actually a visual search engine, something like a “pretty Google”.
Surprised by this? Think about it for a moment and you’ll easily realize why it is so. When people come to Pinterest, they do this so they could search for whatever interests them at the moment, not because they want to share the latest happening in their lives or chat and catch up on what’s been going on with their friends, family, or colleagues. So, yes, Pinterest is definitely a search engine.
With Pinterest, you have the opportunity that your pins, with whatever content lies behind them, get seen by people looking for a certain search term, and if they find your pin interesting, they will engage with it in some form: they could enlarge a pin to have a better view of it, save a pin to their own account, and visit the link it leads to – which is, basically, the ultimate goal. Your LEAD MAGNET. Pickled Ginger Marketing’s lead magnets are the Free Resources (here for ease of reference!), so the clicks comes back to the website.
But what does a “visual search engine” actually mean? Well, when calculating the most relevant search results, Pinterest combines information from the title and the description of a certain pin, and what’s additionally interesting, also from the image itself.
(Quick explanation – if needed: pin is any image, and most recent a video, saved on the Pinterest platform).
Put it in a very simplified way, Pinterest can “see” what the image looks like, and this is also taken into account when displaying the results. The bottom line is that Pinterest will, just like Google, show what it considers to be the most relevant results for a search phrase in a format where images have the most dominant position (and I must say, with way much better matching levels compared to Google image results).
Of course, just like any other search engine, Pinterest has its own search algorithms, so from a marketing perspective, Pinterest SEO becomes an important factor that bloggers and small business owners must pay attention to if they want their pins to rank high and get a good reach. You would come to an SEO agency or expert to work on your Google organic growth, and just like Pinterest, you would (or should ideally) go to an expert in that field too. Pinterest is specific, it’s not a social media manager you need, it’s much more technical.
Unlike Google, which is easily accessible to all, any person who wants to browse Pinterest and enjoy what this platform has to offer needs to have a Pinterest account.
There are two types of accounts to choose from – one is personal and the other is a business account. Needless to say, as a marketer, you should open a business account for your brand, blog, or website, and optimize it to fit your target audience and customers.
The most logical question which follows is why should you open a Pinterest account in the first place? If Pinterest is like Google, then people can find you there, no need for Pinterest, right? To answer this, you have to see the benefits of Pinterest from a marketing perspective, and weigh out if they are worth it. Pickled Ginger Marketing works on its SEO growth (and that of its clients), but when we look at the Google Analytics integrated to the website, the Pinterest clicks and impressions we work on are exceptional too.
So let’s have a better look at what Pinterest can do for your business. But first things first – let me answer the question so many people ask:
IS PINTEREST FOR ANY BUSINESS?
Pinterest is an online platform used world-wide.
I know you already know this, so you might wonder why I’m saying this right now and how does this answer the question…wait for it….!
Two words are important here – online and global.
So to be clear right up front – if your business is a 100% brick and mortar, and you have absolutely no online presence (and don’t plan to have any either), I hate to tell you, but Pinterest won’t work for you. However, if you have an online presence of sorts, regardless of the type of work you’re into, you could consider Pinterest as your marketing platform.
Why? Simply, because you would (should!) have some online links where the traffic from Pinterest would be directed to. Think of the Freebie Cheat Sheets we link to on Pickled Ginger? Perfect links.
Another thing worth mentioning – businesses that have a lot of content online are much easier to market on Pinterest, but there are creative ways how businesses who still don’t have that much digital content yet, that can take advantage of Pinterest too. Also consider the type of products and/or services you’re offering. If they belong to digital goods or services that can be consumed through technology (such as courses, coaching, virtual assistant services, tutoring…), or even physical products that you can ship internationally, you’re good to go with Pinterest.
On the other hand, if you offer a product or a service exclusively on a local level, Pinterest will not give you that much of a return on qualified leads (at that point, Google My Business and Local SEO is perfect). In the case your business, the answer to whether you’ll use Pinterest or not isn’t as straightforward I’m afraid, and it’s up to you to weigh the pros and cons.
Depending on your business goals (because not all goals need to be directly related to making money, some examples of this are brand awareness and growing an online presence, which can indirectly result in more revenue later on) you’ll choose whether this social media platform is right for your business.
In summary, many types of businesses are suitable for Pinterest marketing. Having that said, let’s have a look at its benefits….
BENEFITS OF USING PINTEREST FOR BUSINESS
Some of the benefits of using Pinterest for business are clearly stated by the numbers in the introduction. Remember those percentages? Even if you’re not a numbers person (although you should be at least to a certain extent if you’re running a business) you probably understood the power of Pinterest from the stats given?
I’m going to describe Pinterest marketing benefits more clearly so they’re easier to grasp.
Pinterest is free
I know we’re talking about business matters, and every business runs on revenue (or better say, profit), but you can’t deny it – everybody loves free things! AND if free stuff is happens to be of pure quality….
Well, Pinterest is just the thing…
- It’s free.
- Free to sign up and use all that it has to offer.
- Not just for personal accounts, I’m talking about business accounts as well.
To be clear, you can pay for a promoted pin (that is to make a Pinterest ad), but there is no need for one if you properly optimize your account and create, optimize, and pin your pins strategically. See, back to the search engine chat. Just like Google, it’s free. It’s organic growth. You can take out Google Ads, but in the main, I am talking FREE.
Pinterest will do its SEO thing and display your pin in relevant search results (and also on home feeds of people who are interested in that specific topic, and on your follower feeds) no matter if you paid for your pin to be promoted or not. Of course like organic SEO, it takes time and you won’t have quick wins overnight. Put the work in though and build it in to your marketing strategy and it will grow.
I believe there isn’t a marketer who wouldn’t like to use the opportunity for a free world-wide/global marketing opportunity when given that option.
There are numerous possibilities of linking
Any image can become a pin on Pinterest.
(a short side note – Pinterest recently started experimenting with video pins so this is another option out there but unfortunately, it’s still not available in all countries)
Now, although you can save an image as it is, meaning, without adding any link to it, from a marketing perspective this is absolutely useless! Sorry! What you DO want is to link an image to a specific webpage where people could learn/discover more about it.
And where could the pin lead to? The possibilities are almost endless!
It could be the homepage of your website or a specific page within it, a certain blog post, a product page, a landing page (for your product, service, digital offer…), an opt-in page where you promote your freebie or some other offer, you can even link to a specific post that you have on other social media platform.
Wherever there’s a link, you can direct your pin to it, so you have numerous options to get creative (but, of course, be strategic with what you’re linking to).
Pinterest is a great source of traffic
You already know – getting an additional traffic stream is always welcomed, because more traffic equals more leads, and if people consider your offer one of quality, and something that meets their needs…. You’ve got yourself a customer or a new hot lead.
So if you struggle to get traffic to your website (or a blog, offer, landing page… basically anything that you want to get more clicks to) or just want more of it (and who wouldn’t?), then Pinterest can help you in it.
How? Remember the links that we talked about just a moment earlier? That’s how. By clicking on your pin, Pinterest users are redirected from Pinterest to any online location of your choice. Many bloggers report Pinterest as the #1 source of traffic from social media, and in certain cases you can even get more visits from Pinterest than from organic search (for example, on places where you can’t do that much for SEO as you could on your own website – such as platforms that are intermediaries between product/service providers and customers like Etsy, Freelancer, Fiverr…).
Longevity of pins
Although, admittedly, Pinterest is not on the very top of social media channels used, it has something extremely valuable which others don’t, and that is longevity and the reach of pins compared to posts on other social media channels (this becomes even more valuable when you add the time you invest in creating your social media posts to this equation).
In this category Pinterest easily beats every other platform, and in my opinion, this is by far the best reason to use Pinterest.
How long will a tweet or a Facebook post last?
You probably know the answer to this question.
If it’s not almost instantly seen (or boosted by paid promotions), or your followers don’t intentionally search for your posts (and how many people do you think are actually doing this?), a lifespan of an average social media post basically ends there.
How long does Pinterest content last?
Pinterest pins live forever and circulate all the time, and even if some pin is not an instant hit, it could become in the future.
So not only that a pin lasts longer than an average social media post, it can even become viral in the future. Here’s the thing. When people save a pin, they’re actually making a “clone” of it and the reach of that pin widens. So even if you delete a pin, if anybody else already saved it in the meantime, it will continue to live on and, most probably, further multiply its presence.
According to (mysterious!) the Pinterest algorithm, the pin will still be shown in the search results (though not as frequent as in the beginning, but it would definitely not be forever buried under newly created pins, either). At some point in time a pin can become valuable to people searching for that type of information/product, so more and more people will start saving it and visiting the link it leads to. This signals Pinterest that the pin is relevant, and it will in turn be shown to more people, and so the chain reaction begins.
The result is that you get a viral pin (yes, even from one that flopped in the beginning). Clearly, this is not a thing to be underestimated.
People come to Pinterest to shop
Yes, people go to Pinterest for inspiration and ideas on how to DIY many different things, but they also visit Pinterest to look for products and services (or get insights about them). Keep in mind that Pinterest works like a search engine, and people are aware of it.
Many Pinterest users come to the platform to search for products and services they need at the moment and are willing to purchase them, and I can freely add this is most probably due to its strong visual approach. Therefore, you can consider Pinterest as a place where many users can be viewed as “warm leads”, and since people voluntarily look for the things you’re offering, they are also more likely to become customers or clients. So if at that moment your pin (with a product or a service looked for) spikes an interest, it’s possible that people will also click the link to check it out further, and if a webpage is well crafted and meets their needs, there’s a high chance for a conversion.
Pinterest is not as crowded
Another benefit of Pinterest is that it’s still not as competitive as other social media channels are.
Remember the statistic from the beginning? It’s so striking that I simply must repeat it – only 28% of marketers are already using Pinterest! That’s like 70% of your competition has GONE and it doesn’t exist on this platform! All right, all right… different types of businesses follow different distributions, but you get the point – it’s still less crowded!
Less competition will definitely give your business more room to breathe, more possibilities to be seen, and gain followers and customers that like and trust your brand.
Pinterest has excellent support
This is maybe not a thing that’s directly related to marketing your business, but it’s good to know that if you ever need support or have any questions about your Pinterest account, you can turn directly to Pinterest for any help or clarification, and pretty quickly you can expect to get an answer (in most cases up to 2 days at max).
FINAL THOUGHTS OF USING PINTEREST FOR BUSINESS
Pinterest can be a powerful tool in your digital marketing strategy and it offers many advantages for different types of businesses, but it’s not a magic wand and it has its quirks from time to time (especially during the algorithm update phases).
When it comes to using Pinterest the way an average person does, it’s a pretty straight forward path, but from a business perspective, many bloggers, small business owners, and even marketers find it tricky to grasp, at least at first.
Therefore, don’t think it’s only you who might find Pinterest confusing. You’ll learn as you go along about the platform and it will become easier to understand and follow.
At the end of the day, it might become your favorite “social media” channel. If however, you’d would like to outsource it to an expert you’ll probably realise there aren’t that many around! However, the ones that are will be invaluable. There are of course fabulous courses and many small digital marketers train too.
And finally, if you’re just starting out with Pinterest, do keep in mind that it takes time (a rough estimate – up to a half of the year) to start getting traction and seeing consistent results, just like it would with any other SEO method, so don’t expect miracles overnight.
Here’s a one summary sentence of what you could being doing to become a Pinterest pro and get traffic to wherever your pins lead to:
Be an active pinner, have eye-catching pins with proper SEO that are pinned to relevant boards, link pins to a quality content, follow pinning best practices, and stay in the loop with (fortunately or not, every once in a while, changing) Pinterest algorithm.
On the other hand, if this is too much for you or you don’t have enough time to do this by yourself (or you simply want some help with your Pinterest marketing), Pickled Ginger collaborates with a Pinterest manager (yes, that’s me!), and on this link you can have a look at all the services that are available to you and your business.