The Latest In Social Media Websites: Introducing Pinterest

Okay, here's a new one... a virtual pin board.  I have to admit that I love learning about new social websites and online applications.  When I heard about the latest edition to the emerging list of novel sites I had to turn to a fellow social media users to better understand what this was all about. This week, Lianne Froggatt tells us more about a new site that serves as a virtual pin board to collect everything beautiful or meaningful on the web.

I confess I am completely addicted to Pinterest. I think this may be themost compelled I have been to a social media site since MySpace first came onthe scene back in my youth.  However, since becoming embroiled in theworld of online marketing and SEO, I can’t help but be drawn not only to thepretty pictures but the incredible potential that this site can offer.

Pinterest allows users to pin images from anysite onto virtual boards under any topic from crafts to food. Described as a‘virtual pinboard’, this image bookmarking site provides an interestingplatform on which to create a buzz about a website and potentially lots oflinks back to it. As it currently stands, Pinterest allows followed links whichmeans that every time something is pinned or re-pinned, the original sourcewill receive a backlink to their domain from a powerful, authoritative website(unlike most other social media platforms)

Pinterest not only provides a bookmarklet that users can use to pinproducts and images whenever but there is also a Pin It button available forwebsites and blogs. The value of embracing Pinterest in this manner could beextremely beneficial for your company and social media profile.

Not only can Pinterest provide links in this fashion which provesextremely beneficial for search marketing, the very nature of the site isinherently different from the main other social network sites out there.

Twitter is getting better at displaying images, but is still very much atext based medium encouraging conversation and debate. Facebook has emphasizedphoto sharing to its user base, yet with the excellent tagging feature they putthe focus firmly on the relationship between images and people. Facebook business pages can be brilliant forengagement and providing information about your company’s products andservices, but Pinterest allows the emphasis to be primarily on the products.

Other sites that focus on images such as Flickr or Photobucket have amarked difference to Pinterest; the primary focus is on the organisation and sharingof your own photos as opposed to the Pinterest which encourages people to shareanything that they like or enjoy.  Sites like these also don’t have thevisual impact of Pinterest which is minimal in terms of text or surroundingspace- it is all about the images.

So, what can this innovative and exciting social media platform mean foryour business? Many companies have already been utilising Pinterest, creatingtheir own accounts and using this platform as a tool to promote their business,a good example being Warner Bros shop’s Pinterest boards.

So, as promised, here are five top tips for using Pinterest to helpmarket your company:
      1.  For visual businesses a Pinterest account willsimply be a brilliant online gallery of your work, be that photography,clothing or crafts and help create an awareness of your stuff.  Make sure you update your boards regularly andkeep the items you pin in keeping with the feel of the site.  Hand outflyers in your shop or at your gallery opening complete with QR codes that willtake people directly to your online gallery.
2. Create an ‘online catalog’ using differentboards for different item groups and help your potential customers navigatearound what you have to offer.

3. A Pinterest led marketing campaign would be abrilliant and unique way to promote your business.  Create a hiddenlanding page on your site for an exclusive product that can only be accessedthrough the Pinterest link. Or run a teaser board in the run up to the launchof a new product or event, your pins alluding to what it could be and the finalpin being a reveal. Having interesting boards will encourage people to followthem and share your content. 

 If you run a service as opposed to havingproducts, take photos of your finished work, for example a hairdresser couldcreate different boards of short styles, up do’s and so on. Currently Pinterestis mainly used by women so it will be particularly good for these types of services.
Getleaflets printed with QR codes linking directly to your boards. Hand them outat an opening or event, or simply have them lying around in your shop. Take your customers directly to your boards and keep your work in the forefrontof their minds.
As a relative new-comer in the social media network for businesses,there is a real opportunity with Pinterest to create a unique and exciting buzzabout your company.  Currently the site is invitation only; you canrequest an invite or be invited by a current member. I do have a few invitesleft so feel free to leave a comment or drop me an email and I will send oneover.

Happy Pinning!

This post is written by Lianne Froggatt, a fresh faced internet marketer at IdeasByNet, a UK promotional gifts distributor. Interested in social media marketing, SEO and general internet marketing, she would love your feedback. Find her at or tweet her @Lianne_Froggatt.