I will be the first to admit that I was not the first to embrace the concept of Pinterest. Quite frankly, I thought it was for people who had nothing better to do with their time than post random pictures in scrapbook-like categories. I am the CEO of a company and spare time is as rare as cheap gas but soon I learned that not finding time for Pinterest would be a mistake my company could not afford to make.
For those of us born slightly prior to the computer era, keeping up with the ever-changing technological world can be somewhat daunting. Now couple that with this “thing” called social media and you can find yourself always positioned behind the eight ball. However, social media and Pinterest, most recently, cannot be ignored if those of us who find ourselves in the position of product branding want to be on the mind of those purchasing products each and everyday at the push of a button.
1- Pinterest is EASY to Use
I have a tendency to avoid what I don’t understand. So it was no surprise to anyone in my company that I dragged my heels (no pun intended) in embracing Pinterest. I dreaded going on to another social media hot spot only to belabor the instructions and work through the kinks through trial and error. However, Pinterest was as easy as putting a hot knife through butter. The designers of this site made the site fun, easy, and addicting.
2- Instantly My Products Can Be Viewed and Repinned To Many Others
I come from the days of sending out postcards to prospective clients showing the latest and greatest of what my company had to offer. The customer would marvel at the card, pick up the phone and call for further information. Gone are those days. Knowing what I do today, this method almost seems like it was taken from the annals of the Stone Age as it was anything but quick and easy. Using Pinterest, I simply upload my product pictures, add some text (Pinterest was very generous in allowing a nice amount of space for those who love to talk about what we have to offer), I can attach a link and click. Within seconds, my product went from the best kept secret to viral. No wait time…no post office…no mailing lists. Nice.
3- Pinterest Works Hand In Hand With Other Social Media Outlets
For those of us pressed for time, Pinterest has not only built a great platform to show what we have to offer but allows us to share this with other media outlets like Twitter and Facebook. So one picture post has the possibilities of finding a home on three social media outlets and like the old Wella Balsam ad went “and they told two people and they told two people and on and on.”
4- See What Others In Your Industry are Doing
No need to set up spies like Bill Belachek did to win football games. The cards are all laid out there for you to see. Now it doesn’t take a brain sergeant to figure out that your competition also has a front row seat to what you are producing but if you are marketing your product correctly, they will anyway. Conversely, if you see that those you are competing with in the open market all are offering products that are more similar than not, it might be a nice time to make a hard left and offer something different or improved. In one place, you can see what is out there being offered and try to make it better.
5- Pinterest is No Cost Test Market
Remember the days of walking through the mall only to be stopped by a lovely woman with a clipboard soliciting your opinion on what perfume you wore, what vegetable brand you serve at dinner, or what television show you most watched. Pinterest is a dream come true! You have the option of following people on Pinterest that you have found to have a common interest or found their “pins” (Pinterest’s term for pictures that you post) to be interesting. I suggest you find twenty people who have a connection to your business service or product. They are a representation of what potential buyers are drawn. If you start to see a repeated theme in the category in which you do business, you might want to consider incorporating those items into your own line or offerings.
6- Pinterest Allows You To Connect With More People
Some of us blasts from the past know this as the” touch program.” The more times you can reach out to someone and show them what your company has to offer the better chance you have of success. As I mentioned before, Pinterest does not only support this on their platform but makes connecting with others from other Social Media circles as easy as clicking a button. People who view your pictures can comment back on them starting an instant dialogue and the possibility of building a relationship with a new client. No return phone calls. No email to be sent out. And, more importantly, others viewing can read the conversation taking place causing more interest.
7- 10 Million Viewers a Month
Now that I have your attention! What other marketing path could you travel that would allow you to advertise for FREE to 10 million viewers 24 hours a day every day of the month. This doesn’t even count those who will see it on their Facebook and Twitter Accounts once it posts there as well. And, unlike any other advertising channel, your pictures remain allowing for people to revisit or find them at later dates when they have a need for what you have. This alone should have you on pinning this afternoon.
8- A Picture Says A Thousand Words
Let’s face it. Not all of us are word weavers or copy writers. Pinterest lets you off the hook by letting your pin do all the talking. Now Pinterest does encourage you to at least put a title on your post but you would want to do this anyway. This can include your company’s name, website, and phone number.
9- Pinterest Let’s You Post Your Price Tag
Depending on your market, this might or might no be something that you can entertain. I am in the women’s shoe business so not only are my clients impulse driven but they are price driven. I can pin a shoe we just designed or got in for our stores, add a description, and simply type the price in the text box. As soon as Pinterest detects the dollar sign it creates a banner on the top left hand corner of your picture. Viola…not only does my client get attracted to the heel by merely stumbling upon the picture but now she knows the price is affordable luxury fashion. Home run, touchdown, or cha ching at the register…whatever lights you up.
10- Pinterest Showcases Your Company’s Ties With the Community Through Your Philanthropic Commitments
Who doesn’t love a company who gives back to those in need or helps their community. By just creating a new board (how Pinterest allows you to categorize your pictures for easy viewing) potential clients will be able to align you with your charitable contributions.
BONUS- Ok, This is Not a Benefit To Your Business But You Will have Such Joy When Your Teenage Kids Realize Your Pictures are Being Repinned By Their Friends.
Who said you weren’t cool?
Any questions? Just post them to this blog.