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Selling on Pinterest: How to Master Pinterest Advertising and More

Chapter 8 by Nicole Martins Ferreira

With over 300 million monthly active users, Pinterest proves to be a great place to market your brand. Pinterest has 2 billion monthly idea searches showcasing how much of a powerhouse the platform is. A sweeping majority of active pinners have planned (93%) and made (83%) purchases because of Pinterest. Product pins are quite popular on Pinterest, with users pinning about 2 million product pins each day.

The best part about Pinterest is that 83% of people would rather follow their favorite brands instead of celebrities on Pinterest. It’s the second highest source of referral traffic (5%) for Shopify store owners. For social media marketers, it’s a paradise. 

Selling on Pinterest Example: Forever 21 is one of the most popular brands on Pinterest. With over 450,000 followers, the brand surely understands how Pinterest works. Forever 21 has boards for all the types of products they sell from activewear to home. Each board includes a main image that has the category name written on it such as ‘swim.’

Each board includes hundreds or thousands of products. The high volume of pins in each board makes it more likely that someone will follow it, find it and enjoy browsing through it. They even include a board for things they don’t sell like food which also helps improve their chances of being found on Pinterest since food and recipes are really popular. Their pins include keywords like ‘chiffon fabric’ and ‘short sleeves’ to optimize for Pinterest’s search.

Pinterest - Forever 21

Pinterest Marketing: What is Pinterest?

Pinterest can best be described as an online pinboard, that’s used for collecting visual pieces of multimedia, mostly images. It’s like a virtual board where you can find and curate images and videos. What makes Pinterest different from other social networks is that the intent here is the discovery of other people’s content, and not particularly storing your own.

Pinterest is full of inspiring, actionable ideas that come from all over the web. People can add anything they like from any website using the browser extension and the save button. Once you add a pin, other people will be able to see the pins you added in their home feed and search results. Pinterest isn’t just limited to people though. It’s very common to see businesses with a Pinterest marketing strategy. Businesses can create their own pins, which can help them to highlight products, to build brand awareness, and to increase sales. What’s more is that, businesses can also create boards, which can then be organised by product category, interest, or any other seasonal topics that relate to the business.

If you take a look at Pinterest’s gender demographics, it’s quite clear that Pinterest is more popular among women than men. Even though more than 50% of the new signups on Pinterest are men, 66% of current users are women, between the age group of 25-54. The best time to post on Pinterest can be related to the user habits of mothers, who tend to use Pinterest actively in the evening, or later at night. It’s much more popular over the weekend and during after work hours.

Best time to post on Pinterest

What is Pinterest Used for?

So, what is Pinterest used for? Mostly, people are using Pinterest to find and save new ideas. These ideas could range from new recipes, some interior decoration tips, fashion inspiration, or anything else you’d like to save. Each individual “pin” represents an idea that you’ve stored (in multimedia form), a description, and a link that directs back to the image’s online source. By clicking on the pin’s URL, you can find more information about the idea and the source.

Different people use Pinterest differently. Some use it to search for things that they’re interested in, some to browse their home feeds to find new ideas, and some to get inspiration from other people’s feeds. It’s simple, when people like what they see, they save the pin to their own boards, or click on the the URL to learn more, or to shop.

But how more can small businesses use Pinterest? Small businesses can use Pinterest marketing to popularise their products and grow their consumer base. Pinterest being a highly visual based medium, gives businesses a chance to engage with their consumers by sharing images and videos. If you’re a small business, or an unfamiliar brand, Pinterest marketing can help generate or improve your online presence. If you join Pinterest as a business and work toward generating a Pinterest marketing strategy, you’ll be able to set metrics to see what content from your website is most popular on Pinterest. You’ll get to know more about your customer base, and about the people that are engaging with you and your brand. All the visual content that Pinterest supplies can surely help generate ideas for your marketing strategy or to understand marketing trends. Interestingly, you can even get Pinterest marketing, or Pinterest advertising tips from Pinterest itself. So, feel free to go through the visual content and brainstorm ideas that inspire you.

At the end of the day, Pinterest, along with other social media channels help to create brand awareness. This can possibly lead to an increase in leads, and better engagement with customer base.

Pinterest Marketing: Pinterest for Business Tips

Use buyable pins. Buyable pins allow Pinterest app users to buy products on their mobile device. This allows you to sell on Pinterest for free. Users will be able to buy products from your Pinterest page without having to visit your website. Pinterest doesn’t take a percentage of the sale but you’ll still need to process your order and handle customer service like you would from any of your customers. You can use the Shopify app featured in the tools section to easily create buyable pins.

Use rich product pins. They help make your pins shoppable by including real-time pricing and stock availability. You’re also more likely to be found via rich product pins because you’ll be added to Pinterest’s own curated feeds. Rich pins ensure that users have the most updated information about your product when they see your pin.

As a store owner, you can promote your pins. By advertising on Pinterest, you can increase your pins’ visibility and get more repins, clicks and purchases. You can use Pinterest’s ad platform to improve your brand awareness, increase traffic, engagement and sales. You’ll want to promote your best performing pins or products to better your odds of getting the kind of engagement and sales you desire.

Make your pins tall. If pinning on Pinterest you’ll want to make sure your images are vertical rather than square or horizontal. If you’re pinning a blog post, you likely need to create a vertical graphic and add it as an image in the post to be able to pin it. The best Pinterest image size is 600 px by 900 px. However, you can make it longer to increase your image’s visibility.

Pin the product page. The worst thing for a Pinterest user is to find a product they love only to not be able to find it when they click the link. If you remove the product from your store, remove it from your Pinterest account. If you’re pinning a blog post and include products on it, make sure to add the product link clearly in the beginning to make it easy for your customers. Once you’ve pinned products to your boards, test them to make sure the product links work and are easy to navigate.

Incentivize pinners to buy your products with a discount code. While Pinterest advertising can be a big source of traffic it doesn’t always convert well. Having a discount code can help encourage customers to take the leap and make the purchase. You can do this by having a pop-up discount code or an exit-intent one. Keep in mind that many users may be visiting from mobile so you’ll want to minimize the number of popups and slider apps you use.

Create boards that aren’t directly related to your products. If you only pin your products, you might miss out on the ability to grow your Pinterest page. Create boards that complement your products. For example, if you sell wedding dresses, you could create boards around wedding photography. The wedding photography board won’t drive sales for you. However, it may help you land new followers for your wedding dress store. Lifestyle posts work really well for many fashion retailers.

Optimize your Pinterest pins and boards. Make sure you include researched keywords in your descriptions and boards. Use keywords people would search for such as ‘dresses 2018’ instead of ‘girly things’ which users may not search for to find a dress. You’ll also want to have a business account so you can add your verified link.

Regularly update your content on Pinterest. While Pinterest can seem like a set it and forget it platform – it isn’t. Treat it the way you would Facebook with constant and regular active. The more you put into it, the more you’ll get out of it. You’ll want to remove old pins with broken links and add new products. You’ll want to add pins to every board you create on at least a weekly basis.

The most popular Pinterest categories are food, DIY, home decor, women’s fashion, quotes, fitness, humor, travel, technology and hair/beauty. If your store isn’t in one of these categories you’ll want to find a way to incorporate these categories into your Pinterest page as long as it’s complementary to your brand.

Add some text to your images. Whether you add the board name for your board’s main image or text for a quote or infographic, it can help capture attention. While a picture can tell a thousand words, sometimes the constant flow of images can cause users to scroll past your image. However, if you have one word on an image it can help stop a scroller for a second to take a look.

Comment on users’ pins. Like other social media platforms, you’ll need to be social. When leaving a comment make sure to add value. Don’t tell people to follow you back. Or to buy your products. Focus on talking about the pin itself. Did someone post a cool infographic with interesting statistics? Talk about it. Did someone share a really cool top you love? Let them know you think they have great taste in fashion.

Make sure your boards share a unified style. For example, having one board for all the products on your store is difficult to navigate and won’t perform as well as a board for specific product categories. If you have a board called ‘dogs’ no one wants to see a cat picture in it. Stay true to the board name.

Browse your Pinterest analytics. You’ll see how many impressions you’ve received, how many unique visitors, your top pins from the last 30 days, and more. By knowing what your best pins are, you’ll be better able to understand why some pins perform better than others so you could create pin better products and content for the platform. It’ll help you understand your audience and followers better. If you notice that people are constantly pinning a certain style of product, it’ll allow you to add more of those type of products to your store so you can increase your sales.

Use zoomed in images. According to Track Maven, a close up of lips is more effective than showing a person’s entire face. If you’re selling beauty products, showcasing the specific lip color zoomed in allows Pinterest users to see the color detail better which may increase conversions. Top brands tend to pin zoomed in pictures that don’t show the picture in its entirety. For example, instead of showing an entire plate of food, you show ¾ of the plate. Nordstrom did this on 90% of their pins and they have over 4 million followers.

Pinterest Marketing Tools:

Better Coupon Box is an app that allows you to grow your social media followers for Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter and build your email list. The app works by offering a special discount code to customers in exchange for the social media follow. By increasing your social following, you’ll have more chances to remarket to those customers in the future while also potentially landing a sale with the discount code offer.

Pinterest - Better Coupon Box Beeketing

Outfy is a great app for automating your social media posting. When you add a product to your store it automatically gets pushed out onto your social media pages such as Pinterest. If you’ve got great lifestyle images, this can work well for you. You may need to make some small edits to your descriptions to ensure that it’s optimized for click through.

Pinterest - Outfy

Canva can be used to create Pinterest images. You can choose to use their templates made specifically for the Pinterest platform. This is a great tool for those looking to create designs quickly that look professional.

Pinterest - Canva

Pinterest Marketing Strategy Resources:

Pinterest Success Stories is a great resource where you can learn from the success of brands who’ve successfully grown because of Pinterest. You’ll learn what they did to increase their sales through promoted pins, product rich pins, and more.

Top 10 Brands on Pinterest by Social Media Delivered has a list of 10 popular brands on Pinterest you can learn from and model your Pinterest account after. You’ll learn what it takes to have millions of followers by studying these brands.

next: Chapter 9

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