4 Ways to Use Pinterest for Local Business
Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the last couple of months, you’ve certainly heard about Pinterest, a website that allows users to “Pin” images from websites into albums which showcase their interests, things they love or want, and places they’d like to go. Pinterest has become one of the fastest growing websites ever and recent statistics are showing that inbound traffic from Pinterest outnumbers Google+, LinkedIn and Twitter combined! Here are a few ideas to help get you going with using Pinterest for your small or medium sized local business.
- Create an album to spotlight your involvement and engagement in the local community with a “Places We Love” album.
An important part of being a local business is how ingrained you are in the local community. You can use Pinterest to highlight this aspect of your business. Once you’ve created an account you can add images from other local businesses that you are affiliated with or want to help spotlight. Add pictures from landmarks around town, images of your own storefront (from your own website, thus creating an inbound link for yourself), or pictures of ways in which your product could be utilized in the community. Your product or service needs to be supplementary to the community, or it will just appear to be shameless self-promotion and may be ignored.
- Spotlight community members with a “People We Love” album
A key aspect of community involvement is getting to know community members. Use in-store signage or your other social networks to find out which of your customers have blogs or websites that they would not mind having highlighted by you. Create an album of Community Members and start pinning pictures from these blogs and websites. They get increased inbound links and you are increasingly connected on a personal level with your community. Pin images from well established, influential or even famous community members as well. It all is just increased visibility for you.
- Showcase products or services specific to your industry
Become a source of information of what is hot and newly developing in your industry by creating an album full of pictures of new products, developing trends, how-to videos and things to come. You should already be doing this with your other social networks, but Pinterest provides a more visual way of doing so. You can use this as a “coming soon” album for you products or services you carry. Just be sure to update this album often.
- Show off new products or services with a “What’s New With Us” album
A small amount of self-promotion is ok, but make sure that this is not the focal point of your Pinterest page. You can use this as more informative, but not sales gimmicky. If possible, the best way to approach this would be to show OTHERS using your new products, or your new product being used or tested in the local community. These photos could be from your own website or websites of those involved in the pictures. If you can get photos of your product on the website of a local business association, that would be a great way to showcase your product and your local flavor, all while providing a link to the association’s page. The best thing about this is that you can see what your customer base likes and is interested in by watching them share, like or pin items themselves!
Most of all, and most importantly, remember to be human. Make your page about your customers, about your community, and about engagement. The goal of creating a Pinterest page for your local business should not be to try to get direct sales from it, but to create a close knit collaboration with the local community that will lead to customer retention, brand loyalty, and a focus on your importance as a staple part of your customers’ community and your industry. Set up Pinterest with your Twitter account and you can extend your reach even further, especially if you’ve used the Twitter search function to find and follow (and hopefully you have been followed back by) people in your local community.
Have you used Pinterest? Do you find it to be as much of a “next big thing” as many people are touting it to be?
Also, be sure to check out some of the legal info about Pinterest and copyright, be informed- view here
Thanks for reading. Feel free to share feedback or share online.
Now go get your social on!
Guest Blogger for Starr Hall
More about Rob Z-
Hi, I'm Rob Z! I am a fun loving, gnome-obsessed, coffee drinking, social media and theatre nerd. I currently reside in Austin, TX where I work for a company that helps small and local businesses succeed in managing their social media. I got to Austin by way of Canton, OH and Champaign, IL, where I earned a degree in Media Studies from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. I currently blog at robzie-blogzie.blogspot.com and you can follow me @robzie81 on Twitter. In my free time I love to take part in theatre, both on stage and in the audience. If I was allowed one super power, I would decline. I would abuse super powers, that is why I'm not allowed to have them.