Pinterest: The Best New Source of Traffic [Research]

What to Do (and Not Do) on Pinterest – 6 Actionable Tips

Pinterest is the fourth largest source of traffic in the world according to data from Shareaholic. Pinterest’s traffic has doubled since May making it an important entryway to your business.

Since the beginning of 2012, Pinterest has passed other social media platforms including LinkedIn, Google+, YouTube, Twitter and StubbleUpon, in terms of the amount of traffic it refers to other sites. Additionally, Pinterest refers more traffic than Bing and Yahoo. (Here are nineteen other reasons to use Pinterest with charts.) 

While other social media entities and search engines are driven by text, Pinterest is fueled by visual presentation, generally photographs. Pinterest requires marketers to have a strategy to present information in image format incorporating their brands to attract prospects and customers. (Here’s how to lay the groundwork for a Pinterest strategy.)

To improve your Pinterest effectiveness, here are three Pinterest dos and three Pinterest don’ts recommended by Beth Hayden, author of Pinfluence: The Complete Guide to Marketing Your Business With Pinterest.

3 Pinterest dos

  1. Create red carpet worthy visual content. Publish the absolute best content you can through a combination of content creation and curation. Actionable Marketing Tip: Pin a combination of original content and curated content that puts the spotlight on your product so that it’s alluring for your target audience.
  2. Make your content pinworthy. Since Pinterest is visual, incorporate a compelling image optimized for Pinterest into every piece of content you publish. Before you create the graphic element, make it appealing and shareworthy for your target audience. Depending on your resources, combine text and photos in an engaging way. The image can be useful, aspirational, educational or entertaining. Here’s an example of a compelling image that’s likely to get pinned and repinned. Actionable Marketing Tip: Think like a magazine editor to condense your story into an image. The image can be a single photograph of a detail, a stand alone photograph or a combination of photographs and text.
  3. Pin content when your followers and target audience are active on Pinterest. This recommendation also holds for other social media venues like Facebook and Twitter. Actionable Marketing Tip: Understand when your target market engages on Pinterest. Be active when they are in order to maximize the number of pins and repins. If you’re not sure when your audience is active on Pinterest, start by being active when most pinners are and test other times to determine when you get the most repins, likes and traffic to your site. (One option that neither Beth nor I have tested for scheduling pins is Pingraphy.)

3 Pinterest don’ts

  1. Don’t limit your pins and promotion to your own content. Avoid the me-me-me syndrome on Pinterest. As with other social media platforms, Pinterest is about supporting the community and paying-it-forward. Actionable Marketing Tip: Become a good curator of other people’s content. Show your style and build an audience of people who respect your point of view.
  2. Don’t limit your use of Pinterest to a social media scrapbook. Think beyond the social media pinboard. Actionable Marketing Tip: Assess how you can use the images curated on Pinterest to meet your customers’ needs. Look for other pinners ideas about fashion, interior design, food, and events. Gather information to support your business. While you’re at it, keep a list of ideas for content you want to create for your pin boards.
  3. Don’t neglect to optimize your Pinterest Profile settings. As with other social media entities, it’s important to extend your brand to your Pinterest interactions. Actionable Marketing Tip: Check that your business name is on your Pinterest homepage and complete the information about your firm with optimized keywords. Link to your website and to your other social media sites.

Pinterest can be a great source of traffic for your business if you optimize your opportunities by following the dos and don’ts with every piece of content you pin.

What has your experience with Pinterest been? What are your recommendations and why?

Happy marketing,
Heidi Cohen


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Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/video4net/4103102579/

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  • Ginny Soskey

    Hey Heidi,

    Thanks for including our data in your post! Glad it was helpful for you. :)

    -Ginny from Shareaholic

  • http://twitter.com/annerallen Anne R. Allen

    What a useful post. I haven’t had time to venture into Pinterest yet, but I’ll bookmark this for when I do. Thanks!