What is Pinterest and How Does It Work?

08 Jul, 2021

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Pinterest: A Unique Marketing Channel

Most businesses already have a social media profile on one of the big three: Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Beyond these big three, there are other useful options that SMBs would be wise to learn more about; Pinterest has over 200 million monthly users worldwide — to make these users part of your audience you first need to understand how the Pinterest platform works and how it can help you find more customers.  


What Is Pinterest?

Let’s start with the very basics: what is Pinterest?

Pinterest is a unique platform that offers users the space to channel their creativity. As such, it is most often utilized to find inspiration, form new ideas, and discover new interests and hobbies. The platform mainly consists of photos, known as a Pin. Each of these pins can be searched for and saved by Pinterest users. 

Pins can include the links to websites where the original image will be found. You see where we are going with this, right? The fact that you can link a pin to your website means that you easily drive traffic towards your page, which may also end up positively impacting your conversion rates.

Users can group their pins together onto called a board. The board offers an overview of the thing each user is interested in. Often creating categories and groupings that other users and communities can find.


 Why Is Pinterest So Popular?

As you can tell, Pinterest has quite a different model than other social media websites and apps, which is why it is considered to be a class apart. A lot of people consider it to be much more upbeat than other platforms, giving content on the platform a more positive community drive that creates engagement through inspiration rather than fear.


Pinterest Helps with Content Marketing

Content marketing is one of the most utilized forms of marketing. Most businesses implement it across different channels such as Facebook and LinkedIn. However, it has gotten to a point where it becomes repetitive, which means that it won’t attract the audience as much.

With Pinterest, you get a complete way to bring your content marketing plans to life. Using Pinterest’s unique format, you can easily attract the audience and compel them to interact with your brand. Essentially, there is less focus on words and more on images. This aspect is a breath of fresh air for everyone since most people consume media by reading it.

The beautiful, creative images you put out on Pinterest are bound to resonate with your target market. Accompanied by the brief description Pinterest allows you to add, you can even give context to these images. You’re still putting the ideals of content marketing into place but in the most unique and likable way possible.


Pinterest does not require you to have a big following

On Pinterest, everyone gets the chance to make a difference! You don’t need to be a big brand with a huge following to gain attention — unlike Instagram. Neither do you have to worry about likes, retweets, or any of those elements.

Since everyone on Pinterest can look at everything related to their interests, it becomes easier for a brand to make its presence own. All you have to do is focus on presenting quality content that is relevant to the people you want to do business with. The rest? Leave it to Pinterest!


Pinterest Is Well Structured

Dealing with the haphazard distribution of media on other social media platforms can become very overwhelming for people. For businesses, it can be hard to clearly relay who they are as a brand. However, these things don’t stand true for Pinterest!

Pinterest allows you to organize your content in a clear and very visually appealing manner. Not only does this make it easier for you to form a clearer image of your brand, but it also makes it easier for the customer to find what they are looking for.

Additionally, since you are also enabled to save things for later to Pinterest, people can easily store your content on their boards and interact with it when they are free.

All of these reasons (and more!) make Pinterest a great option for businesses - especially small ones looking to grow and create a more solid presence online.


How can small businesses use Pinterest to grow their business online?

The biggest aim for a small business is to get enough traffic to its website. In this regard, Pinterest can help you because it is the second-largest driver of website traffic - the first being Facebook. Not only that, but 47% of Pinterest users go there specifically to shop (a rate four times higher than other social platforms).

And the best part? 95% of Pinterest images were either pinned or re-pinned from the web, which means Pinners are promoting brands without even knowing it. This means that you get user-generated content, without having to jump rivers for it!

 Unlike other social media platforms, Pinterest makes it easier for you to get business since most people use it for ideas that translate to real-life actions. In fact, 89% of pinners in the U.S. use Pinterest for ideas before making a purchase.

In short, a small business can really benefit from incorporating Pinterest into its strategy. If you are looking for a great way to find topics that will engage your audience, use free keyword tools like those found in rankingCoach  


Great Examples of Pinterest Marketing from SMBs

Let’s look at a few examples to understand this better.


Ruggable is definitely a great example of how to market on Pinterest. The brand offers durable and inexpensive rugs. They are a smaller business and have been making the most of Pinterest tools and features to elevate their business strategy.

It has been using the Shop tab on Pinterest - which makes it easier both for the retailer and the client to keep things in perspective. Essentially, Ruggable is using Pinterest to take their eCommerce strategy to the next level

Benefit Cosmetics

Another great example of marketing on Pinterest is  Benefit Cosmetics uses Pinterest to reinforce their branding across all the ideas they present on Pinterest. Not only is this wonderful for brand awareness, but also associates a strong brand aesthetic with itself. They have a very pretty and consistent pink color palette that is applied throughout their content, accompanied by their logo.

This way, Pinterest is used to expand its presence on social media and the Internet in general.


Using Pinterest, Mejuri has built a very strong online community. They have a hashtag called #thefinecrew that brings together all their followers and ambassadors. The user-generated content this gives them really makes their presence on the platform stand apart. They have a dedicated board for their community that makes it even easier to put the content into perspective.

All in all, Mejuri has quite an attractive feed on Pinterest that is utilized to get more people to interact with the brand.


How To Create Good Content for Pinterest

To help you with creating good content for Pinterest, here are a few tips

Pin more often

Pinning at least 10 times per day is likely to result in 150 percent more engagement on Pinterest. A few things you can do to make this possible is schedule your posts, space out your pins, and make sure to check out your Pinterest account once a day.

Make use of Rich pins

Rich pins are a free Pinterest feature that can be used to add greater detail and information to the pins themselves. The five types of rich pins are article pins, product pins, recipe pins, movie pins, place pins.

As such, they can help you with adding pertinent information such as pricing, article information, and location details.

Create the right-sized images

Remember that the best aspect ratio for Pinterest images is 2:3 or 1:3.5, with a minimum width of 600 pixels. Your pins are most likely to look attractive if they are vertically aligned, so try making that kind of content.

Focus on descriptions

While most of the focus is on images, the descriptions that accompany the pin are also equally important! Therefore, pay attention and put some effort into creating better descriptions. Make sure you include all the important details and make them as comprehensive and detailed as possible.

Pins with text on them

Another good way to make your content stand out on Pinterest is to create images that have text on them. This allows you to provide more context to the idea and may resonate with the potential customers for this reason.


More Pinterest Tips

  •     Categorize your boards.
  •     Find popular group boards.
  •     Check your Pinterest stats and other analytics.
  •     Avoid adding borders.
  •     Increase brightness and saturation.
  •     Add the elements of your branding subtly, but consistently.
  •     Follow individual boards.
  •     Verify your website domain.
  •     Link your Pinterest account to Facebook and Twitter.
  •     Invite contributors to pin to a board with you.

Alternatives to Pinterest

In case Pinterest doesn’t seem to be the right fit for you, here are other options you can opt for:

  •     Juxtapose
  •     We Heart It
  •     Dribbble
  •     FoodGawker
  •     Gentlemint
  •     Dudepins
  •     Fancy
  •     Mix
  •     DwellingGawker

Can Pinterest Help With SEO

If you use it right, Pinterest can be a great tool in terms of boosting your SEO strategy. Since it covers a wide range of topics and drives organic traffic across many industries, it can really maximize a business’s SEO potential.

SEO for Pinterest involves optimizing your Pinterest profile and website in such a way that it leads to more organic traffic. This is done by incorporating as many target keywords as possible, boosting engagement metrics, and maximizing social shares. Unlike other sites where backlinks and technical SEO are more important, Pinterest allows you to cash in on the benefits of SEO by simply having great content.

More tips that will help you with Pinterest SEO:

  •     Familiarize yourself with the basics of Pinterest.
  •     Create a Business account on Pinterest.
  •     Choose an SEO-friendly username.
  •     Optimize your profile for maximum results.
  •     Create at least one board.
  •     Prepare your website by adding a Pinterest tag.
  •     Set traffic and conversion goals for your business and Pinterest account.
  •     Conduct keyword research and use the right keywords.
  •     Organize and optimize your boards.
  •     Aim for maximum engagement.
  •     Optimize for visual search. Try Pinterest ads.

Free digital marketing tools like rankingCoach can help you find the right keywords for SEO. It can also help you to set up Google Analytics so you can track the amount of traffic you attract from Pinterest.


Using Pinterest as part of a wider digital marketing strategy

Pinterest is a great addition to your strategy. As of yet, it is not evolved enough to be considered a full-fledged marketing platform. Therefore, you should only focus on Pinterest in addition to other social media tools such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

 However, just because it isn’t evolved yet doesn’t mean it is not likely to! The future for Pinterest marketing seems to be very bright, and if you want to reap benefits from it later, you must put your efforts toward Pinterest now! The more you focus on it today, the more beneficial it will be for you in the future.


The Key Takeaway

Pinterest is a unique app that has a little something for everyone. For everyday users, it is the ultimate source of creativity, inspiration, passion, and art. For businesses, it is an ever-growing marketing tool that allows them to make the most of digital tools, but in a way that sets them apart and allows them to outshine their competitors. The key takeaway for you, therefore, is to start paying attention to Pinterest! It will pay off in the future.

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