To put it simply, Pinterest is a “virtual pinboard.” It helps users organize and share all the beautiful and interesting things that they find online. Members use their pinboards to plan weddings, decorate their homes, and organize their favorite recipes.


Pin, Re-Pin, Repeat

A pin is an imaged added to Pinterest. Your various Pinterest boards are made up of pins. A board can be created on any topic, like, “Recipes to Try,” “Places I Want To Go” or “Wishlist.” A pin can be added from a website using the “Pin It” button, or you can upload photos from your computer. Your followers will see your photo and caption, and if they want to know the original source of the photo, they’ll click on the photo. Tip: by using the “Pin It” button, the photo will automatically link to the original source / website of the image – pretty neat!

You can pin any photo that you find online, or photo that you upload to your computer. You can also re-pin a photo that’s already on Pinterest – moving it to your board of choice. By re-pinning something, you’re collecting that photo for storage on your board. Your followers, in turn, can re-pin the photos that you share for their own “collection” or board.

Putting It To Use

Many businesses use Pinterest as a way to extend their brand beyond what they sell or do. For instance, a retail store may share their Spring 2013 line on a “What’s New” board, and then also shares party planning tips and decorating ideas on their “Party Planning” board. While the second board may not feature one item for sale by the company, it shares that brand’s lifestyle and inspires their customers.
As we mentioned above, users can pin directly from websites, or they can repin from other users – another virtual (and visual) word of mouth marketing tactic.
Here are some ideas on how to effectively use Pinterest:

  • Create inspiring boards: travel, recipes, “products we love,” etc.
  • Highlight what your business cares about – philanthropy, volunteering, gardening, etc.
  • Link to weekly specials or seasonal sales on your website.
  • Celebrate the seasons with holiday idea boards.
  • Make it personal – show what inspires YOU, not just what you sell.

For more information on how to make Pinterest work for your business, visit: http://pinterest.com/about/help/.

Also, check out our Tweet, Post and Pin article to learn more about how to interesting and dynamic boards for your business!

See the Social Media Guide for the comprehensive approach to this topic.