People either love it or hate it. Forbes blogger David Coursey called it “Facebook with training wheels” in a recent article in which he said that Facebook’s purchase of Instagram would kill Pinterest.
The same day, CNBC aired a story titled “Why Pine for the Pinterest Customer? They’re Worth More.” Here are three of the comments that business owners or marketers made during the CNBC segment:
- “Customers who come to (our) website from Pinterest have a 70 percent larger ticket overall than those that come from other social media sites.”
- “[CEO] suspects that shoppers referred from Pinterest buy more because they may have already formed an emotional connection to the product.”
- Pinterest is “exploding,” with traffic coming from Pinterest growing substantially in the first two months of the year.
Referral traffic – that is the percentage of Pinterest visitors who click on links to go to other sites, is far higher on Pinterest than other social media sites, according to Mashable.com, which ranks Pinterest as the #3 social media site, with 104 million visitors. Here’s the ranking:
- Facebook: 7 billion
- Twitter: 182 million
- Pinterest: 104 million
- LinkedIn: 86 million
- Tagged: 72 million
- Google+: 61 million
Despite those numbers, Pinterest may not be right for every marketer. How do you know if it’s right for you? Start with these questions.
- Are your customers predominately female? 87% of Pinterest users for women between 25 and 54.
- Is your brand highly visual in nature? Pinterest is all about the pictures!
- Is there a planning element to your brand? Weddings, birthday parties, vacations, building or redecorating a home, gardening, pets and hobbies, fashion – those are the kinds of businesses that lend themselves to Pinterest.
Email + Pinterest = Faster ROI
Once you’ve determined that Pinterest is for you and your brand, follow the social media best practices you’ve learned in other media. Be relevant, be active, be social.
The first step in tapping Pinterest’s potential to add to your social media ROI is to create Boards that mirror the interests and activities of your customers or followers. You’ll want to have customized boards for different segments of your email database, and of course you’ll want to know who is pinning from your site and engage them on other social platforms as well.
Then start pinning email to Pinterest for faster ROI, by linking your email marketing campaigns to your Pinterest usage. Here are the five most productive ways to increase social media ROI by linking the two.
- Include “Pin This” icons on content inside your email or newsletter.
- Deploy special emails designed to educate your database about Pinterest, especially if your brand (or parts of your audience) haven’t joined yet.
- Include visuals of Pinterest activity in your email campaigns, including the Pinterest activity of your most social community members.
- Tie specific boards to your email marketing calendar (holidays, big events, social media trends, special sales, or any popular Pinterest category that’s relevant to your brand).
- Add the Pinterest icon to your standard social media sharing icons – including in email campaigns and newsletters.
Another social media best practice is to pin (update your Pinterest boards) around email deployment schedules to complement the email message with social media. (If you’re not already doing this with your other social media channels such as Facebook and LinkedIn, why?)
- Prepare your boards before an email, so that they’re ready to help you sell when traffic spikes
- Keep your boards looking fresh by rearranging them frequently so featured pins are “above the fold” (at the top of the page).
- Stay social – repin other people’s pins, monitor the community, and start a conversation with users.
- Highlight Pins about events or products in email
What’s piquing your Pinterest? What do you want to share with prospects and customers? How can you communicate those things through email and social media? Those are the key questions that will determine whether or not pinning email to Pinterest for faster ROI should be a key part of your marketing plan. My guess is that if you’re using both email and social media, then you’ll find that linking them together in a planned, coordinated effort will make a significant positive change in your social media ROI.