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Esmeralda Lombard asked this question on my Facebook page yesterday: Hi, I’m using Pinterest for my personal use. How will it benefit using it for a business. For example our 3 expo products? If you have a company website, why use pinterest?

By some accounts Pinterest is now the worlds 3rd largest social media platform after Facebook and Twitter. Further, it has been said that Pinterest drives more website traffic than other social media platforms.  A bold statement that is probably arguable.  But it can’t be ignored that it is a phenomenon.  I hope it lasts and builds on its early success.

What is Pinterest? Pinterest is a social network that allows users to visually share, curate, and discover new interests by posting, also known as ‘pinning,’ images or videos to their own or others’ pinboards (i.e. a collection of ‘pins,’ usually with a common theme). users can either upload images from their computer or pin things they find on the web.

The Pinterest quick glassary:

  • A Pin: An image or video added to your Pinterest profile
  • Pinboard: The place on your profile on which pins are placed.  These are usually theme-based i.e. “Kitchen styles” or “wedding dresses”.
  • Pinning:  The act of placing pins on a pinbaord.
  • Repin: If you like someones pin you can pin it to one of your pinboards.
  • Pin It Button: A button that can be placed on website to make it easier to pin images from that website.  Pins using this button will link back to the original site (driving traffic to your site).
  • Pinner: The person doing the pinning.

People using Pinterest can browse through other peoples pins and interaction is encouraged through liking, commenting or repinning as with any other social network.

Back to the original question: If you have a website, why use Pinterest? Quite simply: To drive traffic to your website. How does this work?

If you place pictures on Pinterst using the Pin It Button this will link back to the source – your website.  This link will travel with as people repin your pins. Pinterest also provides a means to share pins on Facebook and Twitter further increasing the reach of your pins and, again, exposing your website to more eyes.

Essentially it is another channel, yet another way for people to discover you and then interact with you. Because Pintrest has become so popular it is worth paying attention to.

I’d love to hear from anyone who has used Pinterest successfully (or not).  Good luck!

4 Response Comments

  • EsmereldaApril 19, 2012 at 1:13 pm

    Thanks Ryan, next question. As you know I manage our 3 products. I log into my account and then direct to the 3 products. I have played around, but can’t seem to pin item for the products, so it directs visitors/users to our sites. If I use Pinterst it is for my personal account. How do I get around that, what am I doing wrong? 

    • Ryan HogarthApril 19, 2012 at 1:21 pm

      Thanks Es, there are two way to do this but first the images you want to pin must be on your website, then:
      1. go to http://pinterest.com/about/goodies/#pinmarklet and install this button for your browser.  Go to your website and click the “Pin It” button and then select the image you want to pin. 
      2. Using the same link above you can get install a “Pin It” button on your website.  This will also allow visitors to your site to pin images or videos to their pinterest boards. 

      In both cases the images will appear with a link back to your website.  I hope that has answered your question but if not, please ask away!

      • EsmereldaApril 19, 2012 at 2:35 pm

        Thanks. What I’m getting at is, when you pin, how do you select a pic for your product profile. If I log in to FB, I use my personal details (email + password) and then I click on Sign Africa (for example) from the drop down menu. Now when I pin it doesn’t give me an option to choose Sign Africa. A window pops up, asking if I want to log in via FB or Twitter. Hope that makes sense what I’m having problems for. Should I rather create a brand new Pinterest profile for each product? Would that be the easiest?

        • Ryan HogarthApril 20, 2012 at 10:32 am

          Ok, I think I get you now.  At this point there is no admin panel to manage brand pages like there is on FB.  You would have to either make pinboards for your brands or open an account for each.  The last is the better option because you then reserve your brands name. But it does make managing 3 brands more demanding on your time. 


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