1) Basically, Pinterest.com is where people, mainly women go to search for visual ideas like design, architecture, kitchen, sinks, gardens, waterfalls, living rooms, deserts, fashion, vacation spots. Anyone can search with or without a Pinterest account at www.pinterest.com.
2) People can create an account to "pin" items they like. They create categories of "pins" called "Boards". Popular examples of categories include, home decorating or travel or kitchens, or healthy food, or cookies, or evening gowns - whatever you have a passion for.
3) As an online marketing consultant, I start all business sessions by asking what they want to be known for. (i) If any of their stated items are visual we consider Pinterest as an option for them, I do NOT believe that a business should be on all social media platforms. So, to see if Pinterest would be effective, we start by searching with their categories or keywords to see if there is activity, ie search results they'd like to be apart of. (ii) Then we see if that business already has visuals on their own website or blogs they could use as materials to start their own Pinterest Boards. If they do, we create their own Pinterest Boards, I like it when we can reflect their website's categories, like Elmhirst will with their new website and Pinterest Board being Farm to Table and so forth. Next we create a plan for them going to forward to use appropriate jpegs in their blogs/websites so they can create a "pins" FROM their blog/website. It's critical for a business owner to learn to pin from their blog / website to Pinterest so that when someone clicks on their Pin it takes them back to their blog/website. (Yes, they can upload a jpeg from their computer, but, it's much more effective to "pin" from their website so they generate referral traffic fromPinterest to their Website. I have an old blog post, http://sofieandreou.
blogspot.ca/2012/05/creating- your-business-pinterest.html which lists the basic elements a business needs to have in their Pinterest account to be effective.
It's very easy to use, see my blog on 5 reasons businesses use Pinterest, http:// sofieandreou.blogspot.ca/2012/ 06/5-reasons- resorthospitality-industry. html 5 Reasons Resorts/Hospitality Industry use Pinterest.
4) After the Monday's Chex Newswatch: The 5 O'Clock Show I was asked why should a business use Pinterest and not just let people search on Google to find their website. One answer is, that large numbers of people are already going to Pinterest to search for certain topics, so, IF your products or services are any one of those items, you are missing out by NOT being on Pinterest. I do NOT agree that EVERYONE should be on every social media platform, it's a waste of time and resources, they should only be on those where their target market happened to already be searching for things which relate to them.
5) Pinterest etiquette for businesses.. As Ann Douglas on that same Chex Newswatch: The 5 O'Clock Show rightly said, you should pin your own and "RePin" other's complementary images into your Boards. See how http://pinterest.com/annmdouglas/ Ann supports her community and is supported right back! That's the key to growing your followers on Pinterest, just like any other Social Media Platform. (Of course, her quality is outstanding!) As I said in our first, second and third Social Media spot on ChexTV, you should post/pin 5 times information which is informative and educational and 1 post/pin which is self serving. See http://pinterest.com/
powersfineart/, Ken reflects a solid example of supporting your community and they support you back, he is the artist I use as an example for online marketing excellence as an Artist. Ken has ONE board of his own Paintings which were pinned from his Website, and then he has created other boards full of RePins of artists he believes in. He stands for wonderful Art. He supports his artist community and in return, they support him. He knows if someone is looking for good art, they aren't going to buy his art each time, but, he'll like to be known for supporting excellent art. It's like buying a car, you go to a car dealership, they're all located in the same area. So, on Pinterest, what visual do you want to be known for, Pin your own, and support complementary visual excellence.
6) On Chex Newswatch: The 5 O'Clock Show interview we didn't get into advance Pinterest uses, and touched lightly on Business Pinterest. That would be a whole other spot, on how to use it as a productivity this tool within a company and between departments or partners ONLY to share visuals! For example, Pinterest's new Private Boards enable you can use Pinterest as a place to share visual ideas within a closed group, like your clients or a volunteer group who are agreeing on which visual materials work best. Very powerful! With Pinterest Business Accounts, you can also set it up so certain employees have access to JUST certain Boards, like at Elmhirst Resorts, their fabulous Chef will access Farm to Table, and their Outdoor Activities director will access, of course, the Activities board (stay tuned, as their new website and boards will be launching shortly!)!
Check out my Pinterest board at www.Pinterest.com/SofieAndreou ENJOY!