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Pinterest power: pinning your customers’ muse

Pinterest has been bringing in more traffic to websites than LinkedIn, Google+ and YouTube put together in 2012.

Pinterest has been bringing in more traffic to websites than LinkedIn, Google+ and YouTube put together in 2012.

Pinterest has made it among the top names in social media in 2012 after shooting to fame over a period of four months, even after we thought that we had seen it all in the world of social networks.

Pinterest is a visual pin board and a social publishing site based on images – something on the lines of Tumblr meeting Flickr. Each user normally has a themed board or boards where to pin things found all over the web. Its visual appeal seems to have triggered its extensive growth – Pinterest is the fastest site in history to reach 10 million unique visitors per month.

The social photo pin board has taken the web by storm and agencies have followed suit to find out more about the devoted ‘pinners’.

Data from ComScore shows that the majority of Pinterest users are women aged 25 to 34. The average user spends around 98 minutes a month on this site and the daily use has increased by more than 145 per cent since the beginning of the year. Another study by lemon.ly proves how Pinterest has been bringing in more traffic to websites than LinkedIn, Google+ and YouTube put together in 2012.

Since Pinterest is one of the hottest social media sites at the moment, it is no surprise that marketeers are interested in its use and benefits. Some brands are already taking advantage of Pinterest while others are still wondering how to use it.

Companies need to keep some points in mind when they consider the visual pin board as part of their social plan. Original and unique images tend to encourage user interaction, such as re-pinning, liking or commenting.

People must create exclusive images of products or services, encouraging even more Pinterest activity and traffic towards their site or blog. And as with any other social medium, you cannot just pin your pictures to your board – a marketeer needs to build relationships and re-pin others’ content too.

Getting creative and hosting competitions is also possible on Pinterest. Business pages are not available here the way they are on Facebook.

Yet this makes it even more exciting as brands need to come up with clever ways of using it to connect with people.

British Midland International was among the first to come up with a Pinterest lottery. The airline launched a campaign which turned the Pinterest function of ‘re-pinning’ into a voting style game. It set up five boards on its Pinterest account of different locations – Beirut, Dublin, Marrakech, Moscow and Nice – with images of each . To play the game, users had to re-pin an image to be in with the chance of winning free flights.

Companies like British Midland International were happy to stem out of Facebook to use one more niche channel that helped them expose their brand.

It only takes some thinking for marketeers to find ways to use the social publishing site to promote their business. Yet one must never miss the most crucial step: drawing up a strategy.

Knowing what channels your audience is using, setting goals and ways on how to measure your performance is key to a successful social campaign.

Ms Grech is an e-marketing specialist at web design and development company Icon.

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