One of the pervasive myths about Pinterest is that it is fundamentally a way for businesses to sell their products. This myth might lead you to believe that if you sell a service that there is no place for you on Pinterest. However, that’s not really how Pinterest works. To understand how you can use Pinterest to promote your services, you need to understand how people use Pinterest.
Pinterest describes itself as a visual bookmarking tool that helps you discover and save creative ideas.
Notice that there is no mention of buying or selling anything. The platform enables discovery and ideas, not products and services. So, how does that help you? No matter what your business is, you have ideas and inspiration to offer potential customers. The key is to put their needs and wants first.
To share interesting and relevant information, you need to know what your ideal customer finds interesting and relevant. In other words, you need personas. If you haven’t built your persona’s yet, that’s your very next step. Check out “Why Should They Buy From You” for tips on building buyer personas.
Assuming you have done this work… Coming up with ideas for pins that your customers would enjoy gets much easier.
How-tos might seem counter-intuitive. Why show them how to do something you are offering to do for them? DIY/Crafts is one of the top pinned categories on Pinterest. Pinners love to get ideas for cool new things. By providing "how-to" pins, you are building your reputation as an expert. When you are a source of inspiration and knowledge, you are also the top of mind resource when they can’t be bothered or don’t have the time to do it themselves.
Inspiration and Knowledge
Another option is to provide information that helps them further understand the service they are researching. Let's say, you are a massage therapist. Pinning lists of benefits of massage, examples and descriptions of types of massage, prescriptive massage solutions and massage etiquette will help your potential customers find the information they need to book their next appointment.
A few practical considerations:
As I mentioned in “Is Pinterest Right For Your Business?” there are some basic things you need to have in place before you begin with Pinterest
- Do you have a website and does it enable sales? In the case of service provider, this might mean a way to book a service or easily make a call to find out more about you.
- Mobile friendly. It is particularly critical that your website be mobile friendly when you are using Pinterest. 75% of users are accessing Pinterest from a tablet or a phone. So clicking through to a site that does not work on those devices just frustrates your potential customer
- Make sure you are using pin descriptions. If you want customer's to find you, you need to include things like your location and the types services or needs your customers would be searching on Pinterest.
- Top categories for Pinterest are Food & Drink, DIY & Crafts, Home Décor, Holidays & Events and Style & Fashion. Consider these categories, if you are not in them, can you connect them in some way? For example, if you build pools you can connect easily to Home Décor. If not, it will be harder for you to find an audience. In which case your energy is better spent on a different channel.