How to Sell Your Products on Pinterest
There are many businesses out in the wilds of social media that are simply looking to have a social presence, even if it is ineffective. They want their number of followers pumped up, but do not have any real expectations of selling anything. Other businesses and brands are engaged in full-out omnichannel marketing and work hard to track and increase their social media return-on-investment.
Pinterest has over 100 million active users. They are likely consumers who are accustomed to shopping from the platform. Eighty-seven percent of Pinterest users have made a purchase after finding a product on the social media channel. Building a large following on Pinterest can mean some fun and scoring free social media selling at the same time.
A social media strategy includes a blend of platforms, creatives, a targeted audience, quality content, paid social ads, and organic (free) social posts. Regardless of what social media strategy a business uses, paid or organic, or blend of both, relevant content that users want to engage with is needed for a successful campaign.
One aspect of any social media strategy is to understand the audience and the content that resonates best with them. Next, capitalize on the strengths of each social channel and use that information to execute a well thought out plan.
There are more than 50 billion Pinterest Pins on over 1 billion boards – 75% of those Pins are brand related. Quality content can help your brand stand out on the endless stream of Pinterest images. Use these tips to help your social selling campaign succeed on Pinterest.
The social media image
Pinterest is a visual social channel. A clear product image is critical. The reality is a clear product shot is crucial for all marketing whether it be on your website, in traditional media, or on any other social media channel! Pinterest, however, is different from other social channels. Although Pinterest will accept an image with any aspect ratio as long as it meets the minimum size requirement, taller images work best.
According to Pinterest, the best aspect ratio for Pinterest images is between 2:3 and 1:3.5, with a minimum width of 600 pixels. Try using an image that is 730 pxiels wide by 1100 pixels tall. Tall images work well because they take up more real estate in the Pinterest feed. Take a moment to scroll through your Pinterest app (or desktop version). Tall images catch your eye and get noticed!
Pinterest gives users 500 characters to describe the image and offer. Do a bit of keyword research and find relevant search words or phrases that describe what is in the photo and what you are selling. Use Google, SEMRush, Adwords, Pinterest Analytics or YouTube searches for your research. Use those keywords in the Pin description. Use the keywords as hashtags too. Just like the image, longer descriptions cause a Pin to take up more space in the feed.
Pinterest truncates desktop descriptions at 45 characters and mobile app descriptions at 58 characters. Considering many Pinners leave the description short or even blank, a full description can give your pin more visibility.
What to share
Now that you have committed to selling on Pinterest, the next step is to decide what to use as a creative. A clear product image works well. A tall image demonstrating your product work better. Show a three or four-step tutorial that shows them the results of a product. Creating a graphic is easier than you think. If you are not comfortable with Photoshop or other graphic design software, then try Canva or Pablo.
The popular Pinterest topics (beauty DIY, home decor, food, and fashion) are easy, no-brainers that do well with images. Is the “product” you’re selling actually a service? Consider using a back office photo of your team hard at work or that of a happy customer. Try an infographic to demonstrate its usefulness. Although, I have heard the rumblings of the “death of the infographic” they are still okay in Pinterest.
Add a video
Unbounce reports that including a video that demonstrates the product on a landing page can increase conversions by 80%. Like LinkedIn, Pinterest does not host videos, but does allow them to be uploaded as long as they are hosted on one of these sites: YouTube, Vimeo, or TedTalks. In addition to a product image or mutli-step tutorial, ad a video to your campaign strategy.
Pin to a relevant board
Now that you have your creatives all set, where are they going to live? Even paid Promoted Pins must be saved to a board before they can be turned into an ad! Create a board with search engine optimization in mind. Name your Pinterest board with a keyword phrase that will enable your product to be found. This will require some research. Tools like Google AdWords (you do not need to spend any money, just open an account), SEM Rush, or even searching organically on Google or YouTube can offer ideas for poplar terms
Pin to a group board
Join group boards with big followings and share your Pin on these boards. After uploading your Pin, go back in a day or two save the Pin to yet another board. Repeat this process, but remember you will have to join the group boards ahead of time.
Use Rich Pins, Buyable Pins, Promoted Pins
Pinterest offers unique types of posts. Most of them are available to budgets of all sizes with no special hooks required. A few types are still out of reach for the average user. Rich Pins involve to addition of Meta data to an ecommerce website. If you are not using your own website as the campaign landing page (e.g. Amazon.com), then Rich Pins may not be possible because access is needed to the backend to set this up.
Buyable Pins are those Pins with blue prices that appear in–stream and at the top of category pages. The blue price tags really make Buyable Pins standout. An ecommerce store must be hosted on one of five ecommerce platforms: Shopify, Demandware, BigCommerce, Magento, or IBM Commerce to use Buyable Pins.
If your brand does not have a large following on Pinterest, or if it does not fit into one of the popular categories, then a paid social ad, called a Promoted Pin, may be in order. Promoted Pins are Pinterest versions of paid social media ads. They are open to any budget size and require no special software, backends or programming. Targeting has improved quite a bit in the last three months so if you have not revisited the newer targeting options, then reconsider this as part of your brand strategy.
The landing page
Ah, the forgotten landing page! So many campaigns flop because they bring the user to the home page and leave potential shoppers, like lost puppies. A quality landing page is an essential part of any serious campaign. A shift in position, the addition or removal of certain content, or even something innocent as the color of a button can have an impact of conversion rates.
If you do not have the time or team to conjure up a new landing page, then try Unbounce or Leadpages for quick WYSIWYG setups!
Disclaimer: I receive a commissions for purchases made through Shopify ad SEMRush links in this post