Are You Winning At Pinning?

You’re ready to take the plunge, and get started on the most winning “visual” social media platform! Just as you should with everything else in social media, align your Pinterest strategy at the very get-go with your online marketing goals, to produce maximum benefit for your business.

What exactly do you want to achieve? Driving traffic to your website? Increase your brand awareness and create a buzz? Do you want to expand customer engagement and increase sales, or is your objective to engage with brand fans, advocates and influencers?areyouwinning

Getting started is easy:

Start by creating 9 pinboards in areas that interest you or those designed to create engagement with your clients or customers. Focus on these 9 boards, making each board a showcase for your subject or category; selecting pins you want to be known for and or associated with. Aimlessly mixed boards of pins will lose your audience focus very quickly.

Once you find which boards inspire engagement, create more of similar interest. And as you create additional boards, remember that people are most inclined to look at the top two rows of 9 boards, so change the order frequently, and when you find a board that really resonates with your audience, you know what to do  create more of the same!

Select your strategic networking focus:

Here are four networking strategies used successfully by big brands and small business.

1.Create boards to showcase expertise & tell a story

Showcasing your expertise does not mean creating pinboards which are only focused on you, what you do, or only focused on the products and services you sell. Create boards that interest your customers. What you feature on your Pinterest boards, and how you organize the boards engages your audience and promotes you in their eyes.

Select Pinterest board topics that have the greatest interest to your target audience; name and describe the boards with targeted words and phrases, and consider SEO. Categorize your board with care in one of the Pinterest categories.  Note, ‘other’ is not a category!

Some examples of boards you might create are: sharing history, sparking ideas, Inspiration, aspiration, product use ideas, behind the scenes, aligning your brand with your customers lives, showcasing your web or blog

2.Create a contest to engage customers

Contests are great promotional tools to engage with customers and Pinterest does this visually like no other platform. Everyone loves contests, and the “pin it to win it” contest strategy is quite easy to implement, even if you are a small business on a low budget.

An example of a “pin it to win it” contest asks people to pin a particular image for a chance to win a drawing, or it can be a photo competition on any compelling subject, where your followers choose the winner by re-pinning.  A contest can ask people to pin an image of themselves using your product, or offer a prize for the best board on a chosen topic. Two of the many apps that you can use to run a contest are Woobox and Votigo.

If you’re just starting out on Pinterest and you want to get some likes and followers quickly, then running a contest might be the perfect strategy for you!

3. Create collaborative boards to promote your customers or products.

When you create a collaborative board of guest-pinners on Pinterest, it puts you in front a wider audience; as you not only reach your own followers, but the followers of all your guest collaborators. This is especially beneficial when your guest-pinners already have a large following on Pinterest, and promote the collaboration focus on other social networks such as Facebook, twitter and G+.

A collaborative board amplifies brand loyalty and drives more traffic to your website or blog.

When you focus on a collaborative board strategy it ignites engagement. Several ways to do this are: request pins for a specific purpose and seek out the experts to pin, create a blitz campaign, pin-populate a pin-board in a given time frame with a focused purpose (this might have a charitable orientation), hold a pin-party, share ideas, resources and opinions; this includes discussion boards, testimonials and profiling customers.

Remember to create guidelines for the collaboration boards so everyone knows what is expected, and so your expectations are met. Guidelines for collaborative Pinterest boards include; who is your core audience, what is the objective for the board, why the guest-pinners were asked to pin, what types of pins you are looking for (ideas, feelings, images), and don’t forget promotional dos and don’ts.

Create collaborative boards which customers and fans will be passionate about; it might be anything; an interest, hobby, product, social good, or even pet design

Be strategic, and pick the best collaboration partners or team to enhance your brand and drive the traffic you need to grow your business.

4. Create boards to showcase a community or non-profit.

Pinterest is about starting a conversation; communities grow around conversations, which are sparked by shared vision and interests. On Pinterest the shared interests of the community are shown visually on pinboards.

  • A pin community board can be a pin-party, which is a scheduled get together, often using a hashtag similar to a twitter chat where a group of people might pin and comment with a subject matter expert guest. Some Brands have a pin-party for a product introduction. HGTV does this well!
  • A blogging platform board showcasing the posts and/or bloggers themselves, drives more traffic to the blogging community.
  • Event boards can attract participants to sign up and start the conversation; pinning before, during and after the event!
  • A non-profit organization board can curate inspiration for your donors. The National WildLife Federation (NWF) does this well.

Pinteresting ways to implement your strategy:

When designing your strategy, don’t confuse it with the tactics. The tactics are what you do to implement your strategy Any of the following tactics can be used effectively to implement your strategy to produce results, enhance your personal or business brand, and grow your business

  • Re-pinning Pinning attractive, suitable, focused content for your audience will increase the likelihood of having it re-pinned. Re-pinning is the sharing focus on Pinterest that goes viral from time to time. It is an effective way to grow your followers and the people you follow. Descriptions allow you to use keywords for SEO and be found online via search more often.
  • Like Liking a pin shows appreciation; I like the pin, or even I’d like to connect and be noticed. Liking a pin adds the pin to your profile’s “likes” section rather than a specific board for likes, and you’ll see the person who ‘liked’ it. This gives you an opportunity to profile members of your audience by researching their social footprint. Pinterest is an excellent way to gather demographic information.
  • Tag Tagging people with the @ sign is a convention made popular on twitter. When you tag someone it draws their attention to your action; do you want them to notice your pin, your description of the pin or even a board description if you tag them there.
  • Hash-tagging Hash-tagged content makes it easier to find and to search. It was first used on twitter but now is mainstream on other social networks including Pinterest.
  • Comment Commenting on pins is often under-utilized for networking and engagement on Pinterest. It’s as easy to comment on a pin as it is on a blog post. Spend some of your engaging time on Pinterest, adding to the conversation by commenting.
  • Follow You can follow a person, and this action automatically follows all their pinboards, or you can follow only the individual pinboard that interests you. The action of following can get you noticed, but more important it gives you access to more content to re-pin, like, and comment on. When we follow someone’s pinboards, we learn about their likes and dislikes and much more. It helps in defining our audience and how to engage with them.

Remember to pin consistently, and remember an effective social media mindset applies here as well

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CASUDI aka Caroline Di Diego
Caroline Di Diego aka CASUDI is a Social Media whisperer helping Brands, Communities and individuals find their social voice. She is the creator of the successful Entrepreneurs Questions blog; an effective self-help resource for Entrepreneurs. She is an award winning documentary film-maker, using New-Media to tell people's stories with impact. Esse Group, boutique consultancy has been helping companies move from concept/chaos to fundable and or profitable for over 25 years. INCLINEDESIGN focuses on Architectural Design solutions. She is a Co-Founder of the non-profit BankOnRain, solving the global water crisis with an available resource, THINK RAIN! . She is an avid guest blogger
CASUDI aka Caroline Di Diego
CASUDI aka Caroline Di Diego




  • March 1, 2014


    Thanks so much for this Casudi. I joked with Amber-Lee that I hadn’t yet gone down the rabbit hole of pinterest, so I’ve bookmarked your post for when I do take action on this. Cheers! Kaarina

  • March 1, 2014


    KDillabough That’s exactly what I had in mind with this post ~ for savvy SoMe people who just haven’t quite made it down “the rabbit hole” as you say, to have the information they need to get started in a time and cost effective way. Good luck, and remember I am always available to help.

  • March 1, 2014


    CASUDI I may just be taking you up on that:) I shared your post on g+ and Brian Meeks said he and I should set a date to start. We’re going to become pinning buddies, and we’ll be calling on you if/when we need ‘help’!

  • March 1, 2014


    KDillabough Please do, I’ve helped about 30+ people get started and when you break things down to simple tasks, the learning curve goes very fast. So much of what you already know about SoMe can be applied here.

  • March 1, 2014


    CASUDI Thanks: I appreciate it!

  • March 1, 2014


    DJThistle gingerconsult nope! Have to work on it!

  • March 1, 2014


    I LOVE Pinterest!! LOL, it is truly a rabbit hole for me! I LOVE all the pretty pieces of our wonderful planet as well as all of the funny, interesting, inspiring, motivating quotations and just STUFF! You can truly find anything there- and when I draw a blank “what to write, what to write…” I ALWAYS go pinning! LOL.

  • March 1, 2014


    kathikruse CASUDI gingerconsult Naw. Pinning is winning me lol

  • March 1, 2014


    louiebaur Are U serious? Not yet pinning? kathikruse gingerconsult

  • March 2, 2014


    AlaskaChickBlogMy favorite story on the benefit of “pinning” came from an interior designer I’d met on a twitter chat who was on Pinterest and pinning 24/7 or so it seemed. I asked her how and why was she pinning all day and all night (and that was before scheduled pins) and she answered that when she was pinning , she did not snack and when she didn’t snack (or even eat) she lost weight…. so pinning was a great lose weight benefit for her!
    Let’s connect on Pinterest, I am CASUDI, of course ~ however I spend more time helping others than doing it myself these days.

  • March 2, 2014


    CASUDI kathikruse gingerconsult Yeah I am good. Just not enough time in a day. My page looks like a ghostown lol!

  • March 2, 2014


    louiebaur Looks respectable ~ I like the 2 & 4 wheel ones kathikruse gingerconsult

  • March 2, 2014


    Really helpful post CASUDI!  I’ve been reluctant to jump into Pinterest because quite honestly it wasn’t clear to me how it could add value to others and align with my brand interests.  You have me thinking for which I’m grateful.

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