Often, entrepreneurs and professionals shy away from social networks as a means of promoting their businesses because they are unfamiliar with the technology or think that it only exists for communicating with friends and family. On the contrary, ehe wide variety of social media websites means the web provides a marketing option that can fit any industry's needs - architects to plumbers and chefs to veterinarians.
Pinterest is one of the newer arrivals on the social media scene, and has been growing rapidly in the past few months. Its format is different from the likes of LinkedIn and Twitter, relying more heavily on visuals than text.
For the skeptics out there, lets take a likely UNinteresting Pinterest player: a financial services professional. Some may say that because financial services is numbers-based, it lacks the exciting illustrations and pictures that retailers or other industries could use. However, Ron Shevlin, a senior analyst with Aite, writes for The Financial Brand that some financial companies have already thought of innovative ways to use Pinterest's "pinboard." If financial services is making Pinterest fun and engaging, imagine what others can do!
For instance, if your company has invested a significant amount of money in printed marketing materials, consider posting those images on a Pinterest board. Shevlin cites That Credit Union Blog, which advised banks and credit unions to try posting news about the community or suggestions for saving money on their boards. Extending that idea to financial services, pinning up tips on insurance or asset management, similar to what a financial advisor might offer in a newspaper column, could draw in more prospects.
Entrepreneurs who are looking for new ways of marketing their business could try a similar tactic. The concept is not much different from sending out an email newsletter to your clients that compiles articles you think they would find interesting and valuable.
Apply that sentiment to Pinterest. Think of it as a way to spread awareness about your products and services and engage clients visually. Remember not to make the process too complicated.
Join Pinterest and take a look around at what others are doing. Does it inspire you to think of artistic, moving or thought-provoking ways in which you could visually represent what you do, your values, your products, your services, etc. Also, you may consider commissioning a series of infographics and posting them to the board. They can offer an engaging, highly visual case for how prospects can benefit from your services or enjoy your products.
Pinterest is not a marketplace to sell your products. Instead, Pinterest is about driving traffic and growing your brand, as well as creating the opportunity to spark interest and engage people in your brand.