Want to use Pinterest to attract more local customers to your bricks-and-mortar business? Then check out my interview with Pinterest expert Vincent Ng of MCNG Marketing.
Vincent Ng is a Pinterest geek, marketer and speaker. He is the author of the book, Pictures to Profits with Pintalysis and the host of the Pictures to Profits podcast. Vincent’s also a big fan of Batman comics.
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Pinterest is a social media platform with tons of really committed users. It’s a great generate traffic to your website. But here’s the problem; if you own a local business like I do, you are generating traffic from people who are never going to be able to buy from you. So, there is actually a way to use Pinterest to generate local traffic to your website. Keep watching to find out how.
By the way, if you want to get a list of all of the tools that I use to market my own business, go to carmensognonvi.com/tools – I tell you everything from who we use for printing and graphic design, and I’ll even share with you the app that I use to make sure flyers are getting distributed in the right way.
So in this video I am interviewing Vincent Ang. He is a Pinterest expert who is going to share with us so many awesome tips, like, how to schedule pins on Pinterest. I bet you didn’t even realize that you don’t have to physically pin each thing, you can schedule them to go out. He’ll tell us how many times a day we should be pinning, in order to see results; and his answer really surprised me. And he’s going to show us exactly how to generate local traffic, using Pinterest.
He’s also got a lot of cool tips for you, on how to use Pinterest, even if you’re not in a visual industry, you know, if you’re in fashion or food, it’s pretty easy to thing of ways to use Pinterest to promote your business, but if you’re in a less sexy business, let’s say, insurance or plumbing, there are still ways to promote your business, and Vincent is going to show us how.
So here’s a quick little bio of Vincent. Vincent Ang is a Pinterest geek, marketer, and speaker. He is the author of the book, Pictures to Profits, with Pintalysis, and he’s the host of the Pictures to Profit podcast. Vincent is also a big fan of Batman Comics. I think that last bit was the most important. Alright, without further ado, here is my interview with Vincent.
Carmen: Alright, Vincent, thank you so much for joining me today.
Vincent: Yeah, my pleasure Carmen, I’m glad to be here.
C: Excellent. So, businesses that are visual are pretty easy to market on Pinterest. So if you have, maybe, a fashion, a retail store that sells clothing, or maybe you have a restaurant, it’s pretty easy to come up with ideas to promote yourself on Pinterest. Now, if we’re talking about a local business that is not so visual in nature, like maybe a plumber or – I don’t know why nothing else comes to mind.
V: Or maybe like an insurance company or something like that..
C: Yes, exactly. Something that is less visual, maybe less glamorous. What are some ideas for those kinds of businesses to be able to still use Pinterest in their marketing?
V: Yeah, I think when it comes to Pinterest, the beauty of if is that you need to think like you’re producing a magazine and I think, no matter what type of industry you’re in, there’s most likely a magazine for your industry, whether it is plumbing, or it is for insurance. So you think like that – so what kind of articles are going to be useful to them. What kind of blog content can you create? And then you want to create those images, and pinnable images, specifically, that are reflective of that.
So, for example, an insurance decided, hey you know what, we’re kind of boring, we’re stale, we don’t have anything creative, but they decide, we’re going to do this article about life insurance, but it’s going to be about the top ten things you didn’t know about death. And it sounds a little bit gruesome, but you go, okay, I don’t know those kinds of things. So for your specific example, you’re talking about plumbing, it might be about five common plumbing disasters you see in the home, and what to do about it.
C: And, you might not want to have too visual of an image to go with it.
V: Yeah, that one’s like, woah, let’s make it friendly. But that’s what I would suggest.
C: Okay. Awesome. And, one of the questions I have, and actually the whole reason that I came across your blog, is because I’ve been really trying to figure how can I actually make my pins show up in Pinterest. So, when I first started putting things on Pinterest for our business, Urban Marshall Arts, I would go in and do searches for keywords that are related to our business.
So, for example, kickboxing, or karate, just to kind of see what comes up. And, I would notice that even though we were posting a lot of content, somehow our pins would never come up in that feed. So, I was kind of – you know – did some research and tried to find some articles on how to actually make your pins show up. Or even tried to find some information on how does Pinterest determine what pins show up in that feed, when you search for a term. And, I have to say, that all of the so-called expert articles I came across were very fluffy and vague when it came to that, and kind of skirted around the topic. But then I came across an article that you wrote, and you got into nitty gritty stuff about exactly how it works.
So, I would love if you could kind of break it down and let our audience know, if you want your pin to show up, what are some of the key components that you need to include so that people actually see your pin.
V: Thank you, Carmen, I really appreciate those comments. I’m blushing inside, I really am. It is, I run across that every day with a lot of small business owners. They go, you know what, I’ve pinned something, I’ve done the key words, why is it not magically showing up on the Pinterest search? Well, first thing’s first, keywords are really important. You want to make sure that they are in your pin description, because that’s something that Pinterest factors in. But I think what’s going to be really interesting, and that most people don’t know, is really the engagement rate that a pin receives.
So, for example, when I talk about engagement rate, #1, are people actually repinning what you’ve posted, because you’re not just pinning your own stuff, you’re competing with other people. And the misconception is that oh, by the way, when I pin something that somehow it magically shows up on a search, similar to a Twitter search where everything is chronological order.
And that’s not the case. So making sure that you gets lots of repins is really important. But if you’re considering and going out there and you’re going to buy repins – which I’ve tested this out – that doesn’t quite work because it actually depends on who the users are. Are they actively engaged on Pinterest. So, more active users that repin your content help uplift that pin as well, for a specific term. And, I believe, and I can’t confirm, is, are people actually clicking through to the website, to see what’s actually happening? And so sometimes you will see pins that make it to the top of search and it leads to a media file, but I think it’s because people click on it, and it expands, so Pinterest goes, “hey, people are genuinely interested.”
And another factor that you really need to consider, is actually how you create your photos. And this is something that has been kind of relatively new in the last year or so, Pinterest actually bought out a visual recognition engine. So, it can actually recognize certain pictures, linked to certain words. And so for a client I had, they were into natural hair, and so one day I was aiming for the keyword “box braids,” and if you type in box braids on Pinterest, you will notice that almost all the pictures are relatively similar. So those kinds of things help when it comes to ranking high within a Pinterest search.
C: Wow, so that’s really fascinating. So, it’s not just about, let’s say, the text you’re using in your description or your file name. Pinterest is actually able to recognize the photo itself, and kind of analyze that, regardless of what kind of keywords are around it, right?
V: Yeah, and that’s the crazy part, too. And I think you’ll notice this – or anybody will notice this – if you post a picture… here’s a good example. So, I end up doing a pin that featured Nasa. It has two astronauts. So one is a modern astronaut. One is more the classic, Neil Armstrong type of gear. But really, the article is about how men can market on Pinterest.
But surprisingly, the related pins in that section were all about Nasa afterwards. So, it had nothing to do with marketing on Pinterest. So, they recognized, within the picture, hey, these guys are astronauts, it’s the same color that a lot of Nasa pins used, so that means, most likely, this is a pin about Nasa, even though it’s not.
C; Wow, that’s really cool. So, yeah, I guess if you want pin to show up, you’ve got to make sure that you’re using a relevant image, because Pinterest can actually analyze the image that you’re using. So, I know that in terms of getting your pins to show up, obviously using the right image is important, but you do also want to be mindful, also, of including keywords in the name of the image that you’re uploading. Also, if you’re pin is going to link to a webpage, it’s helpful if that keyword shows up in that URL as well, right?
V: Yes, it does, yea.
C: And I know that you mentioned that one of the key elements that determines whether it will show up high in the rankings “rankings” is the activity that the pin gets. So, how many repins, maybe how many clicks that people are clicking through. But I guess that that leads us to a little bit of chicken and the egg situation. Because, if you want your pin to show up, it has to get repins, but then if no one is seeing it, how do you you get those repins? Do you have any tips for, maybe, how we can jumpstart a little bit of activity, to, just kind of get the ball rolling so that we have a higher shot of things showing up.
V: Yeah, that’s a good question, and I agree, Carmen, the toughest part is where do you start? And, I think the best way to start is to ensure that if you can join a relevant group board, that’s very helpful. So, for those who aren’t aware of what a group board is, it’s basically a board where you can have multiple contributors contributing to a board on Pinterest.
So, again, if you happen to be into martial arts, there might be – and probably someone out that’s started a group board for mixed martial arts, so you might want to contact that person, or leave a comment in one of their pins, and say, “hey, I’d like to join. I run a mixed martial arts business or a martial arts business.” And I think that kind of warms them up, and that’s a good way to start.
But what’s really fascinating, when it comes to repin activity, is sometimes the pin that you want to go viral may not go viral and the pin that you don’t expect to go viral does go viral. So I really tell people, be consistent in your pinning, because you never know. But if you’re pinning good quality content, usually, at some point, and I can’t say it’s going to happen within the first two weeks, could happen two months, or three months from now, you’ll notice that your pin has a surge of repins.
So get at it, keep at it, make sure you’re using beautiful images, make sure it’s very practical, it’s useful, because the moment someone else pins it, they go, “hey, that’s useful, I love that, let’s repin that!” So that’s how you get the ball rolling.
C: Okay, that’s an awesome tip – so look for group boards. And I know that when it comes to blogger outreach, for instance, one of the best practices is to try to figure out who are the influencers in this particular category that you’re in. Is there such a thing as Pinterest influencers? And, if so, how do we go about finding people that have large large followings about a certain topic?
V: That’s actually a tough one. There aren’t a lot of what’d I say directories, with people who kind of list, “okay these people are big on crafts, and these people are big on recipes.” And, for me, a lot of times it is about – it’s what Pinterest wants – and, I find, is you kind of have to go through Pinterest and search, and discover, and click. And sometimes, again, if you search for Pinterest influencers, their names will come up. You know, for example, Hello Society will mention them. They’re a bit of a talent agency when it comes to Pinterest influencers.
Look for magazines and see, again, are there certain people that are being mentioned. And usually that’s how you start finding them. But, there isn’t a directory. But, in terms of kind of, you know, a lot of people ask, “What’s the power of influencers?” If they are within your target demographic and they are pinning stuff that you really – that’s kind of on the same message as yours, again, you can get 50 repins within a day, or in a very short time. But the misconception I think now is that people think, “oh, if an influencer pins something from me that it’s definitely going to go viral.” And that’s definitely not the case because Pinterest has a smart feed now.
So, what happens is if the influencers followers aren’t interested, Pinterest marketing I can have an influencer pin it, who has 100,000 followers – and this is a true story – but it only gets two repins because it’s not really relevant to that board, because, again, that board is about educational material for stay at home moms and schools. So, just because you get yourself repinned by an influencer doesn’t mean that it’s going to blow up. It has to be relevant to that influencer’s crowd.
C: Okay, so, even if you’re following a specific Pinterest account, you’re not necessarily going to see every pin that they pin in chronological order. It’ll still be kind of filtered, according to some of those things we mentioned, like how many – like how much activity the pin is getting, or maybe even – is it even personalized according to what you, as a user click on, as well, do you know?
V: Yeah, so the Pinterest smart feeds works, I would say, similar to Facebook, which is they’re filtering based on what you’re clicking on, and what your interests are. And they’re recording all of this activity – they don’y deny it. They’re like, “hey we’re recording your pinning activity to make sure we make better recommendations. And so, as time goes on, if you tend to click on more martial arts pins, they’re going to go, “hey, Carmen really likes martial arts pins, let’s show her some more.”
The hard part is, of course sometimes, when they’re starting off, it’s just like, this is just completely irrelevant, but as you start using it more and more, the feeds become customized towards you, and that’s kind of the interesting thing because, again, if you have 50,000 followers and they’re not really into martial arts, the truth is they may not see your stuff. That’s why you want to make sure you get the right followers, right from the very start, so that as many people can actually see it.
C: Okay, okay, that makes sense. So this is the part of the interview where I get a little bit self-serving. One of the reasons I wanted to reach out to you is because I have been doing a little bit of activity on Pinterest for our business, Urban Martial Arts, and I noticed, just a few weeks ago – actually I noticed over the past few weeks – that I was getting a lot of email updates saying hey, this pin is getting a bunch of repins. And so I would keep getting these emails here and there, and I was sort of casually glancing at it, but not really paying it much mind. And then I logged into our Google analytics the other day and I noticed that the #1 referring site to our website right now is Pinterest. And, I was really really surprised.
So I logged into our Pinterest account, just to see what is going on, and I realized that there are a couple of pins that have gone mildly viral. And so I thought, oh wow, I need to figure out maybe how can we capitalize on this, or maybe what are we doing right, what are we doing wrong. I did send you our Pinterest account and I would love to get your feedback. I think it’ll be instructive for other business owners to see this, as well, so you can get ideas of what works, what doesn’t, and maybe some things you can apply in your own business.
V: I took a look at your account, Carmen. I’m going to start off with what’s really awesome about it. #1 is I love the fact that you’re using long pins to really show of your blog posts. Because, that’s something that people have to keep in mind, is that when you’re creating a pinnable image, you’re competing with other pins. So, when you use a horizontal one it kind of shows up very tiny.
And the other thing I like is that the font is big enough that you can actually see it on multiple mobile platforms. I would imagine a lot of your clients, to be honest, are on the run, they’re on the go, they’re not really on the desktop. So, to be able to see a pin and go, “hey, I can read that!” about what to eat before kickboxing – which is one you’re talking about. 800 repins, which is fantastic – you’ve got to keep those things in mind. And what I really enjoy is that you’re creating resources that are helpful to people. And so, for example, if I was taking marital arts or kickboxing, should I eat? Should I not eat? And didn’t actually know that you’re muscles if you don’t eat something. So those little hints and those little resources can be of big help.
And so that’s that you want to keep in mind, what’s useful for the people you want to attract? And create pins around that. And see – so something, I know that with your account, and this is quite interesting, too, is quotes. So you write some really great inspirational quotes. But I do want to let people know that, generally, quotes don’t really get people to click through those. So, it’s good for branding, because it really inspires people, but, again, if it – if you give people the whole buffet instead of the appetizer, then they don’t have a need to click through to the website.
In terms of kind of what I would do with the account and to improve it. For sure, you want to be able to pin other people’s pins, as well. Sometimes it’s good to make it about your business, but if you repin other people’s content, then they notice that you’re repinning. So, again, you can use the Pinterest search box, use it to find martial arts, New York, and see if there are people actually blogging about your topic. Maybe there is someone, maybe it’s not a lot, maybe it’s three or four that blog about martial arts, and start pinning their content, pinning their blog posts. Go to their blog and pin their content, and share their stuff.
And so this way, now you’re not just sharing content for your followers, which they really appreciate, you’re also engaging that go, like yourself, “hey, I’m getting some extra traffic from Pinterest all of sudden, who is this Carmen person who is pinning this stuff?” Just as much as you’re surprised, it’s nice to be able to delight and surprise other people, as well. So that’s something I would definitely recommend.
C: Okay, awesome. And then, I guess related to that, if I was to start pinning other people’s content more, how – what’s the best way to organize that in terms in terms of the boards. Because that’s the other thing that I’m a little unsure about. Because I know that, for example on Instagram, when you click on someone’s profile, you tend to decide within the first 4 seconds, based on that first screen, whether this is an account you want to follow.
For example, on my Instagram account, I try to make it have a very consistent look, and have very consistent types of content, so it makes it very clear, right away, what I’m about. On Pinterest, does it work the same way? Do people usually end up on your profile, or do they usually end up on a specific board? And, I guess, what are some tips you can share on how to organize things and present them in an appealing way that also makes it clear, what is the value of following you on Pinterest?
V: Yeah, for sure, I think that that’s a really good question. And, I feel, that where Pinterest is going, is that your pins are going to become vitally important, because they’re trying to recommend more and more pins. They’re not so much into recommending boards, even though that does happen, for example, on the desktop version, if you pin something, you’ll see that, “also pinned on another person’s board.” So, that’s very common. In that kind of case, when you’re creating board covers, you might want to considered, hey, my board might be featured randomly on someone else’s, “check this out on this board.” So you may want to actually, instead of just having a picture, to actually create a graphic with text over it.
So, for your business, it might actually be martial art tips right on there. So instead of seeing somebody who’s just the kickboxing, you can actually say, it’s like somebody kickboxing but is says martial art tips there, so they look at it right away, they say, “you know what, this is a good board. I’m interested. Let’s click on it and check out there.” The other thing about the account, what’s really interesting, is, I think, people, when they go to your account, it used to be that people would follow multiple boards. But I think that’s happening a lot less now. So when you’re talking about your boards, or your general account, your first two boards are so vital. And you want them to be either relevant to either your audience or relevant to your business.
So I always tell people, your first board is the #1 board that people generally see. It should be really highly targeted to your audience. So it could be martial art tips and then you have lots of pins. And from there, you can kind of create boards, again, that are to your audience or are helpful to them. Again, if you feel like humor or entertainment is good; so, for example, martial art bloopers, and I’m sure, I know there are lots out there. That’s kind of relevant to them, because there’s somebody out there in the audience who says, “oh my god that happened to me, too, I can relate to that.”
So you want to create what’s right for them. But, again, make sure pins are gorgeous. Make sure that your board covers are relevant to your audience. Use text overlay so that, no only are you relying on the title of the board, but you’re using that extra space to say, hey this is about martial arts tips, or this is about crocheting, or whatever it is, so that people know that visually. And #3 is when you’re creating your account, make sure your first two boards are the ones that you want to audience to focus on the most, and from there create boards that are relevant to them.
C: Okay, and then within, so I know you said the first two boards are really the most important so you should really focus on those. Is it a good idea to have those first two boards be made up exclusively of your own content? Or, is it better to mix yours and other people’s content within a board?
V: Yeah, and so I think that depends on – to me, the way I see it, it depends on who popular the topic is, as well. So, for example, if you happen to be a recipe blog, and, again, you already have a pretty large following, there’s tons of people, then you can just pin your own recipes there and that’s absolutely fine. But, even then, I kind of suggest throwing in other people’s recipes once in a while, because, again, you’re trying to get people to notice your account, you’re sharing their content.
But it’s vitally important that, again, if it’s not a very popular topic, for example there are very sparse resources, you want to be able to put in other people’s pins and resources. And of course at the same time you don’t want to pin someone’s who’s going to be a direct competitor of what you’re doing. So, of course, if there’s somebody’s that’s teaching stuff that’s two blocks down, you don’t want to pin their stuff, because, I’m not going to lie, there might be a chance that their stuff is better than yours.
But that doesn’t mean that you can’t pin stuff from bloggers that write about martial arts or kickboxing or whatever it is, again, nutrition. So those things that are so important to your clients or to your business, bring them in so that what happens is that – this is the funny thing – what happens is that when a board gets more repins over time, so that when your pins are getting repinned a lot, Pinterest notices that. They go, “This person is getting a lot repins, therefore, I think we’re going to show their pins more often to their followers.” So, if you notice that, hey, I pin my own stuff, but there aren’t a lot of repins, then Pinterest goes, “Okay, this is probably not a very relevant board. People aren’t interested. So that’s when you want to bring in content from other people, as well, and see what kind of results. So hopefully that helps.
C: Yeah! That’s great. So, speaking of, you know, sort of content frequency, one question that I wanted to ask you is whether there is a way schedule pins ahead of time so that you don’t have to physically be clicking it in order to publish it. And then the other question I have is, what would you recommend to a local business who is maybe just getting started on Pinterest, in terms of what’s an appropriate publishing schedule – should should we be aiming for once a day? Once a week? Four times a day?
What would you recommend for someone who’s just getting their feet wet, but wants to have a consistent presence on Pinterest?
V: Scheduling is always one of those things, because people – you know, again, if you’re busy, sometimes you don’t have time to pin in real time, and I recommend Tail Wind, which is a great scheduling tool. It’s $9.00 US, per month, which allows you to schedule up to 400 pins, which is great for small businesses, and it also provides analytics, so you can see your follower growth and other statistics, as well.
But in terms of, again, how often should I pin, I think it’s like the #1 question every Pinterest marketer gets. And I tell people, when you’re starting off, depending on how aggressive you want results, if you want really fast results you will have to pin every day, I would say minimum of 10-15 quality pins. Again, if you can’t…
C: Oh, 10-15 per day.
V: Per day, yeah.
C: Oh, wow, that’s a lot.
V: Yeah, it is. So, and that’s the thing too, is that if you want to see results you have to be kind of aggressive with the platform. Because Pinterest rewards activity, it’s kind of a – they don’t tell you, but that’s exactly what they’re trying to do, is they’re trying to hook you on for saying, “hey you know what, you sure pin some good quality stuff, and because of that we’re going to reward you with more repins.
So it kind of does that, it’s a little bit tricky. But, at the same time, is if you don’t have time, try to do it every other day and if you can focus on something, don’t necessarily try to focus on trying to pin more stuff, try to pin quality stuff. As I said before, if Pinterest notices that you’ve been getting a lot of repins for your board, and that’s, they take that as a signal that you’re creating good quality content and they want to share that with other people.
So, go with that to start. Quite frankly, if you’re going to pin once a month, it’s not going to help much with the business. Again, there is a chance that your pins are going to go viral, that’s the beauty of Pinterest – you can always pin once or twice a month and something just happens magically. So you can go with that tactic as well, but I definitely suggest, give it a shot, take a look at Pinterest, and see if it’s really right for you.
C: Okay, so I was at a conference recently, and I sat in on a session about Pinterest and it was put on by a representative of Pinterest. And so, at the end of presentation he was asking for questions and so I raised my hand, and based on, you know some of these experiences I’ve mentioned, I asked him, “If you’re a local business, are there any tips you have for trying to get more local traffic to your website? Because right now, we have that pin that went viral, which is great, but people logging onto my website from Kansas City doesn’t really help me when I’m in Brooklyn, NY. I’m sure there’s some marginal SEO benefits to having those strong social signals coming in, which may, you know, help us go up a little bit in terms of the search rankings. But, it’s not really helping me get a new student or a new member.”
And the Pinterest guy just kind of talked for like 10 minutes and said a bunch of words didn’t quite answer my question to the point where everyone sitting around me was like, kind of rudely, “well, he didn’t answer your question.” So, I would love to get your take on this – on this question. So, is there a way to get local traffic on your Pinterest account? Or use Pinterest to get local traffic instead of just random traffic from all over the world?
V: Okay, so, I have to be honest, there – if you – okay, I have yet to read, and again, if Pinterest is listening to this, maybe they can correct me, but I have yet to see one, truly successful case of a local business using Pinterest very successfully. And what I mean by that, it’s like that has no national appear. So your business, again, like you’re saying, if you’re teaching kickboxing online video courses, then that’s different. That would totally rock on Pinterest. But if you’re trying to get people into a physical location, that’s really hard, and you can’t ship, for example, you can’t ship stuff out.
So, the thing I tell people, is, if you’re in the you’re really blessed because, in the US, you are allowed to actually advertise on Pinterest. No other country in the world, at this moment, as of 2015, February, can advertise. So what you can do is you can actually target people in NYC with Pinterest advertising. You have to go through the processes. And, so you can aim for key words. So, for example, when 2015 hit, you can aim for keywords that are health, fitness, martial arts, kickboxing, mixed martial arts, children’s fitness activities, after-school activities, those things you can put, and, to say, and have them aimed at New York.
And you can break it down by gender. So it could be women and it could be men. Again, if you feel like, hey, most of my clients tend to be mobile users, you know, then hey, guess what, then just advertise on the iPad, or the iPhone, or the Android devices. So you have so much that’s going on, and it’s really a lot of just testing. But, in my personal opinion, promoted pins/Pinterest advertising, that is probably the best way at this time to get targeted and local traffic.
C: Okay, so if I understand you correctly, if you’re just sort of going the organic route, it’s hard to narrow it down to getting local traffic, but if you want local traffic then the best way is to use Pinterest advertising. And it sounds like there are a lot of ways to really narrow that target by gender, by geography, and also by device, is that it? So you could just target people who use iPads versus desktop?
V: Yeah you can. So you can target people that are just on desktop or iPads, and that’s the beauty, you can kind of narrow it down. And basically Pinterest will tell you what the estimated amount of searches will be. So, if you, for example, aim for ten keywords and you find that this one aims at like 6,000 people then you have an idea of the potential of what your reach is. And so, again, you want to make sure that you’re choosing your keywords very carefully.
So, again, if you are about martial arts, maybe you don’t want to aim for the word furniture shopping. That just doesn’t make sense. It might be a large crowd, it’s like, hey there’s 100,000 impressions, but, again, it’s not the right crowd. But it’s something that’s worth experimenting, and definitely taking a look. And here’s the thing, too, that I advise, Carmen, is, because it’s so early, that a lot of people are not using it.
And I want people to keep in mind where Facebook advertising was about five years ago, when it was still new. It wasn’t crowded, and was still relatively cheap, and it had great potential. Pinterest is there right now. If you are a small business, take advantage of it early, now. Get that traffic to your site. Because I guarantee you you are going to kick your behind five years later when you go, you know what, I should have listened to Carmen and Vincent about that, why didn’t I? I promise, you will regret it if you don’t at least start playing around with the Pinterest advertising platform.
C: Okay, awesome. And what are some of the restrictions we should keep in mind when it comes to Pinterest ads, or promoted pins? Because I think you mentioned to me that you can’t link to pages that are overly promotional in nature, right? Can you kind of break down what we can and can’t do, in term of that?
V: Yeah, so, ultimately Pinterest will decide if your pin can be promoted or not. So there are some thing that say is a big no-no. For example, again, you can’t have some kind of, I think – you can’t use a link shortener. Things like that. But you can use a UTM tracking code. So for those that are familiar, they’ll know what it is, if not, Google it, it’ll explain it a little bit.
But the other thing is, a lot of people – and this is something that a lot of social media marketers will probably be excited about at first, when they realize that you can’t do this, “oh, I can use Pinterest to generate email signups and leads for my webinar and all this jazz!” I have to say, you can’t, because Pinterest is saying, no, we want preserve the integrity of Pinterest, so we’re not going to allow people to go directly to a landing page for email signups, for a webinar, or for your newsletter, or whatever it is. So that’s something that services have to caution and be careful about. And I think that’s the big thing that people need to be aware of.
Other than that, try it out. There are, honestly, tons of rules but again, if you are in the spirit of Pinterest, you’re creating great pins, it leads back to great content, you’ll be fine.
C: Okay, and then, if I may share a tip with our viewers here; one way that I think we could – that I think I could use Pinterest ads in this way, is that we would link to an article on our blog that’s, let’s say, about fitness kickboxing and it shares some kind of tips on how to get the most out of your training. So, it’s a useful article, but then at the end of the article we have an opt-in that says, “Hey! If you want to find out more about our kickboxing program, put in your email here.” So the opt-in should be on the page somewhere, but the who page is not necessarily about getting that email address.
So you don’t want to link directly to a squeeze page, but it is a really good idea, actually, if you are publishing articles, or if you have some kind of a blog to always have an opt-in at the end of that content, because that’s a way that you can really capture leads, who are interested – let’s say, you, and that’s also a way to help to narrow down into your local market, because if we have someone from Kansas clicking over through an organic pin, finding this article on kickboxing, they’ll be like, “oh, this is really good stuff.” but when they get to the bottom they’re not going to put in their email address because they’re not interested in seeing your schedule of class times, because they know that you’re in New York. But, if someone in New York is looking at that, then they may actually do that.
So that would be one way that – do you feel like that would be a way that you could use a promoted pin? Like that wouldn’t necessarily violate their restrictions?
V: Yeah, it wouldn’t violate the restrictions. Again, they have no problem with that. They just want to make sure that when your pins go somewhere, it is of value. And so, I want to clarify, “of value” doesn’t necessarily mean that it has to be a blog content. But, it should be valuable. It could actually be a product.
So, again, if you are a local business, and you do ship across the US, you can use promoted pins for that, it’s absolutely fine. They just don’t want it to – they don’t want people to feel forced to take an action. I think that’s kind of the best way to put it.
C: Okay, so they don’t them to feel forced to take and action. And, I’m guessing, probably also, they want to make sure that they promise of the pin lives up to what you get when you click through it. So if you are linking to a product page – let’s say you sell cheesecake – and the pin has a picture of strawberry cheesecake, then you click through, then it leads you to an order page where you can have a strawberry cheesecake shipped to you, that would be fine because it’s relevant. But, if you’re linking to, let’s say, “hey, sign up for our email newsletter!” there’s no mention of any strawberry or cheesecake anywhere, then there’s a disconnect. Do you think that’s accurate?
V: Yeah, that’s pretty accurate. Any time that Pinterest feels like you’re misleading them, or again, you’re trying to coerce people into taking an action, then they’re unhappy about that. But, as we said earlier, hey you’ve got a great kickboxing article, people love it – Pinterest loves that, because they want people to come back to Pinterest and rediscover new things, and new knowledge that you’ve provided.
C: Alright, cool. So, Vincent, thank you so much. I’m definitely going give promoted pins a try at some point. I will report back to you, Vincent, and to our viewers here, and kind of share what are the results. But, you are a fountain of knowledge. Thank you so much for sharing with us today. I’d love to have you on maybe another time to deep dive into some of the things that we couldn’t get into today.
V: It sounds good. Thank you so much Carmen, it’s been an absolute pleasure.
C: Thank you.
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Alright, so now it’s time for some shout outs. This week I want to shout out Jen from New Stylely, she’s got a really cool channel about entrepreneurialship, parenting, work, how to fit it all together; be sure to check her out.
Sherry Gorman, thank you for your lovely comment.
And, I also want to shout out Trey and Autumn from the Concord Life Channel. They are starting up a brand new channel, so be sure to check them out as well. I’ve linked to everybody below. So be sure to go see what kind of work they’re doing, and give them a shout.
Thanks for watching!
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