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Marketing Monday #16 – Getting Visual with Pinterest and Instagram as Marketing Tools

Pinterest and Instagram are social media platforms that are built on the use of visual tools.  Unlike other social media, Pinterest and Instagram are not about telling what you are doing, talking about what’s hot and notifying us that your dog just chewed your homework.  These sites show you!  The question is how can these sites be used to market your business?  Before we dive into that, I’ll quickly explain what these sites are and how they work.

Pinterest self describes itself as “a tool for collecting and organizing the things that inspire you”.  Think of it as a virtual corkboard, where you can pin anything that inspires you, that you like, that you want to remember, etc.  One of the nice things about Pinterest is that it allows you to segment your interests into different boards so that you don’t have to create multiple accounts.   In this way, you can use the site to plan something such as a home remodel and pin various pictures that show aspects of how you want your home remodeled or furniture that you plan to buy once it’s complete and another board to highlight your travel desires.

Instagram self describes itself as “a fast, beautiful and fun way to share your life with friends and family”.  One major thing to note about Instagram is that it’s an app only, it does not have a website to be accessed from the Internet.  In this way, it is best for capturing moments and sharing them on your existing social media profiles (Facebook, Twitter, etc.).  Instagram’s plus is that it enables you to edit your photos in a variety of ways, such as making them look as if they were taken in the 1950s or turning a color photo more vibrant with color or even changing it to black and white.  Unlike Pinterest, this is not a “collection” site and is more efficiently used for “in the moment” type sharing.

So, how can these sites be used for your business?  Get visual!  (In previous posts, we have discussed how people are visual and the data shows that visual mediums attract and hold people’s attention longer than text mediums.)  Start thinking in terms of pictures instead of words and use these pictures to “speak” for your brand.

When using Pinterest create various boards that aim to accomplish different goals.  An example would be creating a board for products, in which you post products that your company makes along with products from other businesses that relate to or enhance your products.  Other boards can be things you think your customers would enjoy; check out what’s popular from your site and pin about like-minded things.

Use Instagram to bring your audience “behind the scenes”.  People love to know what goes into creating things; they also love feeling “in the know”.  When filming a video, creating a product or conducting meetings about your latest product, capture some of those moments.  Take pictures of your warehouse where the secret sauce is made or some cool quirky things about your office (hopefully you have some). Edit the pictures for visual pleasure and post them around the social media globe.

You may think of these types of sharing as irrelevant, however, you’ll be amazed by the interest, the discussions created and the loyalty that is built from this.  Take some time this week to create your accounts on Pinterest and Instagram and start pinning and posting.  Be sure to add a Pin button on your site so people can pin directly from your content.  Let us know what changes you see as a result.

If you need assistance or desire to have your site enhanced with these tools, contact us.  We’ll be happy to help.