A friend and I were chatting the other day about how social media has changed the way we interact with people – both prospects and clients.
I think most of us would agree that nowadays, you ignore social media at your peril. Even offline businesses have a social media presence of some sort. I was surprised to see that our very lovely, local Deli (for anyone interested, that’s El’s Kitchen, Ladywell, www.elskitchen.co.uk) is using Twitter to advertise for a cook! Brilliant.
So, back to friend and I. We got on to the subject of Pinterest, just how much we love using it and how we reckon we’re probably under-utilising an opportunity to win new projects and/or clients.
One fascinating fact about Pinterest is the amount of time people spend on the site. Instead of just logging on to check messages as one can do with Twitter/Facebook, Pinterest’s visual appeal is such that apparently, Pinterest users spend an average of 90 minutes on the site!
I started looking around the Pinterest community, and found some very useful tips on how to get your name ‘out there’ to generate more work. So here they are, with a couple of my own.
- Pin images to reflect your career. I’ve seen quite a few “living resumes”. They can be as quirky or as serious as you like. If you are an artist, graphic designer, photographer, such like, this has got to be an excellent way to showcase your portfolio at the same time.
- Journalists frequently use Pinterest to post images of exclusives before they are published. This could work well if you have a new promotional item, or if you are introducing a new service.
- Infographics are becoming increasingly popular. So if you are a graphic designer, why not create some smart looking Infographics so that people can contact you for a bespoke one.
- One that I have used myself is why not show your clients how to get up and running on Pinterest (probably best if you get yourself up and running first!) Explain to them that it’s a free means of them gaining exposure for their business. Surely a great way for you to show your client what you can do for them and a reason for them to refer you to others!
- Use Pinterest to provide pinned ‘testimonials’. If you are a photographer, you could ask your client to pin their favourite photograph you took of them.
- Into cake/confectionery making or crafts? In fact anything that you make or sell? Once you or someone else can take a picture of it, set yourself up on Pinterest and then have your clients/customers pin their favourite. You’ll see lots of “favourite recipe” boards on Pinterest, so this is an idea which works particularly well
Are there any others that you personally use?
And if you would like some more inspiration, why not download my free e-book Pinterest for your small business.
Have fun pinning.
Edited: Since writing this article, I have been reminded of a very important issue of copyright (thanks, @katielevett, designer and maker of vintage inspired textile art and gifts). You should only pin content that you own or have a license to use. Care should be taken therefore, to ensure the owner is properly credited. In essence, if it’s just a pretty picture without a link back to a post or blog, then you should steer well clear of it. My ebook gives detailed instructions on how to do this. If you are concerned about pinning your own work to Pinterest, for example if you are a photographer, artist, what you could do is watermark your images with a clear copyright sign plus your website address.
The Pinterest copyright debate is a hot potato and there are many arguments for and against using it to showcase your own work.
Here are some other articles on other blogs, which I think address the point very well and give both sides to the argument.
1. Mashable: “Pinterest copyright, legal issues: http://mashable.com/2012/03/21/pinterest-copyright-legal-issues/
2. Amy Inn Andrews: “Pinterest and Copyright”: http://bloggingwithamy.com/pinterest-legal/
3. Photoshelter Blog: “Pinterest is still not for photographers”: http://blog.photoshelter.com/2012/02/pinterest-is-still-not-for-photographers-round-2/