Pinterest – Is it a Fad or Lead Generation Tool?

For me the jury is still out when it comes to Pinterest. I have started pinning on a couple of boards, but really don’t understand how this is going to directly drive customers to my business.

To be completely honest, I haven’t taken the time to study the platform and develop any strategies that coincide with my current marketing. This post was a step in the right direction, by reaching out to my Tribe for their feedback. I have to say I was initially surprised by the lack of response. I am left unsure of whether people aren’t really active Pinterest users, or haven’t determined whether or not there is any measurable ROI for their business. Of those who responded, the supporters won out. Be sure to click on the links to their boards to see how they are making use of this new social network.

To learn more on the subject (and share it with you), I scoured the internet and found some great posts and a ton of free resources. Below you will find -

  • Information on Pinterest 101 (for the virgins out there)
  • How to know whether Pinterest is right for your business
  • Tips to Effectively Marketing Using Pinterest
  • And lots of Free Pinterest Resources (even a free ebook from Hubspot)

There’s a lot to digest. But if Pinterest is of interest to you at all, take the time to do your research and try it on for size. As with any other social network, you’ve got to go where your target audience is hanging out. Maybe yours is on Pinterest. If you are an active user, please leave your two cents in the comments below. Enjoy!


1. Pinterest – A Pin Says A Thousand Words

When I first saw Pinterest, I thought WOW! What a great idea! I’d heard a few underground rumblings about it, & upon investigation saw that it really had great potential. Pinterest had gotten wise to the popularity of images of Facebook, & devised a platform where any user could collate different ‘Pin boards’ for various images of things that took their interest, which also capitalised on the hashtag-type feature of Twitter. Now, this new kid on the block may have seemed like just another channel vying for your attention, but stealing position No.3 in the social media stakes told us that Pinterest was a serious contender. As a Lead Generation Tool, or promotion channel it has huge potential, limited only by one’s inventiveness. Take note, or a ‘Pin’ – Pinterest is here to stay!

Find my Pinterest boards at http://pinterest.com/2excelcoaching/ and me on Twitter @Coach2Excel

Thanks to Grant Willcox of 2Excel Coaching

2. Keep Calm And Carry On Pinning!

I believe in Pinterest! In my opinion, Pinterest is yet another layer of exposure in the social media world! Apart from time each day to keep your boards current and spread some love with pins, Pinterest is an inexpensive way to subtly get the word out about your company. I use Pinterest to promote giveaways, share smart tips and my blog with images, plus spread general information that would interest my followers. I have seen an increase in website hits plus more Twitter and Facebook fans. It takes time to build your boards and your followers but I believe, it is well worth the effort!

Check out Teach My’s Boards on Pinterest http://pinterest.com/teachmy/ and @teachmy on Twitter!

Thanks to Christy Cook of Teach My

3. I LOVE Pinterest

I am new to Pinterest, and I already love it. You can pin both videos and images, so I have created a board for my Internet Strategy Tips. I am finding that they are repined, shared on Twitter, Favorited, and commented on more than the other social media platforms. Other things that I pin are business ideas, images that spark thought, images I may be able to use in future blog posts (with permission), and images that have personal interest. I have also read from social media gurus that Pinterest drives more traffic than Facebook and Twitter – the jury is still out on that for my website. So far it does have more Social Interaction. Check out my Internet Strategy board and give me your thoughts.

Find my Pinterest boards at http://pinterest.com/premiumwebsites/internet-strategy-tips/ and me on Twitter @AskDotty

Thanks to Dotty Scott of Premium Websites, LLC

4. There Is A Future For Pinterest

I see a lot of potential in Pinterest yet to be tapped in the U.S. for businesses. I say in the U.S. specifically because Pinterest in the U.K. is already being used very differently. While crafts, weddings, and food items are primarily targeted by users in the U.S., U.K. users are using it to pin favorite business articles and ideas. For businesses who want to drive traffic in the U.S. they need to come up with something creative to get people involved, such as a contest or a promotion. Have people take pictures with your item, or pin pictures from their favorite blog posts for a chance to win a prize. This will encourage more pins and give back to the people spreading the word about your biz.

You can find my board at http://pinterest.com/kimberly721 and me on Twitter at @SavvyCopywriter

Thanks to Kimberly Crossland of The Savvy Copywriter

5. Not For Everyone

Pinterest really doesn’t fit the criteria for many businesses. There is just too much clutter to sift through to find any kind of connections. Personally, we feel that it’s a waste of time. We could be spending that valuable time on marketing, public relations, or better sources of social networking. Every week there seems to be a new networking fad. This one will fade and fall like the rest of them. It’s tough to compete with the two social media monsters, Facebook and Twitter. Eventually, one or the other will buy out Pinterest, and shut it down for good.

Find me on Twitter @GovtAuctions

Thanks to Max Aronson of Government-Auctions-Guide

6. Lead Generation Tool

Study your analytics to see where your traffic is coming from. For my business, I get lots of hits from Pinterest each month! Definitely a keeper!

Find me on Pinterest and on Twitter @trainingonthego

Thanks to Zenee Miller of Training On The Go

7. My Work Is So Visual…

Pinterest really does work for me. I’ve used it to get the word out about my free events and free gifts in a variety of ways – by designing quotes to get pinned and re-pinned, and by making special graphics to share.

I’ve created a couple of special business boards where I share business-related stuff. I also keep a few “extracurricular” boards as well. Plus, I’ve pinned things from many other sources so I don’t look too biased.

I do think that one of the reasons it works for me is because what I do is visual (graphic and brand design) and my clients tend to be very visual as well. You can find my boards at http://pinterest.com/erinferree/ and follow me @erinferree on Twitter.

Thanks to Erin Ferree of BrandStyle Design

8. Build Your Vision Board On Pinterest

I love the idea of a vision board and I started creating several on Pinterest. I use the site for fun. I do get referrals from the site, but it’s way down on the list and doesn’t compare to Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. I recommend that you spend a week playing around on Pinterest. Set aside 20 minutes a day and don’t be surprised if that stretches to an hour. It’s fun. What does your dream office look like? What are your favorite shoes and handbags? What outfits will you where to networking events? For me, Pinterest is another way for me to promote my business, promote dog rescue, and promote my brand.

You can find my boards on Pinterest at http://pinterest.com/TheFurMom/ and me on Twitter @TheFurMom

Thanks to Kimberly Gauthier of Keep the Tail Wagging

9. Potent Connector

People respond to different stimuli. For potential clients that are visually oriented, Pinterest can attract them in a unique way. Images become more powerful than words. They entice you with quick glances and if interesting and appropriate, invite you in for further examination.

Businesses are using Pinterest in many ways. I have themed boards that relate to organizing, life and other interests. I only pin beautiful images. Clever or interesting isn’t enough, it also has to be well composed and eye-catching to be board-worthy.

Since using Pinterest, I’ve generated more leads for business, sold more books, increased followers for all social media venues, increased blog interaction, & increased newsletter sign-ups. Activity all around has increased. It’s well worth the experimentation.

Find my boards on Pinterest at http://pinterest.com/ohsoorganized/ and me on Twitter @LindaSamuels

Thanks to Linda Samuels of Oh, So Organized!


Pinterst 101

For the Pinterest virgin, here are some basic guides to the ins and outs of how to use Pinterest.

Everything You Need to Know About Pinterest
If you are still a bit in the dark about Pinterest, this post will get you started.

Pinterest: A Beginner’s Guide to the Hot New Social Network
Great basics from Mashable on the what, where, and how of Pinterest.

How to Decide If It’s a Good Fit for You

5 Ways to Tell if Pinterest is Right for Your Business
No one needs to waste precious time on something that is going to be a complete time suck and not deliver results. The Social Media Examiner gets you to ask some hard questions and do a bit of strategic thinking before jumping on the Pinterest wagon.

Pinterest for Communications
Great guidance from New York Women in Communications members – Love the quote, that Pinterest “should fall in line with your existing communication strategy and complement it.”

Why You Shouldn’t Market on Pinterest
For an opposing view, check out this post from Adam Kreitman and cross check your reasons for wanted to become a pinning fool. Is it another bright shiny object, or a legitimate fit for your current marketing plan?

Google+ vs. Pinterest: Where Should You Market Your Business
If it is a question of choosing one or the other when investing your time, hopefully this side-by-side comparison in a free ebook from Hubspot will help you make an informed decision.

Why Brands That Market to Women Should be on Pinterest
Some great statistics and a case study on the power of Pinterest for women-targeted brands.

Why You Should Be Using Pinterest to Pick Up Women
Research is showing that Pinterest is of particular appeal to women groups. So if your target customers falls within the typical Pinterest demographics then maybe you should take the next step to determine how it might be an effective mechanism to reach more of your audience. Find out more in this post from Forbes.

Tips for Effectively Marketing with Pinterest

56 Ways to Market Your Business on Pinterest
This post comes from Copyblogger and offers guidance to the Beginner, Intermediate and Black Belt pinners. There are some really creative strategies in this post that piqued my interest.

6 Tips for Branding with Pinterest
To get the most out of your time on Pinterest, be sure to follow the basic guidelines provided in this post from Social Media Today to boost your brand.

Using Pinterest for Small Business Success
After answering yes to the question, “Does your business lend itself to visual representation?” you can keep reading for 5 tips to maximize your use of Pinterest for your small business.

What You Should and Shouldn’t Post on Pinterest
If you just need a laugh and some common sense after all the seriousness above, you will enjoy this post on the do’s and don’t when it comes to Pinterest.

How to Add a Pinterest Tab to Your Facebook Page
From social media expert, Karen Moran, a step-by-step guide to start cross pollinating between your social networks.

Going Viral on Pinterest: Huge Traffic and Big Opportunities
A Slideshare presentation with some helpful tips.

64 Pinterest Marketing Tips and Tactics – Infographic
Sometimes you just need an infographic to make sense of something, so here you go.

More Free Resources

How to Use Pinterest for Business – Free eBook from Hubspot
Hubspot is a regular source for focused free ebooks on marketing topics. Be sure to sign up to get your hands on this 43-page gem to walk you through their best tactics for using Pinterest for Business.

30 Resources, Tips and Tricks for Marketing Your Business on Pinterest
Great list of resources from Jeff Bullas. Dig a bit deeper to find even more great posts on Pinterest.

17 Free Resources and 59 Tips for How to Use Pinterest for Your Business

The Ultimate Pinterest Marketing Resource Guide (89 Helpful Resources)

103 Resources for Becoming a Pinterest Expert
And if you still haven’t gotten enough, this is a pretty long list of resources to teach you even more — from the inception of Pinterest, statistics, how-to’s, lessons learned, marketing and more!

Hope you find all of that helpful as you continue to determine if Pinterest is right for you!

Thanks so much again to all our wonderful contributors for sharing your thoughts and experiences on Pinterest! We hope to hear from you again. And to all our readers, if you have an innovative idea to share, we hope you will leave it in the comments below.

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