Pinterest has been a hot topic lately, and with social media outlets skyrocketing, small businesses owners have begun looking into utilizing the Pinterest platform to increase profitability and drive traffic back to their sites. These same tactics can be employed by small business owners looking to sell their businesses, though there are a few things to think through before diving in completely.
What Is Pinterest?
One of the fastest growing social media websites, Pinterest is essentially a virtual corkboard that you can “pin” your interests on. People can view your board and see what types of interests you have pinned, and vice/versa. A quick scan will show you that most of the users are women, and that fashion, jewelry, makeup, hairstyles, workout tips, inspirational quotes, and home décor are some of the most frequently repinned items. While they are not as prominent, pins dealing with cars, engines, science, and nature are out there as well, providing a balance to the traditionally female-centric interests, and offering something more for males to pin and repin. Essentially, if one were to replace all of the text on Twitter’s website with pictures, you would have Pinterest.
The brief description above doesn’t do Pinterest justice, as the things that people pin are pictures, videos, or infographics that are often intense, beautiful, or visually stunning, and that link back to an original website—which is exactly where businesses come in. It has been shown that Pinterest has been driving loads of traffic back to small business websites, causing a lot of owners and operators to invest in the social media platform. Not only that, but a recent study by Bizrate Insights shows that 70% of consumers use Pinterest to get inspiration on products to purchase, and that 69% of consumers found an item that they either purchased or wanted to purchase.
Selling Services Instead of Products
If a company doesn’t sell anything on Pinterest, they can still generate traffic by pinning and repinning things that are in line with their company philosophies or services. A well-executed campaign can drive plenty of traffic back to a website when the right pins are posted, and, while not likely, it is possible for a particularly creative or inspiring pin to go viral.
Using It to Sell Your Small Business
In terms of selling a small business, Pinterest can be wielded as an effective weapon. If you are just putting your business on the market, or are about to, there is nothing like a spike in consumer interest to make the potential buyers of your business salivate. This platform plays well with many other social media platforms as well, and if you are generating traffic and awareness by pinning on Pinterest, those pins will show up on Facebook and Twitter as well if you want them to. With the rate that Pinterest is growing and with how easy it is to pin on the site, many would agree that it is a “worth-it” investment.
The problem that one might find with Pinterest is that it is still very small, at least in comparison to the other social media monoliths like Facebook and Twitter. Others are disenchanted by the extremely high number of women using the site, especially when selling products like software or lawnmowers, for example (though Mr. Rooter, a national plumbing company, has very effectively executed Pinterest campaigns). A final consideration is that the time invested in marketing through Pinterest is not profitable enough and will end up costing more than it is worth. Nobody wants to buy a business that is investing poorly and losing money.
It Can’t Hurt
Overall, the keyword here is moderation. Even if your marketing demographic doesn’t speak to women, you can still find niche demographics on Pinterest. Also, you don’t have to put in any more than 20 minutes per day for your Pinterest marketing to be effective. If you aren’t spending more time than it is worth on Pinterest, it really can’t harm your business. So sign up, log in, and start pinning!
Do you have any experiences with Pinterest and your business? What are your thoughts? Let us know!