Pinterest is a great way of doing exactly that. Essentially, it's a pin-boarding site where members share their favorite images and photos, grouped around themes. It's also second only to Facebook for driving referral traffic to websites. It's a powerful social media tool and there's no reason why B2B businesses and brands can't grab a slice of the action.
1. Something for everyone
Behind every B2B business or brand is often a large group of decision makers. They're deciding which direction to take their company, when to expand, where to expand and so on. While all aiming for the same end goal, each individual will have different requirements and beliefs.
Pinterest is uniquely placed to grab the attention of a variety of people. By creating different boards, you can reach out to everyone, from a designer to a buyer. GE has a fantastic page; boards such as the 'Art of Innovation' show its quirky side, while 'From the Factory Floor' shows technical information.
2. Build relationships
Personal relationships keep B2B businesses and brands ticking. Suppliers need to forge bonds with customers based on trust. So why not start the process of building new relationships on Pinterest? It's really easy to share images from complimentary businesses; and the effect is two-pronged. Not only can their content enhance your site, but you'll be giving them a welcome boost at the same time...and hopefully they might return the favor. Pinterest is all about interaction so get re-pinning, sharing and commenting.
3. Prove your credentials
Businesses and brands which are selling to other businesses need to be seen to be reliable. When high-street consumers make a big purchase, such a television, they want to be sure they're making the right decision. If the television fails, they won't buy that brand again. If a B2B deal fails, it could seriously jeopardize a company's reputation amongst its peers. Use your loyal fans to provide evidence of your success. Intel created a board entitled 'Fan Love', giving a voice to its supporters. Boards such as 'Our customers', 'Our clients' or 'Our community' can really reinforce reputation.
4. Get technical
Sometimes consumers can be easily swayed. The feel of a dress or the color of a car can have a big influence on purchases. B2B customers are savvier. They're less likely to have their head turned by aesthetics; they want to know a product or service works. Pinterest can be a place to offer specific facts and technical information about your product. That's because it's not just for photographs, it's useful for posting videos which many companies use to give short tutorials or how-to-style guidance. Make sure these are clear, concise and professional and you'll stand a good chance of appealing to decision makers.
5. Encourage competition
Why not lighten the mood by running a contest? They're a great way to reach out to your market. The golden rules are simple. Make contests easy to enter, visually attractive, and ensure the prize is correctly targeted at your audience. Emailvision, a marketing company which delivers and automates email marketing, created a 'Pin Your Inbox' contest asking email marketers to pin their favorite email campaign. The prize was an email creative designed by the Emailvision studio. It's worth taking a look at Pinterest's terms and conditions regarding contests, just to make sure you are working within the guidelines. Plus they offer some good dos and don'ts which could help to shape your contest.
6. Let your personality shine
Great businesses are built around great people. Pinterest can show the faces behind your company and let personalities shine through. Deloitte, the largest professional services network in the world, has a dedicated '[email protected]' board which shows employees taking part in golf days, charity events and even cooking contests. It spices up what would otherwise be a fairly corporate page and gives some human interest. Try creating boards such as 'Behind the scenes' or 'Our sponsored event' or even 'Our favorite places'!
Pinterest is light-hearted and fun - although it is being taken increasingly seriously for its ability to drive referral traffic and connect with new audiences. Videos, infographics, graphics, photographs, and even links to reports or articles can all be pinned to Pinterest. Remember that images taken directly from your website will link back there, and that by installing the Pinterest button on your website you can encourage others to share links too. So the more you share, the more your referrals will grow!
Good luck - and happy pinning!
Originally posted on RingCentral