Let’s face it: business can be tough, especially when you’re selling to other businesses. So having a bit of fun, and letting your personality shine through, should be an important part of what you do.
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 brands can’t grab a slice of the action. Below are six easy tips that any business can use to start “pinning” today:
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 and 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.
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 provide B2B customer service and 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. For example, RingCentral offers great video tutorials on their ‘Helpful Videos‘ board which shows users everything from new features to customer testimonials, and more.
Businesses and brands which are selling to other businesses need to be seen to be reliable. When consumers make a big purchase, such as buying a new appliance, they want to be sure they’re making the right decision. If that appliance fails, they won’t buy from that brand again.
However, 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 their supporters. Boards such as ‘Our Customers’, ‘Our Clients’, ‘Our Community’, etc. can really reinforce reputation, and are a great way for customers to feel the love back from brands they care about.
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. Here are four easy musts for any business considering running a Pinterest contest, giveaway, or promotion of their own.
For more information on how to run a business Pinterest contest checkout these smart tips. [Please note, be sure to take 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 do’s and don’ts which could help to shape your contest.]
5) Let your personality shine.
Great businesses are built around great people. Pinterest can show the faces behind your company and let personalities shine through. HubSpot, has multiple boards on their Pinterest page which show different aspects of all the people who are part of the HubSpot culture. They are able to spice up what would otherwise be a fairly typical corporate page and gives some human interest. Boards such as ‘Behind the Scenes @ HubSpot’, ‘HubSpotters in the Wild’, etc. are a great way of showing off the cool things people in your office do everyday!
Try creating boards such as ‘Behind the Scenes’, ‘Our Sponsored Event’, ‘Around the Office’, or even ‘Our Favorite Places’ are a great way to let your company’s culture and values come through in a fun visual way, plus it allows followers to feel a more personal connection with the people behind the brand.
6) Build relationships.
Personal relationships keep B2Bs 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 today.
Pinterest is lighthearted and fun – although it is being taken more 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. Get more information on Pinterest for Business, and join as a brand today!
Good luck – and happy pinning!
Originally published Aug 13, 2014, updated Aug 12, 2020