Pinterest is a virtual pinboard that lets you organize and share interesting web content. Popular with consumers, Pinterest was recently cited as the fourth largest website traffic driver worldwide, and the fastest-growing social media site (23 million users as of July 2012). The emphasis on images and ease of use are two reasons for its rapid growth. Some of the most popular image categories on Pinterest have a lifestyle focus: home décor, arts & crafts, and fashion. Many marketers are wondering if, and how, to get involved. The answer? It depends. Here is a quick check list to determine if Pinterest is right for your winery.
- Are you popular with the ladies? Almost 80% of Pinterest users are females between the ages of 25 and 44; it is the only major U.S. social network to skew so disproportionately female. Before jumping in to Pinterest, make sure your brand makes sense for this audience.
- Start with your website. Can the images from your website and products in your online store be easily “pinned” or posted to the Pinterest site? Test this by entering URL links from your website to the “Add a Pin” page. If your site is optimized for sharing, you will be able to select your best images to share on Pinterest. Pinned images that link directly to your website ultimately drive traffic. Websites built with Flash are not optimized for sharing.
- Audit your winery’s visual assets. High quality images are the most engaging posts on Pinterest. Your photos should catch people’s eye and invite them to explore further and ultimately share (“re-pin”) your content. Do you have an iconic photo from the tasting room that links to information on the winery experiences, photos and recipes of gourmet meals prepared by your chef, or educational tips with photos on how to taste wine? In this case, casual social media-quality photos won’t work; you want to share your highest-quality images.
- Can you keep it up? In order to be successful on Pinterest you need a steady stream of quality images and text. You will want to stay active and pin daily. Do you already run a blog that is updated regularly? This is a great source of content that can be easily pinned and drive traffic to your blog. Also, interact with other Pinterest users by searching and repinning photos they share of your winery.
If you can commit time and effort to engage your followers, your brand has the potential to reach a new, very social audience. While it may seem overwhelming to take on yet another social network, if armed with the right strategy, Pinterest can be well worth the effort.
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