Contributed by: David Hutnik, Social Media Director at InterCoastal Net Designs
Pinterest is buzzing through everyone's feed on a weekly basis it seems, but have you really taken the time to see how YOUR business can leverage this network?
First, let’s set the tone for where Pinterest stacks up to the other social media sites.
- 70 Million Users
- 60% Female
- 20% of all US women
#1: Pinterest added a great new feature November 2013 called "Place Pins."
This allows you to pinpoint key places around the town with a map shown in the background. You can create this for local restaurants, beach access and other highlights of your town to help your vacationers enjoy a great trip. You can embed these into your website as well to keep visitors on-site, allowing you to be a resource to others.
How To Create a "Place Pins" Board
First, let me walk you through the process of setting this up yourself. It's very simple if you already have a Pinterest account; just go to the upper right corner where your name is and click on the "+" sign. This will display a drop-down allowing you to "Create a Board."
Next you will need to name your board and give it a description. Keep SEO-friendly keywords in mind. Also, it's very important that you select "Add a Map"; this is what makes it a new Places Pinboard.
Now that you've created your board, add your first place. I recommend that you add your place of business last (if it fits into your new board category). By adding your business last, it will ensure that your business comes up at the top on the list when viewing your board.
Be sure to add a lot of places to your pinboard! Just select the "Add a Place" button to keep adding more.
This is a great new feature for a vacation rental company to use. You can showcase all of the local hotspots and point out some of the places only locals know about. For example, that beach access where your car WON'T get towed and it's not as crowded. You know that local burger joint that has incredible food but most tourists don't know about it? What about the best place to rent equipment from? You are the local expert concierge and this is your opportunity to share with other Pinterest users!
#2: Pin-It Buttons
You can add a button to your blogs or other content on your site that makes it easy for users to "Pin" from your website. You can also add a "hover button" so that as visitors on your website hover their mouse over a photo, the "Pin-it" button appears and they will be able to pin easily. This "hover button" is nice because it is easy to add (depending on how your website is programmed and what access you have) and it doesn't interfere with the rest of your website design. Learn more:
#3: Product Pins (Add Pricing and Description to your Vacation Rentals)
This requires a web developer to help you, but adding some code to your website can allow Pinterest to pull pricing, description, availability, location and property name with your vacation rentals pictures when they are pinned: http://developers.pinterest.com/rich_pins/#oembedType
#4: Promoted Pins
These are brand new and not available for everyone at this time. You can apply for this feature (http://business.pinterest.com/promoting-pins/) but it depends on your budget.
As Pinterest describes, they are "Tasteful, Transparent and Relevant," so you can anticipate them not being annoying to users and hopefully targeted to specific interests. For VRMs, this means that you can use Pinterest to target your rentals to users who pin vacation ideas in target regions and fall into the demographics you'd like to reach. Keep an eye on this feature as it continues to be developed in 2014.