Daily Archives: February 7, 2012

How Pinterest can benefit email marketers

Posted on February 2, 2012 by Christopher Penn


How can marketers use the power of email and Pinterest together to drive retail sales?

I’m sure you have heard, joined or read about Pinterest at some point in the last few months. Although Pinterest has been around since March 2010 and is still an invite only social network, it recently has been gaining a tremendous amount of traction and popularity.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with Pinterest, here’s a quick primer. If you’re familiar with Delicious and other link saving services, Pinterest is a more visual version of those.

Pinning is easy with the Pin It button, a simple drag and drop browser extension. Pinterest is a great way to drive traffic back to your site. Each pinned photo includes a link back to the source site (you click once to see the pin page and again to see the source site). Most pins are photos, but you can pin videos too. If a video link is pinned, Pinterest embeds that video inside the pin. It’s a good way of spreading a tip when it has to be seen to be understood. Repins and likes share a common interest, making it easier to take the conversation to Twitter and Facebook to nurture the relationship.

Yummy Recipes

Pinterest offers a way for brands to build interaction with their audiences and to visually attract current and potential customers. Using the power of image, companies can create interest around products, display more in depth aspects of their business, and ultimately create more personal and visually pleasing social experiences for their audiences.

Once your business has created a Pinterest profile, get the ‘follow’ button for your website so that consumers are encouraged to pin your content and products if they choose. Like all social networks, it’s not simply enough to put the button there though. You need to give users a reason to use it. Interacting with users or giving them useful content that benefits them, beyond what you’re trying to market or sell, will go a long way towards making you more popular on the site. Use this opportunity to build your brand by linking and connecting to people who share the same style or by pinning images that inspire your company’s work. Showcase your style, what makes you different, what your brand stands for and use it as an opportunity to highlight your employees too. Putting a face to your brand is easily done with Pinterest.

Now let’s talk about how your company can utilize this platform to your advantage and drive retail sales.

Improve your click-throughs and spread the word about a new product.

Include your social media campaigns in your emails to build a relationship with your audience. Launch a daily pin theme or have a contest. At a minimum, have links to your Pinterest page in your social sharing section of your email.

Create a daily pin to promote your brand; these usually lead to repeat visitors.

Contests can engage your audience and also get them to your site, browsing your products and linking to them.

When pinning a product, add the product’s price in the description. Doing this will automatically place a banner over the image with the price listed and will also be shown in the gift section of the Pinterest site. This is a way of getting more of a direct response from marketing on Pinterest.

If you’re sending out a weekly newsletter or email, include something like, “See who pinned our products this week” or “Check out which of our products are getting the most attention (pinned) this week by other followers”, in your email linking them to a board you have created showing the results. This is a great way to listen to the customer and show them that you’re listening.

Pinterest’s audience is highly engaged and can easily contribute to your social media campaign going viral. Popular images (with links back to the original source) can get repined on hundreds of other user’s boards. The possibilities with Pinterest are endless. Get on board and start pinning!

Madison Murphy
Marketing Coordinator, WhatCounts

Social Media @ 2012 Super Bowl a Huge Success


The Super Bowl’s first-ever social media command center was an “enormous success,” according to Taulbee Jackson, who managed the host committee’s interactive communications hub.

A team of strategists, analysts and tech-savvy volunteers spent the past two weeks monitoring the digital fan conversation while working out of a 2,800-square-foot space in downtown Indianapolis just blocks from where Super Bowl XLVI was played Sunday. They chimed in as needed via TwitterFacebook and other platforms.

“The number of people we were able to reach was through the roof, more than anyone on the committee expected,” Jackson said in an interview the day after the game.

With some 150,000 people expected to flood downtown Indianapolis for Super Bowl festivities, the command center functioned as an innovative way to keep football fans informed and under control.

Jackson says it had a direct reach of about 49,000 people in the Indianapolis area over Facebook, Twitter,Foursquare and YouTube. Overall, the command center delivered some 1.8 million online impressions each day for the Indianapolis host committee.

Brad Carlson, the host committee’s vice president of marketing, told Mashable that he is “sure this trend will continue” as social media becomes increasingly widespread. The committee tapped Jackson’s digital marketing agency Raidious to run the operation, which Carlson said became a hot spot for tours by other event and civic organizations.

The team used advanced search tools and analytics to identify fans in need of help by indexing key words and phrases.

On Saturday afternoon, for example, a fan named Morgan Cooper tweeted to no one in particular that she was struggling to find somewhere to park. Less than half an hour later, someone at the command center located Cooper’s post and responded via the host committee’s official account with this message:

The link contained a map of more than 50 parking areas. That ability to directly respond to visitor concerns paid off — over the month preceding the game, fan sentiment about Indianapolis and the Super Bowl averaged a three-to-one positive ratio on social networks.

Excluding search engines, social media was the number-one referral source to the host committee’s homepage, ahead of the websites of the NFL and Indianapolis Star newspaper. The command center averaged more than 3,500 retweets and 2,500 Twitter “favorites” or Facebook “Likes” per day.

Jackson also said that, by monitoring the online fan conversation, his team was actually able to learn about several minor safety issues before even being notified by official organizations.

The two biggest operational surprises were an older and less nightlife-hungry audience than expected, according to Jackson. But the command center’s successes and surprises alike will be a boon to cities and organizations that look to set up similar operations.

“We’re really excited about what we were able to accomplish,” Jackson said. “A big part of our mission was to give this new idea a shot and establish a really good baseline that future committees and events can learn from.”

What other cities and events should establish social media command centers like this? Let us know in the comments.

Image courtesy of iStockphotoLUGO

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