For service providers – to pin or not to pin?

Are you a service provider wondering whether Pinterest is for you? This article will hopefully help!

I’m playing around with the idea of using Pinterest for business at the moment. I’m not 100% committed to the idea at this stage, but am open to possibilities as ever!

I’ve used pinterest personally for about two years but I have not so far used it much to help me in business other than a bit of research here and there.

If like me you are a service provider you might be unsure as to how Pinterest could be useful for you. You can see how it is great for products, retail business etc, those who are selling ‘stuff’ basically. But when you are selling knowledge, talent and expertise, how can this platform work? Isn’t it all just nacho dipping sauce and homestyling? Well, no!

In my research I’ve come across some interesting uses by B2B and service companies/ business people and I thought I’d share them here with you. It’s not exhaustive, I’ve literally dipped my toe in but I think you’ll agree that some of these are great ways to use Pinterest to promote your business.

(By the way this isn’t a ‘how to use pinterest post’ though I may do one of these later!)

Reading List

If you read books around your subject – or even write them! You could set up a board of books you have read. Written/ would recommend. This could be seen as a useful resource to your clients and prospects. It also gives a positive impression of you as someone committed to improving your own knowledge and expertise.

Your articles/ blog

Common sense really but so long as the articles or blog that you post on your website have an image, you can create a Pinterest board for them. You could have one board for all of your articles or you could split them into more niche boards. So I could have just one board called marketing or several called content marketing, how to blog, twitter for business, creative copywriting… you get the picture.

Not only does this make your articles easy to find it will encourage visits to your website which will help with your search engine rankings and could convert to a contact from that person.

Other articles/ information

Again, a place to save useful information, articles, infographics and images related to your area of business. The boards will be a useful resource for others and the more you pin to them the more your followers will be drawn back to your boards. This would also be good for you as the boards would serve as a library of useful info.

Workshops/ seminars/ training

If you run workshops, seminars or training sessions as part of your business, Pinterest can help you to curate resources related to that. This could be links to worksheets, articles, videos etc that you want them to see either before or after the event.

Fun/ cool/ Interesting stuff

People do business with people. So in the way that you might mix up your business content on twitter and facebook with more social content, you can do so with Pinterest. So there’s nothing wrong with still having a recipe board or a motivational quotes board on your business Pinterest profile. This is just you expressing your personality and it gives people a way of connecting with who you are in a wider sense, feeling that they have something in common with you etc.

Client liaison/ creative brainstorming

This is especially good if your service is visual, like graphic design, website design, interiors, kitchen design etc. By using secret boards (I know, how exciting!) you can set up a board that you can both pin to and share images and info on a project. We have done this with a couple of clients on branding projects and also a creative retail client who is a real pinner shared her boards with us when we were rebranding her company and developing a new e-commerce website. This proved to be a great way of us understanding what styles she liked and how we could use them to lead the brand.

 

So what do you think? I’d love to know if/ how you are using Pinterest, especially if you are a service business.

As with all social media you need to assess what value you feel you might be able to get from it, whether you have the time to devote to it and, importantly, if you feel your audience and client base are also using Pinterest.

And of course if you do decide to use Pinterest for your business, make sure people know you are. Add the link to your website, email signature strip and the like and use your other social media pages to let people know that they can find you there too.

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All Comments (1)

  • Some interesting ideas there Sarah, Pinterest has rapidly become my primary visual reference tool, naturally progressing into a collaborative client liaison / brainstorming medium. It works really well.
    I’ve also wondered for some time how suitable the platform would be as an alternative to a ‘standard’ website; food for thought.