The latest sensation on the social media scene is Pinterest, a self-proclaimed “online pinboard” where you can “organize and share things you love.” But, if you ask me, it is so much more than that! If you are strictly looking at the numbers, in May 2011 Pinterest saw 50,000 unique visitors. Fast-forward to February 2012 and Pinterest is seeing 11,000,000 unique visitors, making it the fastest growing website EVER. Pinterest has more referral traffic than YouTube, Google+, and LinkedIn combined.
You may be wondering why is Pinterest valuable to you as a Realtor? Pinterest is your opportunity to truly utilize the age-old wisdom of “a picture is worth a thousand words.” Your Pinterest profile can show a potential lead more about who you are than your Facebook profile can. You should use your Pinterest boards to highlight your personal interests and those things that you are passionate about. Pinterest is not the place to post all of your listings; it is where you need to highlight what your brand represents.
So how do you start? Much like Facebook, it is best to first start with a personal profile before you move on to a business profile. When creating your personal profile keep your business in mind, but show who you are. Are you passionate about your market? During their webinar, InmanNext offered a few examples of individuals and businesses really taking advantage of Pinterest. Raj Qsar is a Realtor in Orange County, who is obviously very passionate about his market. Through his profile you can also see that Raj is interested in other things…like hamburgers! His profile is a great example of incorporating personal interests with business. He has included a board he created to introduce his team members and by utilizing the comments section he is able provide a brief bio of each member of his team, while the gorgeous photos backlink to his website. Remember to stick to the ratio of 80% personal and 20% business. Hard work only takes you so far. Gaining clients is not just about working hard; for them the most important aspect of choosing a Realtor is the feeling that they have about you and your brand.
Once you have established your personal Pinterest profile (say that 3 times fast!), your next step will be to create your business profile. The InmanNext team offered Style House Realty as an example of what to do with a business profile. Again, the key is to make it personal – even though it's about your business. Style House Realty does a great job of showcasing their brand while providing much more than just listings to their followers; they are showing what their brand represents.
The great news is, you have several helpful tools available to you to make your pinning uncomplicated and streamlined, the first of which is the pinmarklet which you can easily add to your bookmark bar in Chrome or Firefox. Adding the “Pin It” button will allow you to easily pin images (and subsequently create backlinking) from any website you visit. As you might imagine, the Pin It button will not only be useful to you, but also your blog readers. It is critical to use unique images in order to create pinnable material for your readers. Another useful tool provided by Pinterest is the ability to see who is backlinking to your site. You need only visit pinterest.com/source/_________ (insert company website domain) to see who is linking to your site.
So, let's cover the “Do's and Don'ts of Pinterest”:
Use common sense!
Pin blog posts
Pin things you're passionate about
80% personal / 20% business
Be social! Comment, Like, Repin
Pin only your listings
Pin only business items
Broadcast every pin on Facebook (Pinterest is fully integrated with Timeline –
use this tool wisely)
Be sure to check out InmanNext's webinar, and happy pinning!