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Pinterest Quick Guide to Promoted & Buyable Pins

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What are the differences between promoted pins and new buyable pins on Pinterest? Let’s discuss.

Ever since Pinterest became the go-to online tool for people who wanted to find, save and categorize items by interest, businesses have been looking for ways to monetize their Pinterest activities.

In just under two years, the visually driven social media network has introduced two programs to address these needs: Promoted Pins and the new Buyable Pins.

So how do you decide if one or both of these pin products are the right fit to help you build brand awareness or drive revenue?

You can start with our short review of these pin types to gain a better understanding:

Buyable Pins vs Promoted Pins on Pinterest

Promoted Pins

Promoted Pins are a form of paid advertising. They are native advertisements, so they show up in your Pinterest feed just like any other pin. Promoted Pins can be targeted at specific users in various demographic, geographic, and other behavior- and interest-based groups. For this reason, they tend to perform better than organic pins, which are displayed to a more general audience. U.S.-based business accounts can enroll in Promoted Pins now or join the waitlist.

Buyable Pins

Buyable Pins are a brand-new feature for Pinterest users. So new, in fact, that they are just rolling out to iPhone and iPad users (desktop forthcoming). Buyable Pins will make it possible to purchase a product directly from the pin, without leaving the Pinterest app. If a product is available for purchase, it will display a Blue “Buy it” button in the upper right corner.

Unlike Promoted Pins, the new Buyable Pins are free to use, and they work together with Rich Pins. For now, Buyable Pins will play nicely with Shopify accounts and Demandware accounts, but most retailers will be asked to join the waitlist while the program rolls out to more users and devices.

What other questions do you have about Promoted or Buyable Pins?

5 Brands Rocking on Pinterest

It’s not an easy balance to pin, comment and start new boards, all while keeping your audience entertained and engaged. Here are a few companies using Pinterest well and why. Take note and see if any of their strategies can be repurposed for your business.

Redress Raleigh:

Redress Raleigh is a startup that promotes sustainability among designers, companies and customers in the fashion world. The company seeks to convince people, through consulting, to make eco-conscious apparel choices, including those in materials to upkeep. Each year, the company produces a show that highlights the latest creative eco-fashion.

Why they rock:


Web Seminar Recap: Social Media for Small Businesses

You constantly hear how important a strong online presence is to any type of business, including small, localized businesses. But these smaller businesses have neither the budget nor manpower of larger companies such as Starbucks and Wal-Mart. Nevertheless, with a little research and proper preparation, any small business can garner successful online engagement.

On June 21st Social Media Director for Shelten Media, LLC, Joseph Havey, presented the free web seminar, “Social Media for Small Businesses.” In this one-hour presentation Joseph covered the six most popular social media channels and provided tips on how a small business can use each channel effectively. From Facebook to WordPress, subtle nuances exist between platforms, and participants learned how to tailor content to each online location. (more…)

What Does the Future Hold for Social Media?

In the past year, there were quite a few “bigs” for social media. Facebook bought Instagram and surpassed its 1 billion user mark. LinkedIn surpassed its 200 million mark. Twitter was valued at $10 billion, and Google+ became the second largest social network, in terms of engaged users.

So when the study came out that said 34 percent of Facebook users planned to spend less time on the site because they were “bored,” social media marketers were somewhat surprised.

That’s not the only struggle social media had in the past year. Twitter, after the Boston Marathon madness, considered a content editor to ensure that the information on Twitter stayed accurate. Instagram went through a tough transition into Facebook’s hands, with public backlash about both the change in terms of service and the addition of a web-based platform.

The question is:  What does the future hold for social media? Will it stick around, and if so, what will it look like? That’s quite a tricky question to answer because of how quickly the online landscape changes (Could anyone honestly have predicted Snapchat? Or Pinterest? Or any other new, highly successful network?), but this is my best guess. (more…)

Top 2012 Social Media Updates

2012 was a year of constant updates from all the social networks, several which have major impacts on how we advertise. As a marketer, it’s important for to continue to keep up-to-date with all of the major changes going on, as well as use the updates to help us sell more product, increase brand awareness, and ultimately reach our established goals. We’ve attempted to capture six of the hardest hitting, revenue impacting updates across many of the social networks this year. As a digital marketer, it’s imperative to remain on your toes and as agile as possible within these rapid changing technological times.

1. Mobile Only Facebook Ads

For the first time, marketers can pay for advertising directly on the Facebook Mobile App instead of just the desktop alone. These come in the form of sponsored stories, and we have included a screenshot to show you exactly what to look for. Another nice feature here is the social proof element, or number of people that are using this. This new type of advertising also allows us to compare which platform is more effective as far as conversions, something that marketers were not able to do in the past. Previously the same ad was generated to users on a desktop or mobile device, without clear delineation on performance for each one. (more…)

Five Things You Should Expect When You Outsource Your Social Media

My consulting firm recently pitched our services to an organization that wanted to replace their current social media marketers.  Unfortunately, the horror story they conveyed was one we hear often, so I decided to write a blog about the five things you should expect when you outsource your social media.

1)      Always have access to your accounts

2)      Have a designated person creating your content that understands your brand culture

3)      All posts should be professional and positive

4)      Less is not more when it comes to social media

5)      Web analytics should be evaluated on a weekly/monthly basis

Always have access to your accounts. (more…)

What Social Media Managers Really Do and Why They’re Necessary

When approaching social media, more and more companies are realizing they need someone, if not multiple people, to manage their presence full time. With the results, successes and detriments we have seen in the past few years on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest and more, it’s no wonder it’s a full-time job. A couple weeks ago at the Internet Summit in Raleigh, NC, I had someone ask me:  “Well, what would a social media or community manager do for my company? Why do I even need a position like that?”

Personally, I’m biased because I see success stories every day – sales, new followers, engagement, conversations – and I constantly interact with social media and online marketing professionals. But I wanted to show some other people that just like any business person, social media professionals have goals and benchmarks they set and achieve. I asked a friend, Rebecca Harrelson, to write a guest post about her experience with two major brands she has worked for, Beachbody and the NBA, and their evolution in social media.

When obtaining my master’s degree in sports business, marketing, and media at New York University, social media had not taken off to the degree it has now.  It wasn’t even discussed as a possible outlet for customer service, connection, or any other use for marketing sports teams or business entities.  However, upon graduation I worked for the National Basketball Association (NBA) and about a year later, social media was all the rage.  As a member of the Global Merchandising Group (GMG), who oversaw both the brick and mortar NBA Store on 5th Avenue in New York as well as, we needed to connect to our customers and tell of special promotions, sales, launches and other product-based information.  The only way our customers knew of these product-based call outs was if they visited our website randomly, or searched through layers and layers of information for the brick and mortar store. Neither of these allowed us to connect to our customers the way we felt we should. (more…)

Web Seminar Recap – What’s New: November Social Media Updates

The social media landscape changes with a blink of an eye. Just when we think Twitter and Facebook are the social media networks that we need to focus on, networks like Google Plus and Pinterest pop up and grab everyone’s attention. On Wednesday, November 7, 2012 Jon Parks presented the free web seminar “What’s New Web Seminar Series: November Social Media Updates.” This web seminar covered all of the latest trends and updates in social media.

We broke down the strengths and strategies of specific networks like Facebook and Twitter and how recent updates can affect your overall marketing strategies and implementations. We talked about the new networks coming out, the ones to watch for and the ones to be careful of.

Some specific areas that we covered include:
• The latest updates to Facebook & Twitter
• What’s new with Google Plus
• How Pinterest can be part of your marketing arsenal
• The latest changes in YouTube and how it affects your search marketing plans
• And more…

Listen to a recording of this web seminar in its entirety by clicking View Event Recordings (at the top right).

Building Your Brand on Pinterest

What started off as another social photo sharing site has quickly turned into the number one social site for generating online retail sales. According to the Social Shopping 2012 Survey, “59% of Pinterest users have purchased an item they saw on the site,” while only 33% of Facebook users make that same claim. So how does a business harness this potential and convert it to sales?

Your profile
Pinterest doesn’t differentiate between personal and professional profiles, so this is your chance to “humanize” your brand. Use a headshot rather than a logo as your avatar and drop the stuffy company mission statement. Instead, in the “about” section of your profile, use laymen terms to discuss what makes your company different from your competitors.

Your boards
First and foremost, Pinterest is a SOCIAL media site and therefor e you must be social. Follow those that follow you. This goodwill goes a long way.  It is also important to note that your boards are the first thing people see when they look at your profile. You want to have a variety that will spark someone’s interest and this means going beyond the “This is what we sell” approach. Does your company have a charity component? There should be a board for that.  How about product ideas and uses? There should be a board for that also.  What common interests do your followers have? Again, create a board for that. (more…)

Web Seminar Recap: September Social Media Updates

On Friday September 14, 2012, Bobby McDonald presented the free web seminar “ What’s New Web Seminar Series: September Social Media Updates.” This web seminar focused on the latest changes and updates to Facebook, LinkedIn and Pinterest.

With just under 1 billion current users, Facebook is the giant on the social media scene and is constantly changing.  LinkedIn recently went through a complete redesign and Pinterest has introduced several new important features.  As marketers it can be tough to keep up with all of the changes and updates across the social media landscape.