The Art of Social Media Marketing and using Pinterest for Business
Is social media marketing an art? The word analytics kind of screams math to me, and as far as I'm concerned, math and art don't exactly go hand in hand.
Analytics can sometimes seem overwhelming.
Business owners know they should be measuring their data, but how do you know exactly what metrics to look at to get the best ROI? And what if it's not working they way you expected it to?
To gain some perspective, we need to first gain some perspective and address the state of digital marketing…and the paid traffic correction that we're currently in the midst of.
Let's start with the obvious.
Unless you're using a very specific retargeting and custom audience strategy, don't expect Facebook ads to work the way they did in 2014. You can read more about that here, but in this article, I'm specifically talking about why the age of interruption is over and how you can leverage the power of Pinterest to help you implement a sustainable online business model.
You likely already know that Pinterest is a search and discovery platform…just like Google.
Search engines are completely different from other social media channels, so you have to understand the nuances of SEO (search engine optimization) in order to leverage all that Pinterest has to offer.
But don't let those three letters (SEO) scare you. It's really not that hard, and anyone can learn how to do it.
Using Pinterest for business allows you to reach your audience at a specific moment…the moment when they're visually attracted to whatever beautiful idea they see on Pinterest.
That's what makes Pinterest different from other social media channels.
Banner ads and low quality content just won’t do well on Pinterest, and that's what I love. No shitty looking clickbait sales pages, around here yo!
Remember when anyone with a sexy headline and a Clickfunnels account could turn a profit in their online business? Well folks, those days of money-hungry, funnel hacking, sleazy business are over (thank goodness!). I still use Clickfunnels, actually, but lets not get side-tracked with my sarcasm.
Here's how this fit's into the big picture of Pinterest.
Russell Brunson, the founder of Clickfunnels, created a truly amazing software tool that has made it very simple for millions of people all over the world to create online businesses using the funnel system.
But the key is, to actually be successful, you first need to clearly understand how to make it all come together, and that begins with understanding the online business model and the proper strategy first.
Not all online businesses are created equal.
In order to really harness the power of Pinterest for business, you have to get deep inside your Pinterest user's mindset, because the right combination of words and pictures can motivate action! And that my friend is how you make money.
The Storytelling Approach to Attraction Marketing
Telling a relevant story at the right time to the right person in a way that allows that person to realize they need your product or service is the real art behind social media marketing…And telling that story in a picture is what Pinterest is all about.
It's not about posting a really long rant on Facebook, pushing the ad to cheap countries to bulk up your “likes” and posting aggressive ad copy.
Lets talk about the psychology of behavior because this will explain why the aforementioned strategy does not work anymore.
People typically make a purchase decision based on whether they think you understand their problem, and whether they think you have the knowledge, resources and commitment to solve their problem.
Social media marketing is simply an extension of the age-old technique of getting to know your customer and then meeting their needs.
The “REAL” strategy is: Measuring brand awareness and harnessing the customer journey using attraction marketing
Not funnel “hacking”.
Not “smashing” the funnel.
(By the way…If you don't quote know what a funnel is yet or understand how to use it to grow your online business, then please take a moment to click here.)
What most of this sub-culture of fake digital marketers neglect to tell you about successful digital marketing is that the online business model is still based on traditional sales, and you can't make it work using the same shitty, high pressure sales techniques that never worked before.
“Hello, Mr. McDigital…1999 is calling…you left your pitch-heavy, automated webinar that's disguised as a masterclass over there, next to your friend who's Facebook Ad looks exactly the same as yours.
If you don’t like sales and you want to start a blog or an online business, you better learn to like sales…you just have to figure out the right way to attract your audience.
(Hint: It's not from any mentors who drank from the dirty pond.)
What's the dirty pond? It's the fact that nearly everyone “sneezed out an online business” lately and they all think they are giving out good advice, but really the only thing they are doing is telling the same story in a different way.
The reality is, nobody can tell you how to grow your online business, you have to let your own statistics guide your decision making.
For businesses, marketing has entered a new era, the Age of the Consumer. It takes a focused and forward-thinking business owner to embrace the ever-changing media landscape without sacrificing strategy and measurable results.
So…you want to know how to make it all come together? Let's do this!
Pinterest is the best kept secret in online marketing.
Contrary to popular belief…it's not Instagram.
Well, lets talk about who your target audience is for a minute. If your business is targeting people outside of the US, you’re in luck because 80% of the people who use Instagram are from outside the US according to the 2019 State of Social Media Report by Buffer.
But here’s something else to consider…if your business targets upper middle class, college educated women from the US, guess where 80% of your audience hangs out?
Yeah, it’s Pinterest.
More specifically, lets think about what those female head of households are looking at and shopping for…
If your business has anything to do with home decor, jewelry and clothing, makeup and hairstyles, children, weddings, books, travel, or food, and you’re not leveraging the power of Pinterest, you might want to start thinking about it.
So how do you measure ROI (return on investment) and really make sense of Pinterest analytics?
Well the first step is to make sure your Pinterest account is properly set up for business and that you're doing all the things that you should be doing (including SEO) in order to drive traffic to your website.
So before you can actually evaluate your Pinterest Analytics as a small business owner, you need to actually have some numbers to look at. Starting at the beginning? Download my checklist to help get you on track for success with Pinterest.
Using Your Own Pinterest Analytics to Understand Your Target Audience
In terms of using social media to promote selling your product or service: don’t assume someone is ready to have a particular conversation with you just because you’re ready to have the conversation with them.
In other words, just because you put your business out there doesn't mean people will come flocking. The social media fairies don't work that way.
Consumers now have access to more information and have more control over the sales process than ever. With this change, a new way of selling has emerged. This method combines the power of Pinterest's search engine optimization with a business owner's expertise in both design and communication skills in a way that not only brings revenue to the business, but it deepens the value of the overall relationship.
Because social media marketing is an approach to the sales and marketing of your product that is relationship-focused instead of transaction-focused, the immediate goal isn’t necessarily to get a sale as quickly as possible; the immediate goal is to establish a relationship.
So if there is no sale…how do you understand what is working and what isn't working when it comes to your Pinterest analytics?
The key is to know exactly what Pinterest metrics to look at and where to find them.
Here's a quick snapshot.
If you look at Analytics directly from the Pinterest dashboard, be sure you change the drop down to “Link Clicks” as well as change the radio button to only your website to see which of your pins are getting clicked on the most. The default setting is “Impressions” which is a vanity metric that doesn't really give you any concrete information.
Focus on the design of your pins
This may sound obvious, but if you're not a designer by trade, the creative, typography, and color combinations might not come naturally to you. Use quality stock art, and most importantly, do not use free stock. Use Google analytics to review which pins are producing the most traffic, and model your future designs off those pins. Buy a subscription to someplace like PixiStock or IvoryMix.
Here's a example of two different pins that lead to the same blog post. Can you guess which one has more link clicks? It's the one with the prettier design.
If you need some help with templates for Pin design, the easiest way to get started is to create a free account with Canva.com.
The Age of Interruption is Over!
Understand the digital sales process. Instead of interrupting customers with a sales pitch, a product or service is marketed to a consumer when the opportunity presents itself. Aside from the obvious (answering questions and responding to inquiries on your own social channels, and using email nurturing the right way) how exactly can business owners join the social selling conversation?
Here is a short video to show you exactly what Pinterest Analytics to look at and where to find them.
A few other examples of ways to incorporate social selling in your online business:
A potential consumer asks a question that your product or service is uniquely able to handle. How do you find those asking questions? Solution: If you don’t have the budget to invest in monitoring apps (such as Cison.com) simply search an industry specific hashtag to see what thought leaders are conversing about. #DigitalMarketing
Example: A consumer expresses a concern or problem with a competitor’s product or service. Solution: Offer your solution in the comments. Be careful not to force your product or service down someone’s throat. Instead point them to an article your company has produced (such as a blog) or another educational piece that shows that you understand the problem they are faced with and how to resolve it.
Example: A consumer asks for your recommendation by email based on previous content you wrote about or expertise they know you have. Provide a direct link to a piece of content or an offer that provides the answer to what they are looking for.
You want to give people only what they will find valuable. If your business is a petstore and a potential consumer is interested in puppies, you don’t want to send them an email trying to sell them a fishtank. If you do, it’s likely they will opt-out of your list and you’ll never have the chance to sell anything puppy related to them again.
How does social media marketing work in the context of Pinterest?
Social selling isn’t a straightforward process; it is rather a collection of strategies designed to establish a relationship with your leads and customers.
Unlike traditional selling, social selling allows you to establish longer-lasting relationships with leads and clients by delivering only what your prospect is interested in. In order to do this, you need to understand the nuances of the Pinterest Platform in order to take full advantage of it for marketing your business.
Here are 4 tips to help you take full advantage of your social channels to help you attract real, targeted leads that are stronger and better qualified:
1. Social Listening
Pay close attention to and respond to potential sales opportunities and clients through comments on your blog and on your social channels. Often this technique is overlooked by companies who don’t have a lot of time or recognize the value of customer service.
It’s important to realize that digital media is a powerful way to connect with your audience and if used properly, your brand’s voice will be amplified tenfold by interactions that can be seen and heard by people all over the digital world.
2. Brand Building
Establishing your brand as a subject matter expert and your business as a credible authority within a particular niche is very important in today’s online landscape.
People perform online research more than ever before, so a combination of search engine ranking and detailed content that is relevant to a particular search or need will help position you ahead of your competition. Post a thought leadership article on LinkedIn or a carefully crafted Tweet, but whatever you do, make sure it's thoughtfully aligned with your core values.
Create blogs, videos, white papers, ebooks, or other educational information about your industry that offers insight and value for current and prospective clients. The key is to provide something valuable. Don't be cheap.
Make sure your content is informative and relevant. More content doesn’t necessarily equate to more visits…remember it's always quality over quantity.
Your Pinterest analytics will tell you exactly which pins are gaining the most traction. The best kind of content marketing doesn’t feel like marketing at all; instead it tells a story and appeals to your prospect’s emotions. Consider what problem your product or service solves, and then create content around delivering a compelling story.
Remember when an Excel spreadsheet replaced the old-fashioned rolodex? These days even a smart spreadsheet isn’t going to amplify your prospecting. The gold mine of opportunity that exists with a CRM platform allows you to identify prospects for up-sell or cross-sell, convert existing customers to new products or services, target new marketing, or even track invoices.
Managing your interactions between customers and your business using an automation tool is the best way to monitor, analyze and follow-up upon the metrics delivered by your digital marketing efforts. Different platforms make sense for different size businesses and industries.
For businesses making over $250,000 per year, I highly recommend HubSpot. If your business is making from zero to $250,000, then your best option for marketing automation is ConvertKit.
Last but not least…
Keep in mind that the true art of social media marketing on Pinterest is knowing that it's not about you, your opinions, your point of view or your circumstances.
It’s about helping others by meeting their needs, understanding their concerns, and adding a valuable solution to their path forward. Have a question about Pinterest? Join my FREE Private Facebook Group: Pinterest Marketing