Dear Abby: How do I use Pinterest for my business?
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  • Abby Fromm’s on the Partner Operations Team in our San Francisco office, and aside from being a huge jetsetter (fun fact: she’s been to every continent except Antarctica!)—she also talks to businesses every single day and gives them advice.

    Here are her answers to the questions she hears most often from businesses:

    Q: Why should I use Pinterest?

    A: On social, people don’t really want to see content from businesses because it feels disruptive. But on Pinterest, people love business content—75% of Pins saved come from businesses. Plus, you get a higher return on your investment because unlike newsfeed-style content, Pins last forever. So for example, a Mother’s Day pancake recipe that was super popular last year could very well get popular again this year.

    Q: What do I need to know about boards?

    A: When you create a board, make sure you include a category and a description that includes relevant keywords. (You can also change your category and description by going to the board, then Edit board.) These details may not seem exciting, but it’s important for getting your boards to show up in search results and feeds.

    Try creating seasonal boards around moments like Valentine’s Day or March Madness—and don’t reuse them. So if you put together a Halloween board last year, create a new version with the top performing Pins from before, as well as some Pins with fresh ideas.

    Q: What Pins should I add to my boards?

    A: Most of the Pins you add should be of your own content or products, but try mixing in Pins that aren’t yours. For example, if you sell scarves, you could add a how-to article about different ways to tie a scarf.

    Q: How do I get more ideas for Pins?

    A: Profile analytics is a good place to start. See which Pins are doing well already, and create new variations of those Pins. Then, browse your audience analytics too. That’s where you can see what your audience is interested in, and get new ideas for your Pins, blog or products.

    Q: What kind of Pins perform best?

    A: Pinners come to Pinterest to look for good ideas they want to try, so make your Pins beautiful, helpful and actionable. You can do this with how-tos or lists, like “10 trips to take in 2016”. In your images, give more context by adding text, or simply show an idea in action. For example, instead of a product shot of a shirt, show Pinners how to wear the shirt with an entire outfit.

    Q: How do I increase my Pinterest presence outside of Pinterest?

    A: On your website, embed boards or individual Pins to increase exposure to your Pinterest account. Make sure to add the Pin It button too, which lets people save content they like from your site.

    In blog posts or marketing emails, add “Pin it” calls-to-action to encourage your customers to save your ideas for later. If you’ve got a physical store, add signs to your displays for your “Most Pinned products” and include in-store ideas on how to use a Pin.


    -Abby Fromm, currently saving ideas to​ San Francisco