Tips to get your business using Pinterest

Pinterest has become one of the best social networks for marketing your business. Unlike Twitter and Facebook, Pinterest puts a premium on pictures, which makes it easier to spotlight new products and services. You can upload photos of all your merchandise to convert followers into loyal customers.

The site is relatively new, so many small business owners are still trying to find the best marketing strategies. Through trial and error, entrepreneurs have begun finding what works on Pinterest.

Below is a look a the most marketing mistakes made on Pinterest so you can avoid them.

No clear plan
As with all social networks, you need a clear strategy to succeed. Inc. Magazine points out that many owners join Pinterest simply because its popularity is growing and do not have objectives in mind when starting their marketing campaigns. Debba Haupert, channel director at Collective Bias, believes that success is predicated on having a keyword strategy and understanding how Pinterest groups its users.

“Know your keywords and use them in profiles, pins, and boards. Know the categories where your customers will find you. You have to put some thought into it before you jump in,” Haupert told the news source.

Unrelated content
On Pinterest you can “pin” pictures to your “board” from other users to create a unique profile. You can upload content that isn’t directly related to your business, but that is a huge mistake. According to The Business Journals, you should only pin pictures that are relevant to your company and its objectives. Customers don’t follow you for pop culture references  – they want to see your merchandise and learn about your brand. Only use content that is tied directly to your industry so that consumers can understand who you are and what you have to offer.

Unverified accounts
Similar to Twitter, Pinterest has a verification system that shows that your account is authorized. You shouldn’t leave your business’ page unverified because it shows users that you might not control of its content. CIO Magazine notes that you can easily correct this issue by requesting the verification file and downloading it to your server. Once you’ve finished, a checkmark will appear next to your profile’s heading so that users know that it is an authorized account.

Pinterest’s popularity is growing among small business owners, which will likely continue in the future. Have you noticed any common mistakes on the social network?

Adam Naide

Adam Naide is Executive Director of Marketing for Social Media at Cox Communications, where he leads overall strategy and execution for all of the company’s social media activities including audience engagement, campaigns, demand creation and retention. Every week, over six million consumers and small businesses engage with Cox Communications on Facebook, Twitter, You Tube, Pinterest, Google Plus, and Linked In. Cox Business connects online with small & mid-size businesses from its small business blog, Cox Blue.

In 2012, Adam was named a “Top Ten Social Media Maven” by Multichannel News and to Cable Fax’s Digital Hot List.

You can follow Adam on Twitter at @adamnaide where he tweets about social media, and his other passion, cereal.

Adam holds a bachelor’s degree from Emory University and an MBA from the University of Georgia.Naide lives in Alpharetta, Ga., with his wife, Karen, and two teenage children.