Pinterest is a visual platform that allows you to create and share new ideas and interests by posting, or ‘pinning’, images and videos to a pinboard. The platform, used as a tool for self-expression and research, continues to grow in popularity as it contributes to the ever-evolving shift in consumer behavior.
And with over 100 million active users liking, re-pinning and commenting on boards on a daily basis, it’s fair to say that this social platform moves far beyond the world of digital ‘window shopping’. With the growth of construction business’ now using Pinterest to engage and inspire architects, contractors or homeowners, it may be time to re-evaluate your own social media strategy.
So how could you as a construction business successfully implement Pinterest as a tool for growing your online reputation?
This post will run through 5 simple pointers to help any building product manufacturer understand how to use Pinterest successfully and what to bear in mind when using it as a business tool.
1. Make Pinterest Shareable
First things first, ensure that you register your Pinterest account with the same email address as your business’ Twitter account; if you choose the Facebook option it will connect with your personal Facebook account rather than your business page (we hope that shortly Pinterest will enable Facebook business pages to become part of Pinterest’s shared option).
This will enable you to integrate your social platforms with one another in order to raise awareness of your brand; sharing information in the form of pins across Twitter for example, and vice versa with hashtags, will enable you to utilize your existing following elsewhere to build a stronger online reputation on Pinterest.
See below how ISG PLC have effectively generated awareness of their Pinterest account by using a hashtag campaign on Twitter called #pinoftheday.
Due to this integrated campaign, their Twitter followers have gradually become accustomed to viewing a range of Pinterest links on a daily basis. However ensure that you are able to manage these expectations; stating that you’ll post a pin every day on Twitter requires time and organisation. Perhaps change this to a weekly post in order to make the process for team members a lot easier.
Mitie have also generated a campaign across Pinterest and Twitter called #iamamitiestar; this employee recognition award has helped to emphasise their strong company culture in order to reiterate their statement that ‘Mitie is all about its people’.
Campaign mentioned on Twitter:
Campaign board on Pinterest:
Ultimately this memorable campaign will help to attract potential employees to join their growing team.
2. Don’t Hard Sell –Inspire
We all know that it’s important to show off the quality of your work; by all means as a building product manufacturer who is aiming to impress architects and contractors, do shout about an impressive project you’ve participated in; Pinterest and its visual framework gives you a great opportunity to do this.
However, what makes a construction company stand out from the crowd is their ability to not solely talk about themselves. As discussed in our recent social media project this is the general rule of thumb when using most social media sites.
Although architects, contractors and homeowners benefit from visual representations of projects, products, infographics and even surveys, delivering added value by showing a little insight into your company and sharing inspirational images [aside from your own projects] is key. After all, as shown in the Mitie campaign example, building a strong following comes from showcasing your business’ personality.
Therefore, create an inspirational moodboard of projects you may not have been directly involved with but are great examples of impressive work; this will not only create a Pinterest account that displays variety, but it will also show your audience that you appreciate others’ hard work as well as your own.
Glazing Vision’s ‘Get Inspired’ pinboard is full of a range of property extensions and designs seen in architectural magazines and websites; rather than solely promoting their own case-study page, the images pinned here are to fuel the imagination of architects, contractors and homeowners alike rather than to hard-sell their products.
In addition, showcase your employees and life around the office; show them working together, making your products/services, and show some of the fun activities your business participates in such as company outings, parties and award ceremonies. Letting people in behind-the-scenes will enable you to instantly humanize your brand and make it stand out from the crowd.
BAM Construct UK have built an excellent community by creating pinboards such as ‘Our amazing people’ and ‘Behind the Scenes at BAM’. Similarly to Mitie, this inspires their followers on a different level to support their company and become part of the team.
3. Build a community
Also known as community or shared boards, group boards are similar to regular Pinterest boards except that multiple users can contribute and add pins. It’s easy to spot group boards from personal boards by the ‘gray people icon’ located in the top right corner of a board.
Pinterest group boards are a great way to meet other users, reassert your industry knowledge and increase the exposure of your pins. They can result in a boost of followers, increase repins and most importantly, create great brand ambassadors.
By inviting them to pin to your brand’s group board, you’ll create higher levels of engagement by involving them on a more personal level. Other followers are more then more likely to take note of this and be encouraged to browse your company themselves.
To find group boards that are relevant to the construction business, try using Board Deck. The tool works by searching for and returning group boards that you can evaluate and potentially start incorporating into your pinning strategy.
For more information on shared boards click here.
4. Pin well and rank high
Individual Pinterest accounts, as well as each pin board you create, is being indexed by Google. Therefore, similarly to Google+, make sure you give them descriptive titles containing your keywords. So, a Pinboard called ‘timber decking for residential properties’ packed full of product images and descriptions, would be better than a board simply called ‘decking’ which is generic and non-specific.
These SEO-friendly terms should not only describe the content behind the pin but should be terms that other people typically use when searching for products or topics. This will increase the chance of people finding your pins using the search tool, and the more people that post your items on their boards or link to it, the more followed links you’ll be getting. Ultimately this will contribute towards improving your overall search rankings.
5. CTA’s and incentives
Therefore create descriptions that will grab attention immediately by keeping them short and concise. Make it clear to the user why you have published a particular pin and where you want them to go after viewing it. After all, why should they click on the link that you’ve attached?
When sharing information on building projects or product installations, make it worthwhile an architect clicking on the link to your website; this will then guide them towards making a positive impression about your services.
See for example how Celotex, aside from sharing information on events, brand culture and applications have also created a board on products. In each description they have implemented a mix of SEO friendly terms, hashtags and links back to their website – using a rhetorical question also helps to drive engagement and urge a response.
Ofcourse, whether Pinterest is worth using will depend highly upon what you wish to achieve as a construction business and whether you have the resource to effectively manage the platform on a regular basis. Like all social media platforms, it takes valuable time and patience to build an online reputation and so rather than using a wide range of platforms, try to choose those that will best reflect your brand and the services you provide. This will ensure that all social interaction aligns with your business KPI’s and each platform has an individual target of its own.
If we’ve missed anything or you wish to share your thoughts with us on Pinterest, please leave a comment below. And ofcourse – if you found the post useful please give it a share!
For more information on social media for construction, download our social media E-book.