Businesses using social media to attract customers can’t ignore the growth of Pinterest. The social media channel has 100 million users in the U.S. as of 2015, and its growth is projected to continue.
While the audience size is impressive, those potential customers are spread out all over the nation. So, how can a store in downtown San Francisco or Philadelphia attract local customers? Great question.
For businesses looking to use Pinterest as a local marketing tool, here are five tips to follow:
1. Include your location everywhere
Most company’s have their business location or address listed on the account name, or maybe in the bio, but that’s about it. Don’t stop there. Add your location to board titles, board descriptions, pin descriptions and even to picture titles.
Google now shows pins as part of search results, so adding location-based descriptors to your page can help customers find you online.
Here’s a look at a Pinterest board from a San Francisco-based travel company. Notice how many times you see “San Francisco.” It’s on the board title, board description, pin descriptions and even on a graphic, “Famous Stairways of San Francisco.”
Bottom line: Don’t be a afraid to overuse your location on Pinterest.
2. Post pictures of local landmarks
When you check out a Pinterest board, what do you do first? You scan the pictures, right? That’s why it makes sense to add some pictures of well-known local spots to your boards.
Let’s say everyone in the area recognizes an old theatre, or a clock tower that sits in the square. Snap photos of these regional icons and add them to your Pinterest boards. You can even create a board that focuses on local landmarks, or add them to existing boards where they make sense.
The idea is to give local shoppers a visual cue that automatically tells them where your business is located.
3. Use Place Pins
One of the cool, and sometimes underutilized features of Pinterest, is its Place Pin feature. Using this tool, you can create a board with your favorite local places, and include a pin for your own business.
Like other boards, your map should have a theme. You could create a board that consists of all your favorite local places or little-known tourist spots.
This kind of board serves as a geographical marker; letting pinners know that you’re a local business.
Place Pins works alongside Foursquare, so a business has to be listed on Foursquare to be pinned. If it’s not listed and you want to add it to your map, you can add it to Foursquare yourself.
4. Share the local love
If you want to generate some local business, share a little love on Pinterest with other local businesses. Follow the hair salon down the street, the bakery next door and the auto mechanic on the edge of town. Just search for local business names in the search bar of Pinterest, or visit their website to get their social links.
At least once or twice a week, you should like, repin or comment on something local.
If you repin something to one of your boards, be sure to “tag” the other business. Tags on Pinterest work like those on Facebook. You know how you tag a friend on a picture? It’s the same concept on Pinterest, just use the @ and the company’s Pinterest handle to tag them. That way the business knows you’re sharing some Pinterest love, and they’ll likely return the favor.
5. Create an event board
If your business hosts an event or sponsors a fundraiser with a local charity, create a specific board for it. Be sure to use all of the local indicators that we’ve mentioned above and promote the event with updates months in advance.
When the event is over, do some follow up marketing. Take some of the glowing comments that are left on your event board and turn them into their own unique pins with Quozio. Here’s a look at what the DIY tools looks like:
These pins not only allow you to spotlight comments that might get lost in the shuffle, but they also give you a reason to update your board after the event in a meaningful way.
By creating specific boards about local events and cross promoting them on all of your social channels, customers will see the impact that you have on the community.
Do you use Pinterest to attract new customers? Share some of your marketing tips with other small businesses in the comment section below. If you’re in need of more Pinterest tips, check out 5 Clever Ways for Brick-and-Mortar Businesses to Use Pinterest.