Pinterest as a Marketing Tool

The New Kind of Window Shopper

Pinterest is an elite online photo sharing website, designed for people to organize and share all the things they love on a virtual pinning board. Once you join Pinterest, you have access to millions of “pins,” the images that have been posted by a user.

People use Pinterest for a number of different reasons. Some are looking to collect delicious recipes, share their favorite books, movies, music, quotes, and get great ideas for a new hairstyle or DIY project. However, one of the most common uses of Pinterest a virtual kind of window shopping.

Users seek images on the web or use their own digital photographs of clothes, furniture, art, jewelry, technology, etc. that they would love to own. Then, others who share the same passion for their style ideas can “like” the image or “re-pin” it onto their own board with the simple click of a button. Instantly, a limitless amount of images are available to millions of potential clients.

A Sneezer’s Dream Come True!

So, what makes this important to manufacturers’ and sellers’ marketing strategies? First off, it’s free publicity. It wouldn’t cost a thing, but someone’s time, to open up a Pinterest account for the manufacturer/store; or simply install Pinterest’s “Pin-it!” button on an already existing website. This way, sneezers can easily share products with everyone they know. Yeah, remember what sneezers are? Sneezers are people that live to recommend your products to others? Pinterest is full of them!

Even better, Pinterest, being an upcoming social media site, has aligned itself with other wildly successful forms of social media—Facebook and Twitter! Now, if a “Pinner” so chooses, they may connect their Pinterest account to one or more of their other accounts, meaning optimum exposure for anything and everything they “pin.” So, not only are these images going out to the millions of Pinterest users, but the billions of international “Facebookers” and “Tweeters.”

What Brand is this?

Manufacturers and stores also need to be involved to maintain their branding. So many images on Pinterest have no link back to their original websites, no logos, and no pricing. The more the original supplier and/or original users of these images are involved, the more likely an image will lead back to its brand. In addition, with a Pinterest account, a manufacturer or store can track the amount of times the image of a particular item is “re-pinned” by users. This could be a great way to tell what people are actually interested in or at least dreaming about buying.

When Window Shoppers Decide to Take a Step Inside

Another key point to make about Pinterest’s marketing abilities is that it’s not so much about making a sale as it is getting the look or style out there. Pinterest is about building inspiration, promoting new trends, getting a look at what’s in right now. Sales may come when a really interested “Pinner” clicks on the image to be instantly transported to the seller’s website, but only if someone makes sure they can get there!

This blog post was contributed by Aubrie Parth. Connect with Aubrie on Google+.


Why Google+ is a Must for Small Businesses

 Many entrepreneurs are inquisitive to know whether Google+ can help them. Some of them feel already successful after using Twitter and Facebook hence they don’t see the need for a third social platform. The failures experienced while using Google in the past is among the reasons business owners are still raising questions even after the launch of Google+.

Well, the truth is Google is the leading search engine that is now integrating Google+ social activity with Google Search. Although Facebook has made a name as a social networking company, Google is establishing what some people think is an arduous alternative for small businesses. Below are just some of the cues to get you inspired:

  • The Social Factors are Huge – Google is devoted to being social since it understands social sites generate greater traffic. You will start to see several integration pages among the search results. This trend of building loyalty in the social sense for those using Google+ can easily gain traction with time. 
  • The Inbound Web Traffic is Free – Google has an enormous SEO value. Creating a profile on Google+ will give you an inbound link to the site represented by the page. This will even work better when you connect your website with your page on Google+.
  • The Creative Process is Simple – Creating pages on Google+ is easy. Although not mandatory, it is essential to have an image, avatar or logo that represents your own brand when creating a page. It's also wise to write a solid "About" section that describes what your small business does

You may be asking what you need to do in using the Google+ pages for the success of your business. Here are three main ideas to help you:

1. Build devoted and loyal traffic: Share on your pages in social media platforms that you have a new business page on Google+ and invite your friends to circle you and get updates. You can also mail your clients inviting them to get to Google+ and circle you. You can segment your followers using the circles on Google+.

2. Collaborate with others: While on Google+ page, it is possible to send links, updates and photos as well as work in conjunction with other users on this site. Other people will be required to circle your own page so as to let you comment on the thread updates. As you keep engaging in these ways, other users will include you to their own circles hence resulting to greater brand awareness.

3. Host a live video chat ("Hangout"): This feature is what makes Google an exceptional social network. The best way to work with your target market is to host a hangout then invite clients to join in. The point is to listen rather than be heard and provide helpful feedback to the users on the hangout. A few ideas can inspire you in selecting the hangout topic. These include:

  • Latest product previews hangout.
  • A hangout on the relevant tools of trade.
  • News and other industrial happenings hangout.
  • Questions answered for new customer hangout.
  • Consumer appreciation hangout.

Is your small business using Google+ yet? If not, we highly suggest getting on board soon. You business can be a local authority figure in search, so long as you optimize your Google+ page and share quality content the attracts in-market customers. To learn how to optimize your web presence on Google+ and other online channels, stay in tune with the Righteous Business Blog.


Discovering Your Ideal Customer: How to Build a Group of Passionate Fans from Nothing

Too many small businesses picture their target market to be everyone in their local proximity. This fallacy can lead to loss of focus, and potentially, a loss of business.

For small businesses and start-ups, finding and catering to your target market as soon as possible will minimize time spent lost in the dark. Without a precise target market, your business plan will be spread too thin and you won’t be able to be everything to everyone.

A good word in marketing is empathy, which is defined as the intellectual identification with or vicarious experiencing of the feelings, thoughts, or attitudes of another. Marketers need to be empathetic in order to cultivate a following of people who find value in your products and services.

Below I offer some insights to help you discover your ideal customer and overall target market.

Starting with the Smallest Market Possible

Don’t get hung up only focusing on one customer, or one message. When starting out, there’s little to hang your hat on. The key is to not spend time lost in the dark. Highlighting one aspect that makes your company valuable and then communicating that to your target market will get the ball rolling in building an audience.

Discover Why You’re Valuable

Your business plan will be successful only if the market cares about it. Defining why you’re valuable to a market and testing whether the hypothesis holds up is important in moving forward. Moving forward in business is impossible when the hypotheses don’t test well in the lab.

Desire Feedback

Small businesses and start-ups don’t have the capabilities that a thriving corporation has where they can learn a lot each day from customer interaction. Formulating and testing theories on the fly is the only option available in the early stages of implementing a business plan.

Setting up meetings with prospects who fall within your smallest market group is a good way to start finding out what’s working and what’s not. It can be hard to find the prospects, so joining industry or trade groups containing your target market is a safe start.

Offering free samples and beta test relationships to individuals willing to provide feedback is also helpful. Your business will only start to evolve when you get the message and focus out to the target you’re intending to reach.

Make a Customer Sketch

After all these plans and tests, you need to identify every last detail of your customer. Most of the information attained will not be commonly understood, and thus needs to be gathered through additional research in heavy behavioral places such as social media.

Thorough research in the social media platforms will help kick start your CRM (Customer Relationship Management) and allow you to start building custom profiles. There are several CRM platforms to assist you in your customer sketch.

Worketc, Batchbook, Nimble, Highrise and Cubesocial all provide excellent CRM tools, collecting as much customer data in one place as currently possible. These tools will help you build custom profiles with more information than you could ever capture on your own.

Never Stop Evolving

Perhaps the most important step to learn is that your business will always undergo changes to the strategy. When you discover your ideal customer you should look back at your basic business model and overall strategy. If you want to have a great business model, it needs to be customer-influenced, even customer-forced. It’s wise to think about how your perfect client will affect your offerings, revenue streams, pricing and ways of distribution.

Think of finding your market as a pivotal line in a crossword puzzle; it should help you figure out more lines to the puzzle, or strategies to the model. Game plan how you can reach your target market, potential partners and the resources you either need or have in order to reach the target market effectively.

You’re never done evolving if you want to be successful. Businesses learn and grow; their models change shape. The on-going process of experimentation and discovery is equally important to what you’re discovering.

This article was scribed by blogger, SEO, and web marketer Kyle Blasco. You can connect with Kyle on Google+.


Where will SEO be in 2013?

The World that Once was, Is, and Will Become

The generation of our grandparents has lived without the Internet, cell phones, and social media for most of their lives. The current generation, labeled the Internet or Net Generation, has been fully immersed and utterly dominated by this technology. They carry it in their purses, school bags, and in their pockets. It’s in their homes, classrooms, and cars. No one knows and understands technology better, or can use it to cultivate and share information faster than ever before. But, what’s next? As we come to understand and speak with technology more and more, does that mean we become less in touch with how to talk to and influence our own kind?

The Ways of the World Tend to Repeat Themselves

Just like the current generation, SEO has become more about speaking with computers, teaching them how to deliver information to human beings through a set of codes or list of keywords. But, like most things in this world, a shift can begin that transforms SEO back into humans reaching out and actually speaking to other humans. It’s important to learn how to become personable like our grandparents, and one of the best ways a SEO copywriter can do that is to write for readers and not for computers.

The Beginning of the Transformation

The Internet is a social place. It is a great way to deliver information at the speed of light all across the world. But not all information that travels on the web is reliable. The best way to reach people is to write quality pieces that are relevant to your audience. These pieces may also hold their integrity and last longer as people recognize their worth and share with others. The use of other social media such as blogs, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, etc are important tools to be utilized as well.

SEO in 2013

Combining the strengths of years of generations, in 2013 SEO can be about this move to start speaking to one another directly again. In the future people will still be using the Internet to gain useful information and SEO copywriters can be the ones to continually deliver it to them.

This blog post was contributed by Aubrie Parth. Connect with Aubrie on Google+.