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5 Ways to Use Pinterest For Your eCommerce Business

Americans stay on Pinterest for an hour on average and seventeen minutes. That’s only the U.S. But there’s a whole world of visitors on Pinterest and companies are already making sure they put up the tent.

It’s the fastest growing social media site in history with 10.4 million users and counting, according to Search Engine Journal.

Pinterest is gaining traction ever so slowly and it holds tremendous value for businesses that can share visuals.

So, how do you get Pinterest to work for your eCommerce Store?

Here are some ideas:

Show ‘em What’s Behind The Scenes

A bit of vulnerability is good for marketing. With that vulnerability exposed to your customers, you invoke a state of emotional attachment. Your customers start caring for you. They get a “story” instead of a pitch. They have something they can relate to. Sadly, most ecommerce stores lack life. You won’t get much except some visual detail and content overload.

Drive engagement by sharing your experiences. Show them how you do business, introduce your staff and contractors. Do customer spotlights.

Go beyond the usual. Find a way to connect.

Narrate Stories Through Images

Your ecommerce store is worth a thousand stories.

Since Pinterest is all visual and potentially viral, your stories will find a way to strike a million hearts. Use images to convey messages, narrate stories, or perhaps maintain sets of visuals to inform.

There are stories behind products, your own business, and other things you might do such as charity. If you do social programs, you could share those images as well.

Curate Content

Content curation is an art. As a business, you could tap into Pinterest’s potential by curating “Interesting products”, “inspiring messages” or anything else of general interest to your potential customers and/or followers.
For instance, if you have a niche store that sells only accessories for Apple’s line of products, you could curate pins to anything related to apple such as news, information, and tips.

Small online store that sells cupcakes? Put up that entire assortment of cup cakes up.

Now apply this to accessories, bags, gifts, fashion, and B2B products. Anything goes.

Use Product specific “Pin it” buttons

The only way customers know that your products exist is when you have product images in place. Add a product specific Pin button on every image and you keep the lines open for sharing, conversations, and for your pins to be “repinned”.

Shirts, trousers, mugs, handicraft, cool electronic products, or anything else that you sell can go viral with a simple “pin it” button that goes with every image on your eCommerce store.

If you need help with a step-by-step guide on how to add a “pin it” button to product images on your store, you might want to take a look at this Shopify’s guide on how to do just that.

Shopify also allows you to sell on Pinterest with Buyable Pins.

Play with wish lists and gifts

It’s only human to love; with love comes the great “gifts” industry. Wish lists act as a great motivation for Customers who aren’t ready to buy (or can’t buy). Further wish lists function as an open declaration for others (friends and relatives) to know what’s on customers’ mind.

For wish lists and for customers looking to buy gifts for others, Pinterest has a way to allow you to tap into this potential. Shopify’s Ultimate Pinterest Guide for Online Businesses reveals this nifty feature called “Pinterest Gift tab” which allows you to let your products show up in curated “gift ideas”, for instance.

Do you have a business account with Pinterest? Would you like to show us what you got?

Are you On Pinterest Yet? You Should (& One Smart App To Do It)

Are you On Pinterest Yet? You Should (& One Smart App To Do It)

Can you actually sit there and avoid more than 72.8 million users with 85% of them female (you do know they make all the buying decisions, don’t you?).

Pinterest is all visual, boasts of buyer intent, and is a fresh alternative to Facebook and Twitter. It’s as much an opportunity for you to boost impressions, bring in some traffic, and get you all the branding you need.

And some brands do it really well.

Creating on boards on Pinterest also helps you to collect, curate, and share information that’d otherwise get drowned in the order of the posts you publish on your blog.

Pinterest recently rolled on “Buy” pins feature with clear intent to send out a message: Pinterest means business and it’s business you don’t want to miss out on.

Now, I know what you are thinking: Damn, another social network to get on? Like being on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram wasn’t enough?

No, it wasn’t enough. Yes, stop wondering why you should be on Pinterest, and here’s a smart way to get there:

Say Hello to TailWind

The Tailwind App is a suite of powerful tools to help you manage your Pinterest for Business or Pinterest for yourself. It boasts of Pinterest management, analytics, and other marketing tools.

Much like HootSuite is an exhaustive app to help you manage your social media in general, the TailWind App helps you manage Pinterest specifically.

Manage & Automate Pins

Sure, the “Pin It” button on your browser is handy, but it’d still call for your active management. Social manage is best done passively (where the active part should only be responding to others and actually getting into conversations). Use TailWind to create, manage, and automate your Pinterest updates calendar.

You can instantly create a “Pin Schedule” if you like based on your audience engagement, make your boards go viral, and bring in much needed traffic. You can schedule multiple pins at once (Chrome Extension available).

Obviously, you can track pins, repins, likes, comments, traffic, and revenue (I know you are salivating now).

Monitor & Gain Insights

You don’t want to throw out pins in the dark. You’d do well when you know your audience better, monitor your performance, and create just the kind of content your audience needs.

TailWind also allows you to gain insights about your audience, helps you gather interesting content to pin, curate amazing content, discover conversations, identify influencers, and also gives you a way to monitor your brand impact on Pinterest.

Analytics & Reporting

All your effort on Pinterest shouldn’t go without those rewards. That’s why it makes sense to use analytics to help you steer yourself to success.

Tailwind App helps you track growth, measure Pinterest followers over time, benchmark virality of your content, and analyze revenue. Measure the impact of your conversations, the content you share, Pin performance, traffic, and your individual pin growth.

Testing on Pinterest, yeah.

Content marketing has changed and posting “anything” won’t do. You can, instead, filter your pins by boards, categories, keywords, or hashtags to dig deeper and see what kind of content seems to be working for you.

See which of your pins are the most successful, analyze activity using heat maps, and also determine best days and time slots for optimized Pinterest Management.

Check out TailWind today and tell me how it works for you.

If you’d like to connect with me on Pinterest, I’ll be happy you did.

5 Effective Ideas for Brushing Up your Facebook Marketing Skills

The last decade has witnessed a huge change in the way customers communicate with brands and lead their digital lives. The massive popularity of social media networking has pushed businesses to redefine their conventional roles and let customers control the brands.

Today, businesses can no longer hide beyond an impersonal facade  They have to opt for a friendly approach, interact with customers, and reveal their humane side. Scary, but true. You could get started on Facebook fan page, but the trick is that you have to do it right. As Blake Chandlee, VP, Facebook correctly puts it, “Social media is not an easiest way but if you do it right, the results can be phenomenal “.

If you want to brush up your Facebook marketing skills, here are some effective ideas.

Leverage your Marketing Campaigns with Videos

In the digital marketing industry, innovation is the key to survival. And if you encourage your customers to only ‘Like’ your posts/products/comments, I don’t call it innovation. Innovation comes in form of videos or publishing stories. Take help of the Facebook Open Graph to tell intriguing stories of your business. Or use it for selling your products.

For example, you can use Open Graph for interviewing a client who tells his experience of using your products. You can also opt for it to highlight how people can benefit from your products. The options are infinite.

Contests, Anyone?

 Contests are a great way to enhance engagement on Facebook fan page. They are fun, interesting. Also, everyone loves prizes. Another advantage of organizing a contest is that it lets you grow your mailing list. It’s a good, if not an innovative marketing strategy. The best thing is that you can promote varied types of contests, ranging from video, sweepstakes to photo contests.

If you check the Facebook page of ‘How to Market your Horse Business’, you would notice that the company has used the concept of contest innovatively in its cover and app photo. I loved the idea.

Opt for Sponsored Stories

 Try out the latest advertising tool offered by Facebook-sponsored stories. Sponsored stories are unique because they allow marketers to highlight advertisements to the friends of a fan.

David Fisher, VP, Advertising and Global Operations, the performance of sponsored stories are better, as compared to conventional Facebook advertisements. He comments, “The key reasons it works is that it is engaging, it is social, and it is reflective of what brings people to Facebook overall, which is to share and connect”. The popularity of sponsored stories is expected, since these advertisements contain real activity of a friend. Thus, it acts as a strong word of mouth marketing.

Respect the Intelligence of your Facebook Fans

It’s true that for some businesses, marketing is the driving force behind acquiring Facebook fans. However, measuring them on quantitative terms is not a good idea always. Understand that they are real human beings who crave to be part of your network. A half hearted status update posted on behalf of your company cannot satisfy their intellectual desires.

Respect their intelligence by offering them insiders’ info, interesting trivia and future marketing plans.

Further, the since the organic reach on Facebook plummeted anyway, you’d need a lot more than just updates.

Infuse your Own Personality in the FB Page

You may be using Facebook for professional purposes, but connecting with your audience on a personal level is a good idea. Pat Flynn, owner of the blog ‘Smart Passive Income’, offers professional advice to his fans on his Facebook page. However, he also offers a glimpse of his personal life in the Facebook page. This retains interest of his fans and allows them to connect with him on a deeper level.

Refine your Facebook marketing skills with these effective strategies. Reach out to a wider audience.

Here’s a better way to manage your Facebook Page using HootSuite (Free Trial)

How Twitter Gets You Big Wins, Only If You Behave

How Twitter Gets You Big Wins, Only If You Behave

Small businesses have a losing proposition on social media, and that includes Twitter.

All that futzing around with others’ content, engagement, conversations, tweets, retweets, favs, shares, and everything else that goes on out there is a major time suck in a way.

That’s time consuming. Here’s how:

Time spent on social media

Img Credits: Buffer Blog

And see how much time marketers & business owners whittle away on social:

TIme marketers spend on social

Img Credits: Buffer blog

Save time with Social

Neil Patel wrote a post on the Buffer blog to show that business owners spend 50% more time on social media than non-business owners. Sam Milbrath of HootSuite writes about how hard it is to scale up services (if you are an agency) and mange multiple accounts while have to schedule your updates on social media.

It doesn’t have to be that way thanks to technology. Armed with industry leading social media management tools such as HootSuite, you can practically scale your social media efforts.

Technology apart and putting social media awesomeness aside, there are a few things you should be doing on Twitter.

Here’s what:

Know what social media wants. Give it just that

Most businesses expect something from all the time and effort they put into social media management. They’d go like:

  • We want our fans and followers to grow over time.
  • Get us 12,546 Twitter followers by the end of 3 months.
  • What is Social Media ROI?

Here’s some news for you: there’s no way you can buy your way into people’s hearts.

Throwing money at social media is like paying every visitor at a dinner party to listen to non-stop pitching about your products and services, all night long.

Expecting fans and followers to grow is to assume that you are so awesome and that you are desperate for the world to like you.

All that is lame.

Social media is “social” media. Get social or get out. Grow organically or die.

Create a system. Now

You won’t be able to “wing” it on social. Because winging it takes all day. You’ll need a system. This is how it could be:

  •  Assign yourself exactly X number of updates per network, per day/week.
  •  Signup for a HootSuite Pro Account and use scheduling, auto-scheduling, or bulk uploads features to post updates into the future.
  • If you can, upload posts (counting up to 100s, if you have to) ahead of time using Bulk uploading and forget about it.
  • Well, you can’t really forget since your updates get some traction and love. When you do, retweet, fav, and thank people.
  • Get into conversations for exactly 30 mins a day, and no more than that.

Here’s the most important thing after you spend your 30 minutes: get off social media and focus on something else.

Focus on building relationships

When you are out there, having conversations or seeing new followers follow you or when you get into a live Tweet chat, it’s your opportunity to build relationships with real people. Focus on that.

  • Head out to their profile and see what they do. Who are these people?
  • Visit their websites, check out their blog posts, follow them back to stay tuned to their tweets, and support their cause.

Say, like this:

• Make your follow Fridays focused on one person/brand/company per #FF tweet. You know? Something like this:

Be good on social

Don’t get nasty. Don’t turn into a drone, and don’t overdo anything. That includes over using hashtags, as Hayley Mullen of Unbounce notes.

Also, stop using automated messages, not responding to all the love you get, hustling and peddling on social, and more.

 

How does Twitter work for you? What are you on Social for?

______________________________

If you’d like to learn more on how to Make Twitter Work For Your Business, download my free guide now.

4 Strong Reasons You Should Publish on LinkedIn

4 Strong Reasons You Should Publish on LinkedIn

Matt Owen of Econsultancy wrote a post on how to use LinkedIn’s publishing tool, but we’d like to tell you why. We did publish a post earlier on how to make your free LinkedIn account work for you. Now, we are going further.

If you are in business of any kind, LinkedIn is where you should be. LinkedIn isn’t Facebook. LinkedIn isn’t anything else but LinkedIn – where employers are looking for candidates; sales professionals look for leads; business owners look for everything under the sun, plus some more.

Just so you know, we aren’t going to tell you why you should be on LinkedIn. Many others have done a better job telling you that.

William Arruda of Forbes.com writes out 9 reasons why you should update your LinkedIn profile

Dr. Michael Woody of Fox Business writes on why you should have a LinkedIn profile in the first place.

If you are convinced, and if you have your LinkedIn all set up, upgrade yourself to where the real action is.

Start publishing.

Seriously, here are 4 strong reasons why you should publish on LinkedIn:

If you are in B2B, LinkedIn is where your customers are

Geoff of Wersm.com lists out facts about LinkedIn you should know: more than 300 million users and more than 3 billion businesses have a presence on LinkedIn. At least 35% of users access LinkedIn everyday and 39% of users pay for premium accounts on LinkedIn (Now, you know they are serious, eh?). One out of three professionals on the planet has a LinkedIn account, and there are more than 1.5 million LinkedIn groups out there.

Imagine your content reach with an audience like that. Need we tell you anything anymore?

If you aren’t there yet, now is a good time.

Push expertise. Not products and services

Mere presence on LinkedIn won’t do. Why, you ask? Because there are many more like you out there.

However, not everyone is publishing on LinkedIn’s publishing platform. By publishing, you set out to establish credibility. You gain exposure. You are on a path to teach. You are considered an expert.

That gets you a neat little following. Plus, it helps the world know that you know what you are talking about.

They now have a choice if they ever choose to do business with you.

Profiles look sexier

There’s a reason why resumes have fallen out of favor: they are boring, they can be cooked up, and those pieces of paper tell the world almost nothing about the awesome person that you are.

LinkedIn profiles are a lot more dynamic — endorsements and recommendations come in without you asking for them (ok, sometimes you do), certifications are verified, and your posts or articles really tell the world a story.

In short, your profile looks sexy. You can’t go wrong with a profile like that, can you?

Ok, It helps promote your business too

Just in case you were wondering, publishing on LinkedIn isn’t just a pretty face thing. It isn’t makeup.

If you have a website or if there are landing pages built for specific services that relate to the topic you’d want to publish on, you could always point to those pages.

Now, you’d not only publish but promote too (for all of us hungry marketers and business owners who do want something out of the effort we take).

So, tell me. Are you on LinkedIn? Do you publish?

Just for the record, visit our LinkedIn profile to see our own published posts.

And yes, our company page is here: Fetchprofits on LinkedIn

Img Credits: Daniel Iverson on Flickr

How to Use Your Free Linkedin Account, The Right Way

How to Use Your Free Linkedin Account, The Right Way

Linkedin is important for business. You’d be forgiven to spend all day on it, if you had to. According to Craig Smith of Expanded Ramblings, more than 332 million people use LinkedIn. More than 2 members sign up every second. Of those 332 million, 107 million are from the U.S and the social network spans 200 countries and territories with more than 187 million unique visitors. Over 40% of LinkedIn members check LinkedIn daily.

It is a social network, yet professional. Whenever we sign up for a social network, we tend to forget that the purpose is to connect and communicate. It has so much potential that many professionals found jobs, made connections, and social selling is the best way to get leads and make new profitable connections. If all you did was to have a LinkedIn account, you obviously aren’t getting much. The good news is that even with a basic, free account, you’d do a lot. Here are a few ideas and tips to get you started:

Make your profile professional

It’s a first step and it’s imperative that you get it right. Follow Cat Knarr’s Secrets to build a stunning LinkedIn profile on Huffington Post. Make sure those headlines pop.
Your profile should focus on what you can do for others. It’s about how you can solve problems for others. Apart from the fact that people would like to connect with you for having same professional interests, they’d also like to connect with you because you are the expert in what you do. At least, that’s the primary motive of your profile.

Do not leave out anything

Add your major work experiences over the years. However, everyone will. You will stand apart with add-ons like volunteer experience, seminars/workshops attended, additional certifications, workshops conducted, events organized etc. These things will give you an edge over others.

Do write your experiences but it “outward focused”. In the sense that you’d have to write it in a way where you are talking to your audience and about how you’d solve their problems with all that experience under your belt.
Keep it brief. Keep it smart.

Put up links, files, attachments, or anything else (visuals are highly recommended) to go into your profile.
Connect with any non-profit organizations and display them on your profile.
List out certifications, degrees, awards – LinkedIn allows you to put these up for a reason.

Connect with the right people

After you have made an account and added your profile, next logical step should be to connect with people. Find your old classmates, your colleagues and your acquaintances and connect with them. Recommend them and get recommended as often as you can for your skills and experience.

But that’s not all. Use a tool like Rapportive or Connect6 and find more people to connect with. The more people you know, the better it is for you.

Remember that “to connect” doesn’t mean you’d send a “connect request” and let it go. You’d have to take active interest in these people. Follow them everywhere, support their causes, like their published articles, subscribe to their newsletters, etc. You get the idea?

Communicate, Keep in touch, and rattle up old connections

  • Communicate with your contacts on regular basis. Wish them New Year, birthday and so on. It can take five minutes of your time, but you are extending a courtesy, which people never forget.
    They are more likely to stay in touch with you and talk to you, once you make a habit of communicating. More they talk to you; more are they likely to tell you about other opportunities they might have come across. But then,Don’t get so hung up on old connections that you don’t make any new ones.
  • Not all of your connects will be responsive or active. Just do your drill and keep yourself active. Work with others who are just as active ( or more) than you are.

Join Groups

Don’t just join groups for the sake of it. Make your presence felt. Ever saw the little bar to your right when you are signed into a group? It tells you where you stand. Are you just getting started? Are you making an impact?

You can do this by sharing beneficial information in form of videos or articles. Start a discussion or participate in one and appreciate others if they happen to share something useful, you are here to make contacts. Melonie Dodaro of Social Media Examiner puts it well:

“If you want to make it into the top contributors box, make it a point to post regularly and share content that’s relevant to the group. Take the time to read and engage thoughtfully with other posts and group members.”

Be visible

By following the steps aforementioned, you will be visible on the network. More visibility increases the chances of more people connecting with you. Your professional achievements, interests and additional activities are more likely to attract employers on the lookout for versatile employees willing to join their team.

Being visible in the right way, would mean:

  • Participating in LinkedIn groups but never trying to pitch or sell.
  • It’s all right to be opinionated but if you aren’t a Seth Godin or a Gary Vaynerchuck, it’s best to leave balanced comments. Strong opinions could sometimes lead to unforeseen flame wars and you really don’t want that on a network like LinkedIn.
  • If you already have access to LinkedIn Publishing Platform, make a plan to write regularly. If you don’t have access yet, apply t
    o get one.

Don’t bother people

Being visible does not mean you have to pester people into joining your professional network. If you have requested someone to add you you’re your professional network, be patient. They may not know you or remember you.

Moreover, if someone has refused to accept your request, do not keep sending the request. Be very professional about it. Time it. Send your reminders at regular – but well-spaced – intervals.
Professionalism is the key on LinkedIn. People are not looking to waste time with anyone they can’t connect, resonate with, or gain from.

Crisp and concise information, respectful communication, positive participation in groups should be enough to keep you visible and take your social quotient up by few notches.
How are you using LinkedIn for your business?