Pinterest. Pinning. Boards. Links.
Why all this interest in Pinterest?
Pinterest currently has around 72.8 million users, 85% or more of which are females with families in their mid-30′s. If you also look at the demographics of people who make decisions in a family, I would venture to guess you’d find that they were females, in their mid-30′s, with families! If that’s one of your target demographics in your real estate business, or you’d like to break into that demographic, you should be taking a closer look at Pinterest. Who else among real estate agents should be looking at Pinterest? Those agents with an interest in visual marketing, in storyboarding, in creating dream boards for their clients, in collage creation.
Where to begin?
First, you’ll have to decide whether you want a personal or a business account. Do you want to use or currently use Pinterest as a “normal” user? You may want to have a business account to be held separate. (Business accounts are also good because you be connected to your website, and thus ‘verified’ by Pinterest as a valid business.) Become known for specific keywords that people are searching for. Know Pinterest categories and keywords
Secondly, before you create your account, you’ll need to decide what keyword or keywords you want to be known for. Is it a specific area that you want to market to? Is there a Pinterest category or categories you especially want to concentrate on? Perhaps there are suggestions within Pinterest, words that closely appeal to you, that you want to adapt and make your own. Why is this step important? You’ll want to know where you’re going to be focusing your energy, but also what words you need to use in your descriptions as you categorize your pins. Once you have a list that you want to use, it’s time to build your account.
If you’re creating a personal account, you can visit Pinterest.com. If you’re creating a business account, however, you’ll need to visit business.Pinterest.com. Follow the prompts to create your account.
Congratulations! You’ve created a Pinterest account. Now what?
Before you start pinning willy-nilly, it’s best to start off organized. Fill out your profile information with as complete of information as possible, including any required real estate disclosures. To do so, click on your name in the top right-hand corner and then click on “Edit Profile.”
Be sure to fill everything out as completely as possible, including your website. (You’ll be sent an email to verify your website – check your spam filter just in case!)
Now, let’s create a Pinterest board. This could be of a community you farm, a neighborhood you work in, or a geographic area you want to claim. This could also be as specific as a listing – you decide.
To create a board, click on your name again in the upper right-hand corner. You should be offered a number of boxes with plus signs in them that include the text “Create a Board.” Click on that.
When creating a board, think of a name and description that includes the keywords you wrote down in the steps above. Then, choose the category that best befits the board. Is it Home Decor? Architecture? Design? Travel? Next, decide whether you want the board and pins to include a map. If you’re trying to ‘claim’ an area, you may want to explore using a map. Maps are also useful for identifying where a specific property is located, in case you’re creating a listing-specific board.
Once you’ve created a board, it’s time to pin!
You can create a pin in 1 of 3 ways – pinned from an image found on the web, from an image you’ve uploaded, or repinned from another person. Uploading an image is pretty self-explanatory. Choose to upload from a device and then choose the image you want to have pinned. A similar way to pin is from the web. If you’d like to pin an image from your website, then choose that website (or a website you can find your images on). Once you’ve selected your image, you’ll be greeted with this:
Pick the board you want. Include an accurate description about the image you’re pinning – is there an address? A type of architecture? Don’t forget to include any keywords that might apply. Finally, the most important step is including a website. If you are pinning any images of yours, you will want to make sure you send whomever clicks on your pin back to some place that you can capture leads, preferably your website. You can also flesh out your board with other people’s pins. Use the large search area at the top of the page in Pinterest to search for images that best fit your board. It’s bad practice to change the website of the pin you choose, but you can adjust the description to better fit your board if you’d like.
I’ve got the Pinterest basics. Now what?
You can keep creating specific boards, including ones that showcase areas of a home (bedrooms, bathrooms, yards, pools, etc.) and encompass community assets (golf courses, beaches, historical monuments and more). Some great examples of what you could use on Pinterest for real estate is found on Raj Qsar’s profile. Check it out here. Remember that you are selling a dream lifestyle for you target demographic – is it in cozy colonials? Sleek moderns? Angular architecture? Think about what else people would be searching out on Pinterest. (Hint: Popular searches on Pinterest are about redecoration.)
Another way to use Pinterest would be to create collaborative boards with clients. One of Pinterest’s features are its secret boards.
If you click on your name, then scroll all the way to the bottom, you’ll find Secret Boards. From there, you can invite other people to join you in pinning and creating. This would be a great way to be able to track and visualize a client’s home desires and better understand what it is they’re looking for in a home, in a community, in a life. It’s pretty much the online version of dream boarding!
Pinterest can be a valuable tool in your social media arsenal for your real estate business as long as: it fits the demographic you’re trying to target, you post on a consistent basis, and you remember to incorporate categories and keywords that you most want to be known for. Let me know how your pinning goes!