Pinterest

Chances are, a number of you reading this email today are already fans of Pinterest. If so, I’m guessing you’ve been wondering how to harness the strengths of Pinterest to benefit your organization. Maybe you’re already experimenting with it.

Whether you’re a fan or not, there is reason to take note; Pinterest is growing explosively among women, and emerging as a leading source of traffic to websites, especially for e-commerce.

Consider the following July 2012 demographics*:

  • 68.2% of Pinterest users are women
  • The annual household income of Pinterest users exceeds $100,000
  • 50% of Pinterest users have children
  • Pinterest users spend an average of almost 16 minutes on the site per visit – versus 12.1 minutes for Facebook
  • Pinterest boasts an average of 1.36 million visitors every day
  • Pinterest is now driving more site referral traffic than LinkedIn, Google+ and YouTube combined—a stunning development for such a new property

The strategic opportunity for nonprofits, in summary, is this: Pinterest enables nonprofits to use one of their primary assets—compelling images—to drive significant traffic growth and revenue opportunity to their web properties.

How can you best take advantage of this opportunity? Here are some ideas:

  • Start with clear objectives and measure against them – as with any social media, it is relatively easy to launch a presence on Pinterest. Employing Pinterest in a strategic manner to achieve a particular objective is the more difficult, but profoundly more rewarding, path to take.
  • Create an organization of boards that defines your “products” and reflects your brand – your Pinterest boards, at the most basic level, should be organized in a way that helps people understand your “products”—the things they can do with you as a charity—in context. For instance, if you have a charitable catalog, images for that category might be organized on a board called “Unique Gifts.”
  • Deploy compelling imagery – strong, interesting images are essential to success on Pinterest. A nonprofit needs plenty of relevant, high-resolution images that will stir interest and a response from Pinterest users.
  • Add quality descriptions to your pins – together with your images, the quality and relevance of your copy is the key to driving traffic from Pinterest. It’s worth a dedicated effort to write compelling, concise titles and copy specifically for Pinterest, and not just rely on the default information that will be pulled when pinning an image.
  • Regularly engage with the community, especially supporters – as with any social media, successful growth on Pinterest is as much a function of regular engagement with the community as it is the quality and relevance of your content. Re-pin, write comments on others’ pins, like others, reach out to your supporters and reach out to key influencers in the space.

Lastly, go to Pinterest now and start following other charities. We especially like http://pinterest.com/charitywater/ and http://pinterest.com/operationsmile/. Which are your favorite? Let us know!

Happy pinning!

*Stats from http://theultralinx.com/2012/07/latest-pinterest-statistics-infographic.html