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Should Writers Also Be Pinners? Find Out What the Experts Say

Penned by Don Sturgill

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Should Writers also be Pinners? Find Out What the Experts Say by @pinterestbiz

Should a writer care about Pinterest, or would pinning time be better invested in other social media sites?

I asked that question to four writing and publishing professionals recently, and I received the perfect answer: “It all depends.”

That, my friends, is often the wisest advice possible.

Here’s why:

When I was beating the street on Nashville’s Music Row, trying to get a publisher excited about my songs, the writer who was getting the most play time and attention was often referred to as “The flavor of the week.”

Nashville can be fickle.

Isn’t it the same on the internet? With so many social media sites competing for your attention, a writer must be choosy. And the “sure bet” last month can quickly become this month’s “has been.”

First, quotes from the experts

Jennifer Evans Cario

She is president of SugarSpun Marketing and she wrote the book on Pinterest. Her recently released Pinterest Marketing: An Hour a Day offers real life, down in the trenches marketing savvy.

The first step, says Jennifer, is to know exactly what you hope to accomplish:

What it boils down to is the need to be familiar with enough social media channels to make an intelligent decision about which ones are best suited to the goals you’ve set and to the tactics needed to reach those goals.

Ann Smarty

Ann Smarty wears more hats than a team of construction workers. She is community and brand manager at Internet Marketing Ninja, runs her own SEO consulting service, owns the My Blog Guest website for guest blogging, is co-founder of Viral Content Buzz, and her articles show up just about everywhere you look on the internet. Ann, simply put, is absolutely amazing.

For Ann, Pinterest is an excellent spot for interaction with readers – and Ann is all about the social part of social media:

People write content, people rank in search, and people acquire friends on social media. You don’t need to sell anything … selling is the least effective social media marketing strategy. Building an active following is accomplished by interacting with real people and by treating them like real people, not like numbers!

Demian Farnworth

Demian is one talented writer. He is on staff at Copyblogger, and he’s owner of The CopyBot site. Demian isn’t using Pinterest for his own work, right now, but sees how the site can be valuable for those writers who produce primarily visual content (a cartooner, for instance).

Says Demian,

Pinterest is just such a visual field that it attracts the DIYers, fashion, and photo people—who may not be your target audience.

Andrew Melchior

Andrew is the co-founder and vice president of AvaLaunch Media. He is a regular conference speaker, and he’s a guy with a well-rounded feel for internet marketing best practices. Andrew says Pinterest has become too big to ignore:

I think you really do need to consider Pinterest, given the amount of traffic Pinterest is currently sending. As a writer, though, you really need to adjust your tactics to include visual elements, if you wish to succeed with Pinterest.

What do the statistics say?

This discussion first came about in a conversation centered on how to get the word out about what has become the largest Independence Day fireworks display west of the Mississippi – the Melaleuca Freedom Celebration.

Could a fireworks show in little Idaho Falls, Idaho – no matter how spectacular – gain exposure on Pinterest?

Do the search. Pinterest loves fireworks.

How many people are using Pinterest, and what are the demographics? The most current (2012) stats I could find paint an interesting picture:

  • There are now over 12 million Pinterest users in the United States alone
  • Almost a third of those users have a household income of over $100,000 per year
  • Pinterest visits increased 15-fold between September 2011 and September 2012
  • Users in the USA spend almost an hour and a half on Pinterest each month
  • About 69% of Pinterest users have purchased, or wanted to purchase, an item they found there

And even if you don’t happen to share age and gender with the majority of Pinterest users (females between the ages of 25 and 54), would you like to reach them with your message?

I thought so.

Expert tips on how a writer can benefit from Pinterest

Because a number of the suggestions overlapped and intertwined, I’m going to list the basic principles here without trying to attribute each tip to a specific contributor.

Here is the distillation – powerful advice about how to build a presence on Pinterest.

  • Get active on community boards – a quick way to massive exposure. Search on “Pinterest community boards for writers,” however, and you won’t find many writer-focused communities built just yet. Hmmm …
  • Women greatly outnumber men on Pinterest right now. If you’re a guy, you may not feel you can communicate well with the female gender. There’s no time better than the present to learn, though. After all, women aren’t a specialty market—women are the market in a big, big way.
  • Writers put in plenty of research time. Why not archive your sources on Pinterest? Wouldn’t that make a cool add-on feature for your new book?
  • Are you searching for ideas, or do you want to know more about a subject? Pinterest is not only a good place to store your research … it is an excellent resource for doing research.
  • The more you pin and re-pin the work of others, the more you will find others sharing your pins. It’s a simple fact you don’t want to forget: Kindness begats kindness.
  • Use Repinly to track and re-pin trending items of interest. It is a valuable tool.
  • Determine your most successful pins and identify your champions by using analytics tools for Pinterest. Check this article for three options.
  • Create boards to feature your own work, but don’t forget to acknowledge other authors as well. Don’t try to monopolize the community; join it.
  • And remember: Pinterest is a visually-oriented society. Make sure your pins include a worthy photo or graphic. Show and tell.

That’s it, folks. Go forth and Pin … and should you run into trouble, leave a comment here for one of our experts. They know their success is largely due to the amount of help they have given others.

About the author:

Don Sturgill is interested in just about everything. He is a friend of entrepreneurs, an untamed believer, and author of The Roadmap To Freedom: Dream Into It.

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2 Responses to Should Writers Also Be Pinners? Find Out What the Experts Say

  1. byPeterThomas says:

    I really enjoyed the article and I am excited about the idea of the visual content on an as needed basis!

    • pinnable says:

      Approved

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