Pinterest is a new social network which allows users to post ('pin') groups of their favourite images from across the web on online 'pinboards'. After surpassing 10 million users in record time, the website is causing a stir in the online media world.
The website differs from other social networks such as Twitter and Facebook by being purely image led. Also, users are more likely to post things that they would like to do or have, rather than their current actions.
Currently, 84% of Pinterest users are female and the most popular topics are fashion, arts and crafts, interior design, special occasions and food. However, more and more marketers are tapping into the potential of Pinterest and realising that it can be used for marketing and promoting many more things than cakes, clothes and hairstyles.
Here are a few ideas of how we think the leisure industry can utilise Pinterest to engage members and enhance marketing strategies:
- Showcasing facilities and activities
Create boards with photos of the facilities you have available. This could be of gym equipment, pools, studios? anything you have on offer. If you have photos already uploaded on your website, it's very simple to 'pin' them to your 'pinboard' - it's done in a couple of clicks. Alternatively, you can find images on different websites and 'repin' them to your pinboards - Pinterest automatically credits the source of the image.
- Posting marketing material
Had a new poster, flyer or timetable designed? Post the artwork onto a pinboard and instantly share it with your Pinterest followers.
- Motivating members
Search fitness on Pinterest and thousands of images appear. Many of these are 'inspirational' - photos of people exercising with slogans such as 'no-one ever drowned in sweat'. Others are humorous, stating 'no matter how slow you go, you're still lapping everyone on the couch.' There are also workout guides and nutritious recipes represented in visually appealing ways. All of these are extra ways to give members tips and motivation and keep them interested in their fitness and nutrition.
- Increasing product sales
If you have a shop on site, use Pinterest to create pinboards of the products you have on offer, along with a caption stating the price. As Pinterest credits the source of the image, you can find pictures from across the web and don't need to worry about taking photos yourself. As Pinterest can be linked to Facebook and Twitter, you can promote your pinboards of products through a variety of social media channels.
- Keep it updated
As with Facebook and Twitter, Pinterest is most effective when your boards are kept regularly updated. Whether this is adding new boards, adding new pins to your existing boards or repinning other people's images, keeping your Pinterest profile is key for increasing your following and encouraging people to check it regularly. The beauty of Pinterest is that once you have set up your page it is extremely simple to add content.
Big Wave Media have set up a Pinterest page - www.pinterest.com/bigwavemedia
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