pinterestNowadays, social media plays an important role in many company’s marketing campaigns. Although it doesn’t offer the same kind of return on investment as email marketing, social media can still be a useful tool for communicating with your customers and expanding the reach of your brand.

For a long time, the big players in the world of social media were Facebook and Twitter. Combined, the have over 1.5 billion active users worldwide. However, in the last few years another site has shown itself to be an important tool in the world of social media marketing: Pinterest. Although, currently, it only has a fraction of the users that Facebook and Twitter do, Pinterest marketing can generate huge sales.

Why Pinterest?

Marketing with Pinterest is a must if your audience is largely female. Of its 70 million users, 85% of them are female. The average Pinterest user also spends a lot of money online. 46% of online shoppers have bought through a Pinterest link and, according to a study by Shopify, orders that are driven by Pinterest are considerably larger that those generated by Facebook or Twitter. At $80 (about £50) per order, that’s even higher than the average sale from Google or Amazon. It’s a highly visual medium that seems to speak to online shoppers.

Social media marketing is most effective when it is integrated with your other marketing channels. Email marketing is the perfect partner for the majority of social networks, and Pinterest is no exception. Here are some of the ways that you can use Pinterest alongside your email marketing campaigns:

Include a Pinterest Button With Your Social Sharing

Pinterest is used by many as an online scrapbook. Any online media content that they like can be saved (‘pinned’) to their account, which can then be seen by other Pinterest users. By including a Pinterest social sharing button in your marketing emails, they could be seen by a lot more people than just your subscribers. Generally, a series of buttons, like these from Twinnings Tea, are featured at the bottom of a marketing email:

Include ‘Pin It’ Buttons

While social sharing buttons like these have been proven to be useful in expanding the reach of your marketing, there is nothing that is particularly motivating the reader to share. You can encourage more shares by making individual elements of your email ‘pin-able’. Users can that add the things that particularly interest them to their pinboard.

In the ‘Recipes of the Week’ newsletter from The Nest, a ‘Pin It’ button has been added to each element of the email:

Including these buttons benefits both you and your customers. The ‘Pin It’ buttons are a lot clearer than a social sharing button hidden at the bottom of an email, so it is likely to encourage more shares. They also help ensure that your customers don’t forget about something that interests them; they may not be interested in your email as a whole, but they might want to remember one element of it. This particular email also has a very visual design, which lends itself very well to Pinterest sharing.

Create Emails From Pins

Are you stuck for content for your next marketing email? Pinterest could inspire you. A number of companies have been using their most popular Pinterest content to create marketing emails. This email, from Made, is one such example:

Emails like this can both encourage sales and increase your number of Pinterest followers.

As a social network, Pinterest is unique and speaks to a distinct audience. If you’re not using Pinterest, you could be missing out on a significant potential customer base and huge sales. Using some of these techniques will help you tie Pinterest in with your current marketing efforts.