By Gillian Armour, AICI CIP Launching a new fashion, image or style business is never easy or simple. No matter how much planning you've poured into creating your new company, chances are there is still more work to do. One of the most important things you'll need to do when launching your new image business brand is to engage in online marketing. Our industry is very visually oriented and utilizing Pinterest is a strong way to generate new leads and get traffic to your main site. At Fashion Stylist Institute it's our goal to prepare you for success in all your business endeavors and we hope this tip sheet inspires you. Here are the steps to take immediately to begin marketing on Pinterest:
Create your Pinterest account
The very first thing you'll need to do is to create a business account on Pinterest. Make sure that your display name is the same name of your company. Additionally, you should aim to use the same username you utilize on other social media sites. The more similarities you have between your sites, the better off you'll be. Image consultants historically use their own name for a consulting business name. This makes your brand memorable and sets you apart from all other consultants pinning away on Pinterest.
Fill out your Pinterest profile
Make sure that you don't skip filling out your profile. Some new consultants are in such a hurry that they don't want to waste time with this. Keep in mind, however, that many people will check out what your business has to say about itself on Pinterest. In addition to sharing a few words about yourself, you'll need to create an interesting tagline (for example: “I help women find vintage styles for their wardrobe”) and upload a professional profile picture or a custom logo.
Create at least 10 boards
You should ideally create at least 10 boards to start off with, though many consultants do create more. When you create a board on Pinterest, you'll be able to sort items that you want to "pin" into these boards. Items that you pin should be related to your business, your service and any advice you want to pass on. When someone is searching for image advice, a fashion photo or style theme and discovers your boards, they'll have the chance to follow you and receive any future updates from you in their news feed. Creating a variety of boards will ensure that you get new followers on a regular basis. Just be sure that each board you title pertains to your fashion business since you want to attract viewers who can relate to your subject matter.
Find appropriate pins
Search on Pinterest for images that you can pin onto your boards. If you do closet makeovers, for example, create boards that have to do with organization, shopping or storage. You can then pin related images to these boards. The person who originally pinned the image will receive a notification and may choose to follow you, as well.
Create images for your website
If your goal is to draw new visitors to your own website, you'll need to create "pinnable" images for your site. A pinnable image is any picture that someone can easily share to Pinterest. Ideally, you should take images of makeovers (before and afters), your studio location or your products and add a label or quote to them. You can do this easily using photo-altering software on your phone or computer. You could also label the picture with the name of a relevant article it links to, the name of the service depicted in the image or even your tag line.
Pin items from your website
You might also consider the images you already use on your website. Pin each of these to Pinterest. Then the picture will automatically include a link to your website, so anytime someone shares the image, their friends will have the chance to click on your link. Make sure that when you pin an image, you include a brief description utilizing SEO-friendly keywords such as “image consulting” or “fashion makeover.” When people search for images (or keywords) on Pinterest, your graphics could pop up.
Share your posts on social media
Anytime you pin to Pinterest, make sure you let your social media followers know. This will give you even more of an audience when it comes to seeing your pins. Remember that the benefit of having someone pin one of your images is that their friends and followers will see the image, too. Even if the person who shared it doesn't become a client, chances are that one of their friends might or may even know someone in the market for your help.
Like all social media marketing, Pinterest marketing can take time. Fortunately, with a bit of effort, planning and dedication, you'll receive new website traffic and customer visits from the images that you share online and your fashion, image or style consulting business will grow as a result.
If you would like further training Fashion Stylist Institute offers certification courses in fashion, image, and style disciplines.