Danielle Burleson wears a lot of hats in Green Valley and Sahuarita. She sells advertising, she helps with marketing, she does some payroll and she is the social media expert as well. In other words, she is a model modern professional with a range of nuanced skills that evolve daily. She has a growth mindset.
This week Digital Sales Manager Jim Keyes was singing her praises for the way she had transformed her news organization’s Pinterest presence. The Sahaurita Sun had gone from a handful of Pinterest followers at the first of the year to more than 4,500 in just a couple months – all because Danielle used her insight and passion to develop an audience on that platform.
So what’s Pinterest and why should we care? Pinterest is a social media platform that allows users to bookmark visual images that appeal to them. Those images can be “pinned” to “boards” that are organized around specific interests – food, fashion, Arizona tourism, whatever. Users then follow boards that interest them, and pin stuff from those boards on their own boards, creating a viral effect.
It’s not a way to push links. That said, Danielle says to be sure to include your Web address in your pins so that readers know where to find you. That Web address is sure to bring more clicks to your website and that drives advertising and all that that brings. Using Pinterest is all about engagement and finding people where they are. Danielle says she thinks of Pinterest as a very intimate, family-friendly network. …
“It’s touching on peoples life, needs, wants and desires,” she said. “It’s bringing people into your home … and bettering your relationships and health. It’s your go-to for reliable information and its goal is to make you better then you are, more creative and smarter.” If you snoop around on Pinterest you’ll see what she means. There are thousands of boards for home improvement, exercise tips, healthier eating, etc.
She suggests you pin beyond your borders. It might seem odd for a local newspaper to have boards devoted to food all over the world, for example, but that may be of interest to local pinners. How would you know? Look for the analytics button under the gear button on your own page. That’s how I learned that people attracted to our hmbreview Pinterest page were most likely to be interested in the California coastline. Subsequently, I created a California coastline board. While I’m a proponent of local content on your website, I don’t see any harm in pushing the borders a bit on social media.
It’s also important to keep at it. You know this from your business Facebook page. The community withers if you don’t feed the beast. Danielle suggests 20 new pins or so a day. (That wouldn’t take but 10 minutes, by the way.)
Why bother with all this? Danielle isn’t getting commissions when people pin something she has pinned. There isn’t a direct financial reward for having 4,500 Pinterest followers.
The reason is this: We simply must dabble in social networks of all kinds to keep abreast of new business opportunities, to be a part of the community conversation and to find a 21st century audience. Young people are getting their news from Medium, Circa, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Nextdoor, Snapchat and on and on. We can’t just put out newspapers and wait for readers to come to us. We have to go to them as well.
“I think all social media is important,” Danielle says. “It all plays into each other.