Everything You Need to Know about
Pinterest for Real Estate
Have you heard about Pinterest yet? It’s the biggest social media site to hit the web since Twitter, with site visits increasing 4,000% in just six months, landing them in the top 10 most visited social sites in November 2011.
So what is it, exactly? Pinterest is a way to categorize, save, and share images you find on the web. You sign up, create a profile, and start creating “pinboards” which you organize by category (such as “recipes” “places to travel” “ideas for the home” etc.). Any time you find an image on the web, you can “pin” it to your Pinterest pinboards using a button you install on your browser. The link to the original image is maintained in the pin, so you can always click back to its source. You can also pin images you have uploaded on your own. You can follow other pinners or their boards, and their pins show up on your Pinterest home page in real time. They can also follow you, see what you pin, and anyone can “repin” an image that they like.
There are some pretty juicy demographics associated with Pinterest. Most users are higher-income, educated women ages 25-54. They might have pinboards like “Projects for the Home” or “Dream Kitchen.”
So, should you drop everything to join Pinterest and create pinboards featuring images of all of your properties?
Probably not. But you might be able to use Pinterest to cultivate your online presence. Here are some “dos and don’ts”:
DO use Pinterest as another social media platform for ORGANIC interaction with your target audience:
People aren’t using this site to find a realtor. As with most social media sites, there’s an organic experience that people expect from interacting with others on the site. If you genuinely have an interest in creating pinboards that will both brand you AND match the feel of the site (for example: beautiful homes, local points of interest, or buyer and seller infographics), you’ll be seen favorably to those who might be looking for a realtor.
DON’T self-promote on Pinterest:
Just don’t. If you use the site only to promote yourself, you probably won’t gain many followers. Again, people aren’t using the site to find a realtor. They’re using it to find, see, and save images. If they are inspired by the images you pin, they’ll remember you down the road.
DON’T pin all of your properties on Pinterest:
Take a look around Pinterest, and you’ll see that part of its beauty is its, um, beauty. People are pinning evocative, aesthetic images. The kinda grainy shot you took on your cellphone of the front of your property? Not so much. Don’t pin it, it’s not why people are using the site.
DO pin beautiful or interesting images:
This can include interesting or unique shots of your properties, but you still might want to stay away from making these images look like real estate listings. You want people to repin your images and follow your boards, and you can’t do this without matching the aesthetic of the site. If you can do that, you’ll gain followers and build relationships that might come in handy down the road. You’ll also get great SEO if the images link to your website.
DO continue to brand yourself as a local expert:
Whether its real estate, home DIY projects, or the area you live in, if you can create boards that potential clients might find appealing, go for it.
Proceed with caution. If you’re genuinely interested in Pinterest for what it is, and you want to create and maintain relevant pinboards, go for it. If not, don’t bother.