You have probably heard it: Pinterest recently cut off most SEO benefits by changing doFollow links to noFollow, as everyone expected – accidental (?) leftovers laid out. Nevertheless, good pinboards are also a valuable source for word of mouth and new website visitors. This is where the newsletter comes into play.
Still, the sudden arise of Pinterest from nothing in the U.S. numbs marketers. And apart from legal copyright issues, to which Pinterest offers webmasters an opt-out
Let’s take yesterday’s newsletter from Williams-Sonoma (as shown right above) to illustrate some measures and ideas:
- New followers:
In newsletters, link to your pinterest.com vanity URL. This highlights your presence there and thus acquires followers for your profile or for individual boards (“topics”). In addition, by comparing the clicks to maybe Facebook or Twitter, you get a feeling for how many subscribers use Pinterest. More followers mean more word of mouth and more advertising reach. With proper hyperlinking pinned images and within the corresponding description texts it also means more website traffic – directly by clicking through from Pinterest to your website, and indirectly by influencing your website’s search engine rankings. You could test if it works better to promote the general Pinterest channel of yours or specific boards. Or both – maybe in a dedicated Pinterest campaign?
- Share-with-your-network (SWYN):
Ask your subscribers to share interesting newsletters or specific content on their pinboard (“Pin it!”). The object of the recommendation could be the main visual of your email creative, like the “All-Clad French skillet set” in our example newsletter (B2C). (Although Williams-Sonoma missed that opportunity – shame on me, I made the button up. 😉 ) Or the cover of your new white paper (B2B). Or any other image or video that’s pin-worthy. Theoretically it’s even possible to automatically render a screenshot of your newsletter when sending it out, and offer a Pin for that. Note that Pins can also automatically be crossposted on Facebook and Twitter, if the user has integrated both and checks the appropriate options – even more reach!
The Pinterest share URL for your newsletter’s SWYN-function would be:http://pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=&media=&description=
Just exchange  with your image URL,  with your backlink the image will point to, and  with your proposal of a description text for the Pin (max. 500 characters). You should also include an URL here. Or prices.
(Tip: Use my little bit.ly/SWYNme tool for easy handling. Here is an example output: . And this is what the pinned result looks like.)
Ask subscribers to “like” and “repin” certain Pins, which you promote in newsletters. Likes will e.g. show up in their news stream und like section. Also this way, followers can also easily get aware of your content. Plus viewing Pins will drive Facebook Likes and Tweets as both social buttons are also offered.
- New subscribers:
As with Google Plus or Twitter, ways to promote your newsletter within the Pinterest network are limited. Your profile settings allow one clickable homepage URL in addition to your Facebook,Twitter, and RSS link. Furthermore, users can specify an “about” part. It is text-only and can hold up for about 550 characters. Maybe some nifty place for a shortlink to your email signup page and imprint. If applicable, email marketers could also offer a dedicated board for archived newsletter editions …
- User generated content:
You can use email to drive comments and discussions around you Pins on the one hand. On the other hand it might be useful to present users and their positive reviews as testimonals in your newsletters. (Legal aspects, like the right to informational self determination, excluded.) E.g. J. Jill once combined email with Facebook in such a way.
Pin my newsletter
Find more resources on integrating Pinterest with email here. And … stay tuned with my weekly newsletter. It will reach you on Friday. The content covers a recap of readworthy email marketing news. It surely will inspire you. Finally, what would this posting be worth if you could’t pin last week’s newsletter issue?