Savvy apartment marketers like yourself know that social media is going visual, and you’ve undoubtedly heard that image-heavy Pinterest is a great way to reach prospective residents and stay in front of current ones. (Considering Pinterest has 53 million monthly active users in the U.S., the odds are definitely in your favor.)
So you set up a Pinterest account and your company is pinning away— nice!
Now … the buzzkill: Your company’s boards are probably a bit boring.
OK, maybe “boring” is the wrong word. Predictable?
You tell me.
Lemme guess. You’ve got a board with pretty pictures of your property. A board for home decor ideas. (Decorating Small Spaces, anyone?) Maybe you’ve got a few boards devoted to specific spaces, like the kitchen or the living room. Boards for cleaning and organization tips. A board for recipes. A board for fitness tips.
Did I miss anything?
Don’t get me wrong. Those aren’t “bad” boards. Essentially they all fall under a lifestyle theme that’s completely in line with what apartment marketers would expect an apartment company to share on Pinterest. But you’re not limited to those boards, so why be just like your competitors?
Show some personality! Too often, businesses forget that Pinterest — just like any social media channel — is an opportunity to give people a peek behind the curtain, to let them see what inspires your brand.
Rethink your boards with the following suggestions, and your company is sure to have a more compelling Pinterest presence.
Have a look around Pinterest and you’d swear there’s a rule saying you must label a recipes board “Recipes.” But names like that are not only boring, they’re vague.
Are they recipes for breakfast? Comfort foods? Thirty-minute meals? Three-minute meals?
The easiest way to make that clear is a more specific board name. Just be sure to keep names 20 characters or less so they don’t get cut off.
And don’t forget to write board descriptions, which can convince people to follow your boards and help you show up in searches. (The same goes for pin descriptions.)
Want an example? Check out the description on Michael Kors’ “Jet Set” board.
Another brand that obviously understands the need for clarity is Nordstrom. Consider its popular “Bold Bright Wedding Ideas” board (which has a whopping 212,537 followers).
Not to be confused with the store’s boards for “Classic Wedding Ideas,” “Black & White Wedding Ideas,” “Beach Wedding Ideas,” and “Perfect Pastel Wedding Ideas.”
Nordstrom wisely realized that “Wedding Ideas” alone is way too general.
Ultimately, being more specific will help you come up with more interesting board names and themes.
Please refrain from giving your boards bland names.
I mean, wouldn’t you be more likely to follow a board called “It’s 5 O’Clock Somewhere” or “Cheers!” than a board called “Drinks” or “Cocktails”? (Yes, you would.)
And, again, don’t limit yourself to the same six or so boards that every other apartment company has! Take a look at these clever boards:
- “Woodland Creatures” by L.L. Bean
- “Daily Moment of Zen” by Jetsetter
- “Vintage Travel Posters” by the San Diego Airport
- “Tomboy” by J.Crew
I know, I know. These have nothing to do with apartments. However, they all have an important common thread: They’re relevant to the companies’ brand identities and their followers’ interests without being sales-y.
Plus, they present ongoing opportunities to pin content (that will keep engagement up).
Learn from their example.
Rep Your ‘Hood
If I could give one piece of advice for apartment marketers on Pinterest, I’d tell you to do more to showcase the cities and neighborhoods you’re in.
The neighborhood where someone lives is just as important as the apartment they’re living in (which goes back to appealing to your audience).
Also, by pinning, and thus promoting, local businesses, organizations and attractions, your company seems invested in your community and “plugged in” — two things that never look bad to residents and prospects.
When it comes to spotlighting local gems, Visit Denver is doing a great job promoting the Mile High City (which is fitting considering it’s Denver’s official visitors’ bureau).
Visit Denver has a nice mix of “useful” boards, like “Fun Places To Go In Denver” and “Eat Drink Denver,” and irreverent boards, like “colo-RAD-o” and “John Denver.”
Now bring it back to marketing apartments. For inspiration, consider StuartCo [client].
Dog-centric boards for several of our apartment clients have gotten lots of repins, actually. People love their pups— it’s that simple.
Please The Eye
Seeing as Pinterest is a visual social network, that suggestion probably seems obvious. But after looking around the Pinterverse(?), it’s clear that many businesses could benefit from a few minor tweaks to their boards. Remember…
There should never be less than five pins on a board. There’s nothing sadder than a board full of blanks.
Which brings me to my next point.
Use secret boards for staging. Have a great board idea, but haven’t had the chance to hunt down enough pins yet? Create a secret board and make it public once you’ve fleshed it out.
Have a strong cover pin. It’s one of the first things people see when they look at a board. Choose a high-quality image that best represents the board’s theme. Then move it up or down and position it just so for maximum effect. (Repositioning images can make a big impact. Try it!)
As you can see, my suggestions mainly focus on making your company’s boards more appealing. For a rundown of best practices, I recommend the Pinterest for Business guide.
Got any other suggestions for apartment marketers using Pinterest? I’d love to hear them! Feel free to share in the comments.