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A RETAILER'S FRIEND The illustrative nature of Pinterest is a great way to extend your storeÕs local allure into a nationwide attraction. ÒPinterest is a visual site, and most retailers are more visual than the average bear,Ó says Gene Marks, who runs a technical consulting firm in the Philadelphia area (genemarks.com). ÒRetailers deal with merchandise. They draw people into their stores with displays. Why not do the same with Pinterest?Ó HereÕs some good news: You donÕt have to spend lots of time and effort getting started. In fact, your first step is a pretty simple one: Post a ÒPin ItÓ button on your website. ÒA button will encourage visitors to ÔpinÕ your photos on Pinterest,Ó says Cynthia Sanchez, a social-media consultant in Fort Worth, Texas (ohsopinteresting.com). ÒYou donÕt even have to be an active Pinterest user.Ó ItÕs true that people can pin photos of your merchandise on their own initiative, but a Pin It button makes the task a one-step procedure. ÒAs business owners we know the best way to attract more customers is make a purchase easy. Why make visitors take extra steps?Ó asks Sanchez. And thereÕs another benefit to a button: It can encourage action from reluctant visitors. ÒIf there isnÕt a button, some visitors will feel uncomfortable pinning your photos,Ó cautions Sanchez. ÒThey may say to themselves, Ôthis retailer may not want me to use their photos elsewhere.ÕÓ You can also encourage pins by including a Òcall to actionÓ next to your Pin It button. This can be a statement such as ÒFeel free to share our photos on Pinterest.Ó This will encourage those visitors who hesitate to Pin, thinking you might not want them to take your photos off site. And hereÕs a bonus tip: You can find the code required for a Pin It button at business.pinterest.com. Look for the ÒPin It buttonÓ entry under ÒTools.Ó THE POWER OF PICTURES You donÕt have to rely on your customers to post photos of your merchandise. You Making Pinterest Work Here are even more tips to turn your Pinterest posts into profits: • Post unique photos. Keep an eye on your competition and avoid duplication. • Curate your posts. Don't Pin too many photos. Stop and ask: Will this picture add value? • Write tight captions. Always answer the question: Why is this photo important to you? • Crop your photos. Many people feel that tall pictures look better on Pinterest than wider ones. • Post your own. Don't post copyrighted pictures without permission. can get the ball rolling by posting on your own. But how can you make your pictures stand out against the thousands of offerings from other retailers? The secret is to make sure your images are what Sanchez calls Òpinnable.Ó That means using attractive colors and focusing on features that make your items stand out. Study the most attractive, eye-catching photos on the site. How can you present your merchandise in a similar way? Avoid a cluttered look that becomes even less attractive when your photos are reduced to the thumbnail size required by Pinterest. All else being equal, think Òless is more.Ó Close in on whatÕs really eyecatching about your merchandise. Avoid static pictures of items absent context, says Denver-based search-engine- B r i g ht e n U p t he C o u n t e r Your Best Source for Beauty, Barber & Spa Supplies Call us today for a current catalog 800.645.5118 46 December 2013 | beautystorebusiness.com | www.burmax.com