How To Use Pinterest With Your Restaurant’s Mobile Marketing Campaign

Pinterest is a new social network that reached one million users faster than any other social media platform, despite it being an “invite only” network. The largest group who uses Pinterest is women ages 25-30 with a household income averaging around $100,000, which means if they see something they like, they’ll buy it. Converting Pinterest followers to customers will be very easy if you do it correctly.

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Pinterest's Home Page

What is Pinterest

PinterestCraftBoard How To Use Pinterest With Your Restaurants Mobile Marketing Campaign

Pinterest DIY Board

The best way to describe Pinterest is that it’s a picture-bookmarking website. On my Pinterest account, I have different “boards” of different interests. One board is various food and drink recipes and ideas, another DIY and crafts, a board with political cartoons and one filled with various artwork.

Each post, or pin, is simply a picture of the dish or craft and a short explanation. Each picture has a link associated with it, so if a follower were to want the recipe of the dish or detailed instructions on how to make the craft, all she would have to do is click on the picture and is directed to the original page.

How does it work

To start an account on Pinterest, you must first receive an invitation. You can request one from the Pinterest website, or ask one of your various Facebook friends who uses the site. I logged in with Facebook, it was extremely convenient and there were not a lot of forms to fill out.

Next, follow the instructions to set up your account. The most important to add is the “Pin It” button to your bookmarks toolbar. This enables you to easily pin anything to Pinterest while you’re surfing the web.

PinItButton How To Use Pinterest With Your Restaurants Mobile Marketing Campaign

Pin It Button

Pinterest also has a mobile application that is optimized for viewing on a phone. Viewing pins and re-pinning those posts is easy to do, so you don’t have to have a desktop computer to browse all of those recipes. Just pin them to your board and view later.

Once your account is set up, it’s time to start following people. Pinterest will have you automatically follow people based on your interests, but play around and really find those who spark your interest. As a restaurant, one group you should follow is Whole Foods Market Cooking.

Whole Foods Market Cooking Pinterest Page

Whole Foods really knows how to use Pinterest to its advantage. Its boards are all about food, healthy, indulgence, soups, breakfast foods, desserts, food as medicine and using food items for your body that you don’t eat (like sugar scrubs for your skin or using baking soda to remove a splinter).

Whole Foods rarely promotes its product, but rather shows its customers all the things they can do with the groceries they buy from its stores. This gives Whole Foods great interaction with its customers. The customers are being informed without hearing a sales pitch, only gentle encouragement to visit Whole Foods.

How your restaurant should use Pinterest

You should pin everything you post on your website, like photos from a special event or a new, popular or seasonal dish. Don’t be afraid to post recipes as well, they promote out-of-town customers to make your dishes they can’t experience on a regular basis. Keeping your secret dishes secret will encourage those customers to then make a special trip to your restaurant to sample those house-secrets as well as the original creation they made in their homes.

Pin ideas or techniques that are similar to your restaurant. If one of your famous dishes is nachos, pin about a restaurant a few states away that has a nacho volcano. Pinterest is more about being a community member and less of a competitor. You want to inform your customers and show them interesting things, not try to sell.

You don’t have to spend a lot of time on Pinterest, about three hours a week will suffice. Be careful, pinning is addicting and you can lose yourself among all of the cool things you find.

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    About the Author ()

    Sara is a Kent State University alumna with a degree in public relations.

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