Pinterest, when used correctly, can drive valuable traffic to your website, promote your brand recognition, and increase conversions. In fact, according to HubSpot, as of January, 2012, Pinterest accounted for 3.6% of referral traffic. Shoppers referred by Pinterest are 10% more likely to make a purchase than visitors arriving from other social networks, and are likely to spend 10% more.

Read on to learn how your brand can cash in on the Pinterest phenomenon:

1. Include images on every page and blog post

Pinterest is image-based; if a page doesn’t have an image or photo on it, no one will be able to pin it, no matter how interesting the article is. And, the more interesting/thought-provoking/funny/unique/artistic your images are, the more likely people will pin and repin them, giving your site the exposure that you’re seeking.

2. Claim your brand or business name

Or if it’s already taken, find one that’s as close to it as possible. Because Pinterest is indexed by the search engines, the closer you can match your Pinterest URL to your brand’s name, the better for your business’ findability. It will also make it easier for other Pinners to find you just by searching in the on-site search box.

3. Optimize your account

Take advantage of Pinterest’s profile features; add links to your other social profiles and website. Complete your bio, using keywords in the description.

In the pin and pinboard descriptions, use hashtags so that they’re easily found, and include a website URL in pin descriptions where it makes sense. Don’t forget to include relevant keywords in the actual descriptions themselves. Some well-branded or optimized pinboards are ranking well in the search engine results pages. Read more…

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Thursday, August 2nd, 2012

The power of Twitter chats

If you don’t know about Twitter chats, or you have never participated in one, you’re missing out. Twitter chats are scheduled discussions that happen on a regular basis – usually weekly. They’re set up by a moderator and each chat usually has a loosely set topic to keep participants on track. Moderators sometimes ask a feature guest to participate; this is usually someone in the industry that people will jump at the chance to ask questions of.

If you’re new to Twitter chats, be prepared to be overwhelmed the first few times you attend. Depending on how popular a particular chat is, it can be virtually impossible to keep up with everything that’s being said. That’s exactly why most moderators will record the chat and make a transcript available shortly afterward.

Here’s why we love Twitter chats:

Make new connections

Twitter chats are the perfect way to network with others who are in your field or have similar interests. Read more…

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Monday, July 23rd, 2012

Better than Link Building

Is there really something better than link building? It should, after all, only be a piece of your inbound marketing strategy. The fact is you still need to generate backlinks and you need to maintain a consistent link velocity (the rate at which you acquire links). StepForth has recently moved from offering professional link building services to something we like to call Better than Link Building. It’s a change that we’re all pretty excited about..

Better than Link Building is a way to actively engage with your company’s target audience, build brand recognition, monitor and respond to your niche, all while building natural backlinks.

Here are the problems with traditional link building methods: Read more…