It’s no secret that Pinterest is the latest and greatest in the realm of social media. In January 2012, Pinterest drove more referral traffic than Google +, LinkedIn, and YouTube combined. So what does this mean for your business’ social media strategy? Though Pinterest does not have dedicated “fan pages” like Facebook, or “company pages” like LinkedIn, it’s still a great way to develop your brand on online and connect with consumers in a unique and creative way.

Here are 5 tips for using Pinterest for business:

1. Stay True to You Brand: As a company, you should be well aware of your brand image and what that looks like. Make sure that your boards and pins relate to the kind of company you are and enhance that image. For example, a company that sells athletic shoes probably shouldn’t be pinning photos of stilettos and runway models.


2. Be Original – Since Pinterest is still sort of uncharted territory for companies, there’s opportunity to find new and original ways to engage your followers. Create contests and challenges, and take advantage of “group boards” and hash tags.


3. Mind Your Manners – Follow the Pinterest “Etiquette” – Be nice, credit your sources, avoid self-promotion, report objectionable content, tell them how to make Pinterest better. Avoid filling your boards with promotional content and advertising, instead be true to your community and repin and like other pins that suit your brand. This not only will make you a more interesting pinner, but also will increase your engagement with the entire Pinterest community.

4.  Drive Traffic to Your Site – When you create original pins, make sure that their “source” links back to your website. If you pin something that relates directly to your brand but isn’t on your website, include the URL in the pin description.

5.  Pin Quality – The appeal of Pinterest is being able to create a visual representation of your style and interests. Low quality pins that are pixilated or not lit nicely are much less likely to get repined. Keep in mind that pinterest is driven by visual creativity, so a nicely crafted, well designed or photographed pin will be much more popular than a low quality pin, even if it’s content and message are strong.