One of the fastest-growing social networks at the moment is Pinterest, an online visual "pinboard" that allows users to share and discover content related to their interests. Pinterest has experienced substantial growth since the moment it debuted in March of 2010. However, 2012 has turned out to be their year, as traffic has soared since January.

Pinterest now drives more traffic than YouTube, Google+ and LinkedIn combined. Buffer

If you're an entrepreneur, marketer or small business owner, do yourself a favor and join the site now.

Below, you'll find a quick guide to getting the most from Pinterest.

Why Pinterest Is Tailor-made For Online Marketing

There are a few different ways one can assess the potential of an online platform for marketing and advertising, but the most crucial metrics are user engagement and time on site.

Pinterest boasts some healthy statistics in both categories, as users spend nearly as much time browsing its pages as they do perusing videos on YouTube. Buffer

Pinterest has 10 million registered users and counting, many of whom are affluent and spend more than the average online shopper. More importantly, many are women who make purchasing decisions for their households.

Getting Started With Pinterest Branding

The general idea behind Pinterest is pretty simple. In a nutshell, users "pin" photos of things they find online to their personal cork-board, and others can "re-pin" those pics to their own.

In addition, users can create collections based on specific interests. It's basically a way of crowdsourcing content curation.

Whether you're an SMB or a major corporation, the first thing to do is sign up for an account and create a few collections of your products so that potential customers can find you more easily on the site.

Generating A Following

Once you're up and running with Pinterest, focus on driving traffic to your curated collections and your profile.

A big part of generating traffic will come down to traditional SEO and link building.

Start off by simply linking to your Pinterest profile from places like Facebook, Twitter, your primary website, associated blogs and any guest articles you write and publish on the web.

One particularly powerful way to get the most out of your Pinterest page is by posting an Instructographic, which tells visitors everything they need to know about your brand at a glance.

Pinterest-specific Traffic Tips

Funneling traffic from a variety of sources to your Pinterest profile is easy thanks to Pinterest's own social sharing widgets, which can be embedded in pages quickly and easily.

Remember to link back to your main page from Pinterest to create a synergistic circle of traffic. Once you've developed a bit of a following on Pinterest, a great way to explode views of your brand profile and product collections is with a simple lottery or giveaway promotion.

Encourage users to re-pin images of your goods for a chance to win a free prize.

Intelligent Pinning, Targeting Demos & More

The smart way to benefit from your internal Pinterest traffic is to do some good, old-fashioned keyword research.

Search for your products and note the keyword tags that users associate with your wares. Use the tags that real world users create to categorize your products when you upload and pin your content. In other words, think like a consumer and promote your content with the tags that normal people conjure up when they hear your brand name.

You can use the same tag research methods to see what other products interest your followers. Re-pin the uploads of similar vendors in your industry to create a positive feedback of cross-traffic.

The Wrap

  • Pinterest was a great idea that was just waiting for the right development team to make it a reality.
  • Unlike Facebook and other social media websites, Pinterest allows merchants to market without being intrusive insofar as privacy details and user data are concerned.
  • Users broadcast their interests freely, which creates a crowd-sourced profile of what's hot and allows advertisers to leverage the possibilities of viral marketing to explode their profiles online.
  • Getting started with Pinterest is quick and easy for any business, and can reap big dividends in a short period of time.

Don't Forget To Read: