Social Media Marketing Strategy Guide to Pinterest, Medium and YouTube
Spending time on social media has become a daily ritual for many people today. It’s how they get their news, from global happenings to finding out that their old friend from middle school got engaged. Within this range of resources available on social media are insights from small businesses like yours. It’s crucial to implement social media marketing into your business’s daily to-do list in order to build and engage with a community of people and influencers that could be interested in your products and services.
In a previous article, social media marketing 101 guide, we explained the most widely-used channels, i.e., Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn. In this article, you will find our social media marketing strategy for other popular channels: Pinterest, Medium, and YouTube. We’ll explain what each one is, what kinds of businesses could benefit from having a presence on them, and how to apply them to your social media plan.
General overview: Pinterest is a social platform unlike anything else you’ve seen on the Web. It’s a visual discovery tool that allows you to gather ideas to inspire your own projects. These ideas can fall under any topic ranging from recipes to arts and crafts, weddings to photography, apparel to design, and so much more. This is the place to go next time you have a creative block, as the options are nearly endless. As a user, you can browse and share ideas, known as Pins. Then, collect and categorize the Pins on boards to share with the public, as well as come back to and modify whenever you feel like it. This is how users interact with each other, by saving and commenting on each others’ Pins, as well as following boards and specific profiles on the platform. The whole concept behind Pinterest is to connect people based on things they find interesting - a much different notion from other social platforms you’ve come across.
Business types that should take advantage of this: It’s quite apparent that Pinterest serves a specific community of creators and visionaries. This means that it’s not for everyone, or every business. If you know that your business has eye-catching, innovative, or beautiful products to share, or services that are quickly summarized in infographics, then this platform is for you - especially if you’re in the creative industry. That’s because each Pin is linkable, allowing you to link back to your website. By doing so, Pinterest can be used to increase awareness about your business, and to drive more leads and sales.
Dominating content form: Pins and Boards, as explained in depth below, are the main focuses of Pinterest. You use them to categorize your images in order to communicate your visions to the wide-ranging audience found on Pinterest. Everything else on the platform just surrounds these two things.
People (profiles): Users create accounts on Pinterest that allow them to host Pins and Boards. This also means that users can follow each other or businesses to receive updates about their ideas. When users follow someone, they will automatically follow all of that person’s or brand’s Boards.
Pins: These are individual ideas in the form of images, videos, GIFs, or infographics which you will upload yourself or find on Pinterest, then share with attached links - typically to your website’s homepage or product page. Pins can be of your products, tips and tutorials of your services, blog posts, infographics, DIY ideas, or anything else that looks good visually.
Repins: This is simply when you save a Pin from another user or brand to one of your own boards.
Boards: Pins that you upload yourself or Repins that you take from others must be attached to boards. These are essentially folders that house a specific topic or theme - like branding and design, tutorials, infographics, etc. You can modify them however you like, as well as make them private (‘secret boards’) or public ones. If your plan is to use the ideas in-house, then keep them private. However, you’ll want your pins to be public if your plan is to promote your products and services. A good Pinterest tip for designers is to include your sources of inspiration in your boards, giving visitors a better understanding of you and your interests.
Comments: Aside from Repinning other users content or following them, the other way to reach out is to comment on users’ or brands’ Pins to express your opinions about them or ask questions if you wish.
Pinterest business account: The main advantage of a business page is access to analytics. This will allow you to refine your strategy through measuring Pin performance and seeing important data on traffic from your website and other social channels. Then there are Rich Pins, which follow the same concept as regular pins, but provide more information about the Pins and provoke better engagement. There are four types: Product Pins, Recipe Pins, Article Pins, and App Pins. Plus, if you’re considering advertising on Pinterest you will need a business account. So, if you already have a personal account, you can easily convert it to a business one. And if you don’t, it will only take you a few seconds to sign up. The best part of it all: It’s completely free! If you’re looking for more information, check out our helpful guide about Pinterest business accounts, or for some inspiration, take a look at Wix’s Pinterest account.
How to apply this to your business’ social media plan: Set up a Pinterest business account right away. The more effort you put into your page, the more likely you are to foster a community, increase brand awareness, and drive traffic to your website. Here’s what you can do to make that happen:
What to post: For starters, you can post beautiful images surrounding your products and services in order to promote them. Then, think on a broader perspective about your industry. Is there anything that you can share that will interest people in a way that’s related to your brand? For example, if you own a beauty salon, you don’t just need to post your hair styles and cosmetic products for sale. You can also share hair styling tips or other beauty hacks. And if you have a blog, you can share links to your blog posts with corresponding images. Get creative and think big here. Your only limits: Keeping your boards stylish, lively, and relatable, and linking your Pins back to your website.
How often to post: You should Pin regularly and consistently to stay active on the platform. Although there is no exact number of times recommended, note that each post with a link to your website will draw more traffic - which means more leads, sales, and better business overall.
Why and how to advertise: As it’s already a platform for browsing items and ideas, it’s only natural that you’re here to sell your products. So, consider taking advantage of Pinterest Ads. This will help you reach more people in multiple ways, like building awareness, bringing more visitors to your website, and upping your sales. Once you create your business account, you can get started with promoting your brand on Pinterest.
General overview: Back in 2012, the co-founder and former CEO of Twitter wanted to offer a place for individuals to express their ideas and opinions through a form of content longer than the (then) 140-character limit of a tweet. And so, Medium was born. Commonly perceived as a blog host, Medium is a platform where people from all backgrounds publish content about their thoughts, perspectives, and personal experiences. As a reader, you’ll be spoilt for content on both your homepage and delivered to your email’s inbox. This all starts when you sign up and create an account of your own, where you’re asked what topics bring you joy and useful knowledge - allowing you to have the most personalized experience possible. As you follow other users and publications and read articles across various topics, Medium gets smarter and begins to recommend similar content for you.
On the other side, as a writer, you’re graced with the ability to write for yourself or for a publication, and establish a fanbase surrounding your chosen topics and personal expressions. Essentially, Medium is the place to take ownership of your content.
Business types that should take advantage of this: Any business that has considered blogging should also consider having a presence on Medium. If you have knowledge that you feel will be useful to share with the world, if you want to establish your brand as an expert in your field, give insights about your company, or explain more about the benefits of your products and services, then this platform is for you.
Dominating content form: Medium consists of stories, which are the main content form. Your focus on this social platform is to read and share stories. We’ll go into more detail on how to go about that below.
Publish stories: Stories are an extension to the concept of blogging. However, unlike the way that some perceive blog publications, Medium is not the place to share content for the purpose of strictly driving traffic back to your website. Instead, you should ask yourself: ‘How is this content significant and useful to my intended audience?’ And, ‘Am I sharing information and perspectives that they probably won’t be able to find anywhere else?’ If you can assure yourself with a giant ‘Yes!’ in response to both of these questions, then definitely create and publish those stories on Medium. If you aren’t sure where to begin, consider writing about your personal experiences when you started your business - the gritty details of the dramatic events that unfolded and brought you to where you are today. Another example: Discuss what you’ve learned from a failure or triumph. You can also explore the existing content on Medium to get a feel for what is being published out there, and then add in your own style. This is an opportunity to be creative and share your insights.
Comments, Highlights, and Claps: There are several ways to engage on Medium outside of posting stories. You can comment on different articles to give writers positive feedback or express your opinions when helpful, useful, or simply just complementary. You can also highlight lines, sections and paragraphs in stories that you enjoy - the writers will receive a notification about this. The top highlights (highlighted sections repeated by multiple people) show up when any viewer visits that article. The last option is “Claps,” which are similar to “likes” on other social media platforms. However, the main difference is that you’re able to “clap” up to 50 times on one post. Comments, highlights, and claps are all opportunities to engage with the community on Medium and bring more interest to your own account and stories.
Medium publication: Separate from an individual writer’s account is a publication. First you’ll need to create a writer account, then you’re able to build a publication. On your publication, you can customize the layout, post articles, add writers and editors, and share a link to your website, among many other easy-to-integrate personalization features. These features are reminiscent of a blog, but through Medium’s platform. Like a blog, you can create a newsletter and your content will also appear in search engine results. Unlike a blog, your content shared on Medium appears in more places than just your publication. When users follow related topics, there’s a chance that your stories will appear on their homepage and potentially in Medium’s own newsletters. Interested users will then be able to access your publication via a link from your stories. If you’re looking for inspiration to get started with your own publication, check out Wix on Medium.
Medium membership: Medium is certainly a place for exploring inspiring, thought-provoking content. The only potential barrier to that experience is a limit on the number of stories you can write and read. For publishing, you can only post three times per month. For reading, the restrictions depend on the type of content you are browsing because of the Partner Program that pays writers for their exceptional work. To overcome these barriers, you can purchase a membership on Medium for a few dollars per month. There you will also receive access to more quality content with no sponsored ads and be able to post an unlimited number of stories per month.
How to apply this to your business’ social media plan: Create a writer account with your company’s name and your own publication. You can share content via writers at your company, from your company writer account, or both if you wish. Submit these stories to the publication so that they appear in both places. And then, follow the steps below to optimize your presence on the platform.
What to post: As mentioned above, you should post stories that you think will interest your audience. For example, we’ve published about social media content ideas that worked for us, font pairing suggestions from our designers, and several trends to look out for in the upcoming year (social media, SEO, marketing, etc.), among many other themes.
How often to post stories: You can post as often or as rarely as you would like, but you should note that Medium rewards writers and publications who post frequently and consistently. We publish around three times per week, but you can also post once or even five times a week. Decide on a number that you feel confident you can keep up consistently with.
Why and how to advertise: The CEO of Medium, Ev Williams, mentioned in an article that the company’s goal is to “help people pay attention to the most valuable stuff first and to have the best ideas win.” For that reason alone, it’s not possible to promote your content on Medium. Instead, if you want your content to be seen, you’ll need to get creative. This can be everything from posting content with the same tags and topics frequently, promoting stories through other social media channels like Facebook and Twitter, and creating an introductory article (here’s our introduction to Wix’s Medium publication for reference).
Already have a blog? No problem. Even you can benefit from the platform. Just because you currently create and actively share content on a blog of your own, doesn’t mean that the resources available to you here are not relevant. In fact, they are more than relevant they are highly advantageous. Think of Medium as yet another outlet to promote your work. You can post unique content, or import your blog posts to either your personal account or publication to increase the number of eyes on them. It’s like sharing your posts to Facebook and Twitter, but with many more features directed towards a community of avid readers and writers.
General overview: YouTube is a video-hosting platform, that - fun fact! - was actually founded by three former employees of PayPal. For browsers, it’s a place to view videos from all different categories: tutorials for workout classes, music videos, vlogs, comedy clips, product promotions, mini episodes, webinars and more. Browsers can like, share, and comment on content that they watch. For a company, it’s an opportunity to promote your brand through video, as more and more users prefer to consume this form of content these days. It's also a great way to monetize your video content.
Business types that should take advantage of this: Any business can, and should, produce and upload video content. That’s because many video marketing statistics will tell you that it’s worth your time, and that it’s the way of the future. For example, the fact that video content can contribute to a 157% increase in organic traffic for your website. So whether you’re a professional videographer or not, consider creating content for the platform. Below, we’ll mention some easy ways to go about this.
Dominating content form: The one and only content form of YouTube is videos. These can be as long or as short as you wish, depending on whether or not you have a verified account (more on this below). There are also several places to display your videos on the platform which we will discuss in the following section.
Videos: These are the reason people come to YouTube. Each video uploaded has a 15 minute limit unless you have a verified account.
Channels: Before you upload a video, you will need to create your own YouTube channel. This is the homepage of your account. Everyone that’s a member can create one, and subscribe to each other's to receive updates on their latest video releases. A channel includes videos, playlists, a community section, and about section (to put a description and link to your other social channels). You can also customize your channel by adding in themed sections (popular uploads, playlists, etc.) and channel art (like a cover photo).
Playlists: Playlists are collections of video content that play in consecutive order. When creating one, you can decide to make it public or private. You can also add in your own videos or choose from others available on the platform.
Comments, likes, shares: Users can interact with each other’s video content by commenting, liking (and disliking), and sharing through other social channels. Likes in particular are one way to track a video’s virality - one of the main goals of many YouTubers.
Brand Accounts: If you want to have multiple managers and owners of your YouTube channel, create a Brand Account with Google. Since YouTube is a subsidiary of Google, when you’re logged into your Google account, you’ll also be logged into your YouTube account. However, you don’t need a brand account if you prefer to just share login credentials with everyone on your team - which is usually preferred for smaller teams.
YouTube for your business: The first step to creating a YouTube account for your business is to sign up to the platform. A business account is not different from a personal account by the platform’s standards, yet you can customize it and make it look extra professional. To do so, include things like your business’s name for the channel, a logo as your profile image, a professional cover photo, and an about section containing links to your website and other active social media channels. You’ll also want to verify your account to look professional on the platform and be able to upload videos that are longer than 15 minutes if you wish. For more details about this, you can browse Wix’s YouTube channel for inspiration here.
How to apply this to your business’ social media plan: Upload your own videos to your YouTube channel. Then, if you want to become a successful YouTuber, you can promote your content through email marketing, engaging with your community by responding to their notifications and commenting on their videos. You’ll also want to share your videos across your other social media channels, like Facebook and Twitter. If you have Wix Video, you can effortlessly sync your video content directly from YouTube onto your website. And lastly, we’ve compiled this list of several other ways to gain more YouTube subscribers.
What to post: You can share various types of content in the form of video, from behind the scenes footage to product releases, vlog posts, company promotion videos, webinars, and more. To create your own videos as a Wix user, you can easily do so with the Video Maker in your website’s user dashboard (a part of Ascend by Wix, your complete business solution). Add in your media and text, customize your design, and a video is generated for you within seconds.
How often to post: Depending on what type of business you have and how much time you have, you may find yourself uploading content once a week or once a month. There is no ‘norm’ for uploading content, however, like all other social platforms, consistency is key to keeping your subscribers in the loop.
Why and how to advertise: Advertising on YouTube will allow your content to be seen by more people when they are searching or watching videos. You also only have to pay when users show interest. This form of advertising is called TrueView ads, and there are several kinds: Bumper ads (6 second mobile ads before the main video), TrueView in-stream ads (before watching the main video), and TrueView discovery ads (in search results). You can find everything you need to know about advertising on YouTube here.
By Jennifer Kaplan