These days, pictures aren’t just worth a thousand words — they can potentially be worth thousands of dollars. Certain types of small business Pinterest users are discovering that displaying the right kinds of pictures on the popular site can help keep them in touch with their customers and help increase sales both on- and offline. While early small business Pinterest success was focused on food, fashion and design, today you’ll find a wide variety of small businesses using it.

The concept of the site is amazingly simple: Create various “boards” (as in, virtual bulletin boards) and pin photos to those boards that you discover on the internet (or that you upload from your computer).

While it started as a site for individuals to share “pins,” the site has evolved its service to include ways for businesses to create accounts and share boards with customers. You can set up an account and get tips for using a business account here.

Every business may use Pinterest in varying ways, but the unifying theme found among successful business users of Pinterest is the ability to find and display photos that are both visibly appealing and related specifically to something their customers associate with the company.

But what about companies not in food, fashion and interior design businesses? Is there a way for them to still successfully use Pinterest?

Yes, but with a caveat. Most examples of success still skew towards products and services that photograph well: Think travel, automotive and food, for example. But, as you’ll see below, even businesses that aren’t directly in “beauty photography” businesses have the ability to be creative in their creation of great Pinterest boards.

In coming months, we’ll be sharing specific tactics and approaches used by small businesses on Pinterest. Here are a few examples of small businesses that aren’t in the traditional sweet spot of Pinterest marketers who are, nevertheless, using Pinterest effectively.

Berry Insurance

Berry Insurance Map

A small business insurance company in New England, Berry Insurance, pins information about their company, as well as the areas they service. They want to bring their customers interests onto their boards with pins about events in Massachusetts and other New England locations. They even use the helpful map feature on Pinterest, which allows them to pin the location where the picture was taken. They also inform their customers with helpful hints, like when they need to call their insurance company.

Dirty Yoga Company

Dirty Yoga Home

As an online yoga company dedicated to helping the yogi in everyone, Dirty Yoga has a ton of room with what they pin to their account. Their focus lies in the tips and tricks of yoga movements and inspirational quotes to keep their customers motivated for the longevity of their workouts.

Barefoot Books

Barefoot Books Books

Book publishers like Barefoot Books like to pin content that they created. This children’s book author pins the artwork featured in their books, as well as fun crafts for kids. Their Pinterest is clearly dedicated to children and their love of books.

Eagles Nest Outfitters

ENO Heros

This Asheville, NC, business started with one product: a camping hammock. It has quickly grown into a lifestyle business with customers who love to send photos of them enjoying their hammock and various ancillary products the company has developed. While the products can be the same, the settings the product is used in tend to be beautiful mountaintops and inviting lakes. Our favorite Pinterest Board by ENO is one that is comprised of photos of military men and women using their products.

Nashville Wraps

Nashville Wraps Home

This eco-friendly box wrapping company based in Nashville focuses their efforts on pinning products and ideas they love that relate to their company. Nashville Wraps has an entire board dedicated to eco-friendly wrapping papers as well as ideas they love on how to wrap products. They relate their company to beauty and fun in gift wrapping.

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