Winning by Pinning: the Ultimate Guide to Pinterest – Updated for 2020
Self-proclaimed as the world’s catalogue of ideas, Pinterest is the ultimate visual search engine. And it should be treated as such.
For example, when you type into Google “Bridal gowns 2017” you are directed to a page of websites usually containing those keywords in the title.
But what if you only want images?
So you then have to click the images button and wait to be redirected to a page containing photos.
It’s a two-step process which doesn’t sound like much but as a previous bride to be, Pinterest was the only search engine I used for visuals.
It’s an enticing wonderland of visual imagery for everything from blogs to products, recipes to tips and all things travel.
Pinterest has become a visual board representative of who we are and what we believe in.
In short yes, however, there is a very defined demographic that Pinterest appeals to more than others. Rest assured, if you follow our tips anyone can shine on this platform but let’s see if you fit into any of these common Pinterest demographics.
The soon to be bride:
There is no stopping this tenacious and driven female. She is fierce, determined and very clear of her goals. The soon to be bride uses Pinterest as a visual board for designing the wedding of her dreams.
The master of words. Bloggers will use Pinterest to reach the masses – 175 million to be exact. Stunning images will have you hooked if you’re not already sold on the catchy title!
The DIY expert:
Why buy when you can create? And creating is so easy when you’re under the guidance of a DIY expert. These individuals will teach you everything from how to make your own body cream, organic household cleaner or soy candles.
The design gurus:
Everyone from architects to carpenters, or interior designers – these professionals shine on Pinterest. Their entire business is visual and you will be inspired to design your next dream space by them!
The crafty creative:
This nifty individual will inspire you to your very core. One look through a craft Pinterest board and you will be thinking up your next artsy project. Fancy making a new personalised bookmark, wedding invitations or a bed headboard. The world’s your oyster on Pinterest!
She represents wanderlust and has an undying hunger for wandering the globe. A jet setter who catches planes, not feelings. This independent woman loves the world more than anything else in this world and is committed to ticking off the destinations on her bucket list.
Of course, the traveller is every bit just as likely to be a man but the statistics are astonishing with a massive 80% of Pinterest users being female!
Word of warning: avoid Pinterest when hungry! Nothing awakens the beast of an appetite quicker than triple chocolate mud cake or a quick and easy butter chicken. You will quickly feel like a 5-star Michelin chef browsing through a foodies board. Their pins tend to be easy to read, very informative and packed full of step by step images.
So what’s next on the menu?
Now that you understand who frequents Pinterest, why they use the platform and their posting habits you should have an idea of who you want to target and an overall goal.
It can be anything from increasing newsletter sign ups to doubling your weekly sales. It really all depends on your industry and how the direction your business is currently travelling in. Maybe your sales are going well but the blog section of your website sounds like the crickets at dusk.
Everyone has a different goal and identifying yours can help keep your eye on the prize!
As you go through I suggest you take down notes on how you will implement each strategy to your own Pinterest profile. So grab a notebook & a pen (don’t forget that glass of wine), I’m going to take you through a list of handy tips to help you win at Pinterest.
Now let’s run through a few key strategies!
1. Make Sure You Are Using a Business Account
Here I will run through how to optimise your business profile so if you don’t already have one, create one here.
A business profile will provide you with the analytics you need to you understand what is and isn’t working for your profile.
You can view your stats by clicking the analytics button to the right of the Pinterest logo situated on the left-hand side of your screen.
Click overview. This where you will find daily vs monthly viewers as well as the number of impressions on your top 5 pins.
Keep an eye out on what actually constitutes your most popular pin – keep watching weekly to see if there is a trend. Say, for example, I am a blogger and share pins on topics such as “how to blog”, “blog marketing strategies” and the occasional “dinner recipe” but my most viewed pins are the ones based on marketing strategies for bloggers – that’s what I need to run with.
The profile option in the drop down menu under analytics takes you further into your statistics by providing information specific to your profile impressions, website clicks and pin stats.
Lastly, in the ‘people you reach’ section of your analytics you will get a deeper insight into your demographics age, gender, location and interests.
Now you can use all of this information to help you better understand your audience and tailor your pins to suit their preferences.
I’ll reiterate again, get yourself a Pinterest business profile!
Once you have signed up or converted over to a business profile let’s start optimising.
Start with a professional, in focus, high-definition profile picture. A logo is great but if you’re a one person show and the business is all about you, fittingly your photo should be a friendly headshot.
I’m going to mention the words ‘SEO keywords‘ a few times coming up and it begins with the title of your profile picture.
When it comes to saving your image to your computer instead of naming it “profile picture” save it under “business name + industry keyword”
When editing your profile description ensure that it is also SEO friendly. Feature keywords related to your industry. Remember at the start of this article I touched on how Pinterest is essentially a search engine? Featuring keywords will increase your searchability on this platform.
2. Use Facebook to Grow Your Pinterest Following
Join a Facebook group related to your niche or one focused on Pinterest growth and start engaging.
Finding groups related to your niche on Facebook can be pretty easy, simply click on the ‘Groups’ button and filter the results using the industry tabs at the top of the page.
Facebook will then show you a collection of suggested groups which you can go through and follow.
I’m going to be real honest here, all these Pinterest tips and tricks are all kinds of awesome but sometimes you just have to grab the bull by its horns and proactively grow your following.
This tactic isn’t just for newbies, even the best of marketers do it!
Facebook groups help you to get exposure, network and meet like minded individuals you can learn from. Treat it as one big Pinterest mastermind session.
So how do you use a Facebook group for Pinterest growth?
● Research the group: how active are the members? who runs the group? All this information will help you decide which is the best group to join.
● Join and read the group rules thoroughly. Unfortunately, Facebook groups fall victim to spammers so rules can be quite strict. Don’t be the person posting on the wall when the group strictly asks you to only comment on existing posts.
● Introduce yourself. Make it known who you are, what you would like to learn and what skill sets you can bring to the table. A brief introduction lets the group know you’re a keen contributor.
● Don’t remain silent! Engage! Share useful articles, content and images related to Pinterest. Sometimes all it takes is sharing a funny meme to brighten everyone’s day for the group to gain your trust. You will soon be known as a valuable contributor.
● If you join a group focused on Pinterest growth there will more than likely be a “share your Pinterest account” post, similar to an Instagram pod (where you follow accounts for a follow back) but if there isn’t – start one yourself. This is where the magic happens. Start following and watch your account grow.
● Lastly, I am a massive preacher of honest engagement. When you follow someone using the above method, engage with them and do not follow to then unfollow a couple of days later!
3. Join a Pinterest Group Board in Your Niche (Or Create One Yourself)
Groups boards on Pinterest are quite similar to Facebook groups for growth.
It’s all about engaging, contributing and commenting. Choosing the right group board is done the same way. Check to see whether its industry related and if the existing pins call to you. If you’re convinced – ask to join. Each board might have different ways of joining but when in doubt just message the creator.
Contributing to a Pinterest group board can see you benefit from networking, increased reach, follower growth and personal growth. There’s a lot to learn on Pinterest and you might just meet some new friends along the way.
Let’s talk secret group boards. You won’t hear much about them but I can tell you that joining one can be very resourceful. You would use a secret group board in the same way as a mastermind session: to exchange ideas, discuss topics and brainstorm new strategies.
If all of that fails, well you know the saying… If you can’t join them – be them and create one yourself!
4. Use Only the Best Images on Pinterest
Because Pinterest is a visual search engine – it goes without saying that you’re not playing the game right without A+ images. There are clear photo dimensions to follow like any other social media platform so to help you out here’s a link to a handy social media image cheat sheet..
Here’s a brief summary to get you started:
Profile photo: 165 X 165 pixels
Board display: 222 X 155 pixels
Image thumbnail: 50 X 50 pixels
Nothing is worse than a pixelated image or one that is cut off – use these guides to ensure this doesn’t happen to you!
As mentioned before, don’t forget to name your images with industry keywords to make them SEO friendly.
5. Embrace the ‘Tried It’ Function
Pinterest now has a handy checkmark function users can use to rate your products, recipes or how-to lists. This function is only available on organic pins as stated by Pinterest which is a good thing as your audience will effectively only be rating your un-paid content. There are two ways to use this feature that is beneficial to your account:
1. Networking: find an account related to your industry and start rating them. When You rate you can leave a comment. The more you interact with that account the more they get to know you. It’s a really easy way of building contacts and relationships.
2. Audience engagement: the tried it function is a pathway to engage and converse with your audience. If they talk to you, listen and you can learn a lot about what is working and what needs a little more improvement. Just be sure to always respond!
6. Consistency Is Key
This single handed strategy is the sure fire way to succeed on Pinterest. If you are consistent and pin daily – eventually you will reap the fruits of your labour. Pinky promise!
Everyone has a different idea of the optimum daily pins to be seen and grow your following but I say – pin twice as much today as you did yesterday and grow from there.
If you tend to pin 10 times a day – you’ll now be pinning 20 times. Once you get the hang of it (and trust me it gets addictive) you can increase the quantity.
Not all pins are created equal, what I’m saying is it isn’t enough to repin all day long, I do however suggest repinning from your homepage daily to engage with the accounts you follow.
What you really want to do is pin valuable content that fits your niche straight from a website with catchy titles and beautiful imagery.
Make sure that when you’re repinning you don’t use the existing caption, create a new and improved one of your own!
If you take pride in your Pinterest account and authentically represent your brand you will celebrate the wins that come from it. Social media marketing is about being social – so get out there and socialise. As the saying goes – nothing good comes easy. If you commit to these strategies and work at it daily I guarantee you will reap the benefits.
As always, you can also reach us on Twitter (@thewebsitegroup ← Click to Tweet Us).