I could kick myself for my first year of blogging! I *knew* Pinterest was a huge traffic driver for bloggers, but I thought, "Meh. I'm a wellness and lifestyle blogger. That doesn't mesh with Pinterest's platform, at least not consistently. I'll have a small presence on it, but I'm going to focus elsewhere." Face palm, Paige! Face palm. I spent an entire year ignoring one of, if not THE biggest traffic driver for bloggers and small business owners.
May of this year, I started to wisen up. Facebook was going algorithm cray cray, bloggers were making full time income off their Instragram feeds alone, and Twitter was so fast paced it was hard to keep up and keep content in front of followers! I made Pinterest my sole social media focus for the summer. By mid-September, I had grown my account by 420% and pushed it up to my top three referring sites to my blog. Here's how I did it:
5 Ways I Grew My Pinterest Over 400% In 3 Months
Also a bonus? When you're a business account, you can promote your pins. You set your goal for the campaign, you set your daily budget, you set the length of the campaign, and boom - it pushes your content in front of more pinners for more repins, clicks to your site, and eyes on your content! Oh, and also also? You get access to pin it buttons, widgets and other gadgets to make pinning from your website super easy. Pinterest just hooks you up with all these codes for you to simply plug into your site. It's great!
2) Enable rich pins. When you do this, your website is automatically added to the bottom of the pin, and your pin is verified to have an actual website associated with it. Ever click an awesome image for the recipe/DIY/fashion source/etc and it was a dud pin? With rich pins, it shows other pinners you're legit. This will result in more repins and higher engagement on the pins you put out there. Your logo (whatever you use as your flavion on your blog) will also show where your website is listed so your branding on your pins is consistent. Want to enable rich pins? Here's the simple tutorial I used! It involves a bit of coding, but I promise it was really pretty easy. Allow a week or so for your pins to consistently show up as rich pins. The tutorial has both Blogger and self-hosted Wordpress instructions.
3) Don't put junk out there. Cool, so you've upgraded your account to a business account (which is free, FYI), and have rich pins enabled. What next? CONTENT. Real talk friends: bad content doesn't get repinned. It just doesn't. Here's the short list of specifics on what makes a good pin:
- Vertical image, preferably 750x1150pxls OR LONGER. Do not pin horizontal shots from your site! They get lost in the shuffle of people's feed and look terrible. They're short and stubby. It's actually bad PR for your site to have these kinds of pins floating around out there.
- Naturally bright, clear shots. Don't use images with an obvious flash. Don't use dark images. Don't use semi-blurring shots. Don't use dark, grainy shots. I edit ALL my images in editing software by brightening them and upping the sharpness.
- Add text over the image. I've seen great vertical shots that were clear and bright but I had no friggin idea what the pin was about, so I moved on. Add text to your image with what the pinner will get when they click on the pin! Make the value of your pin obvious. Don't make it too big and have it ruin the image though. I'd also recommend you keep the colors and font consistent with the branding of your website.
*Special note to fashion blogs/websites: you don't need to add text over your pins because the style is obvious. Instead, you should edit off your head. Yes, that sounds weird. But any shots where you're looking at the camera need your head/face gone. Zoom in on the outfit instead. People aren't pinning you because you're pretty or have white teeth, they want your outfit shown off as inspiration. Trust me. It's nothing personal to you or about you, it's about the outfit/style, which is why your face needs to get gone, asap.
|All of these are beautiful fashion pins with tons of repins - none of them have a face|
5) Show up! This is the magic potion for all social media channels: if you want to see results from it, you have to be active in it! If you think you can pin a few bloggers pins once a day and have your account explode, you're wrong. I get on Pinterest about 5-10 times a day and pin about 5-10 or so images at a time. I do a mix of direct-from-website pins, threads on Facebook, and repins from my own feed. With the new smart feed, you HAVE to pin from your own feed if you want your images to show in your followers' feed! Pinterest changed the game in early September, and this is now critical for your own success.
Showing up sounds time intensive, but really it can be done in a matter of a few minutes at a time. Waiting on an email from your colleague? Pin a few pins! Get stuck at some railroad tracks? Pin some pins from your app! At the doctor's office? Pin those pins while you wait! And just like that, you've shown up for Pinterest, and now Pinterest is cool working for you and your content too.
I've listed those 5 ways I grew my Pinterest in a semi-necessary order. You'll definitely want a business account and rich pins enabled first. Then you'll want to make sure your content is on point. Then you'll want to reciprocate others and show the heck up! I would also note that all of these things need to work TOGETHER to drive your Pinterest following and repins - you can't do just one or three of them and expect to see results. But if you do all of these 5 things, you too can grow your account in a relatively short amount of time!