How do you feel about Instagram at the moment? I know that a lot of business owners and online content creators are really feeling the struggle, right now. And for many people (myself included) the lack of significant growth on Instagram can be really discouraging.
But what if you could use another platform to develop your online presence? Not instead of Instagram, but in unison.
And what if that platform has been right under your nose this entire time?
Because, actually, it has been. That platform is Pinterest.
More often than not, Pinterest is seen as social media. But that’s actually a deep misunderstanding, and I’ll explain why later. However, if we’re going to group Pinterest together with Instagram, Facebook and Twitter (as is often the case), it’s interesting to note that it’s my biggest channel. By a long run.
““Pinterest is one of the most underutilized and powerful marketing tools you can use.”
I have over 500,000 followers and 1.2 million monthly viewers on Pinterest. Compared to just 30,000 followers on Instagram.
And, as a result, Pinterest is Coco’s Tea Party’s largest source of referral traffic.
“Pinterest is one of the most underutilized and powerful marketing tools you can use, no matter which niche you’re in, but it won’t provide results if you don’t know how to use it strategically.” Melyssa Griffin, creator of the Pinfinite Growth online course says.
So how can you create a Pinterest strategy that will bring solid results and boost your online presence? To help, I’ve compiled a list of 7 essential Pinterest tips for bloggers and small businesses owners. So grab a cup of tea, a pen and paper, and start strategising…
7 Pinterest Tips for Bloggers & Small Businesses
1. Treat Pinterest Like a Search Engine
People go to Instagram and Facebook to casually scroll through their feed. But they visit Pinterest because they’re looking for something specific (be that a “recipe for roasted cauliflower soup” or a “long winter cardigan”). So Pinterest actually operates like a search engine, rather than a social media platform.
And when you start to view Pinterest as a search engine you’ll immediately change your approach to the platform.
Keywords are really important. So before sharing an image on Pinterest think first about what people would logically search for if they were seeking that information. Then caption your image with those words. For example, instead vague captions like “my big day” use more logical and descriptive phrases, such as “bohemian wedding dress”.
The same rule should apply to all of your Pinterest boards too. Give them clear titles that are easy to find in search (“gluten-free bakes”, for example), and you’ll quickly notice more activity on your account.
2. Share the Right Images
Images that are portrait or square automatically fill more screen space on Pinterest (whether you’re browsing on the desktop or mobile site). So they’re far more eye-catching.
Therefore, it’s a good idea to crop and resize your images before uploading them to Pinterest. And if you want to share landscape photos try grouping a series or shots together in a vertical collage (here’s a good example).
Infographics and images with text overlays also perform really well on Pinterest, and generate a lot of referral traffic. So use online tools such as Canva to create engaging designs specifically for Pinterest. Just remember to always update your Pin’s URL link so that it takes Pinterest users back to your website or blog for more information.
3. Take Advantage of “Rich Pins”
“Rich Pins have the power to add extra information to your pins and make it easier for your content to be found,” Marisa Oliveira, VIP & Luxe Account Consultant at chloédigital says.
When you enable Rich Pins, headlines and article descriptions will appear on any content that you share from your website or blog. And if you’re a retail business Rich Pins will display your product details and prices. (Click here to see a Rich Pin in action).
To use Rich Pins you first need to register as a Pinterest Business Account, and then add a piece of HTML code to your website. You can find detailed instructions here.
“Pinterest has confirmed that Rich Pins are favored in their search results and they lead to more user engagement,” Marisa reveals. So get Rich Pins set up ASAP, if you’re not using them already…
4. Look at What’s Trending
One of the best things about Pinterest is the fact that they allow their users to see which search terms are trending at any given moment. Simply click on the search bar at the top of the webpage, and a dropdown menu will appear displaying your recent searches, “ideas for you” and “trending ideas”.
And it’s the “trending ideas” list that you need to take note of.
These are the most popular search terms across the platform, at that moment in time. So if you have content that relates to any of those themes take that opportunity to share those images on Pinterest, using the trending search terms.
5. Schedule Your Pins
It’s unlikely that you’re going to be able to dedicate time to Pinterest seven days a week. And that’s okay. One of the great things about the platform is you can automate your content. Use Tailwind to schedule pins for the week ahead if you’re not able to log-on every day.
“As you should be pining frequently, the biggest benefit of using a scheduling tool is the time you’ll be saving,” chloédigital’s Marisa Oliveira says. “There is no harm in scheduling Pins, and you should take advantage of tools like Tailwind. On top of that, you can use Tailwind’s Smart Schedule tool to figure out the best times of day to Pin, so that you reach more followers.”
6. Don’t Worry About Your Follower Count
Whilst it’s always nice to have a large follower count, you can still be really successful on Pinterest with a very modest following. Because if you’re sharing good content – and writing savvy captions packed with key search terms – you’re able to reach every Pinterest user, in theory. So you could have 10 followers and a pin that reaches over 10,000 people.
Isn’t that brilliant?!
7. Put the Time In
As with anything in life, success on Pinterest won’t come overnight. But it’s much easier to see a steady flow of growth in a short space of time on Pinterest, than it is on Instagram. And that feels really rewarding, and helps motivate you to work even harder.
Put these Pinterest tips to use over a three month period and you’ll definitely see results!
And if you want to invest a bit more time into the platform it’s worth listening to episode #77 of The Goal Digger Podcast, Why Pinterest Should Be A Priority, and checking out chloédigital’s guide to Pinterest SEO.
Do you plan to put my Pinterest tips to the test? I’d love to hear which strategies you find the most effective, so leave a comment below to share your thoughts and experiences…
P.S. For more blogging and social media strategy download my e-book, 10 Things I Wish I Knew When I Started Blogging.
Image by Shay Cochrane