Pinterest is an extremely important tool for any blogger or entrepreneur, or anyone with a website really. Why? Because Pinterest is a darn-near PERFECT marketing tool! It is our not-so-secret marketing weapon and here’s why.
Pinterest is not like any other Social Media websites or platforms. We struggle to identify Pinterest as a Social Media site even, since it functions more like a search engine. People use it like they use Google.
A user will get an urge to cook, or get creative for a DIY project, or want travel advice, or any number of 100 things, and they will search Pinterest for great tips! Therefore, Pinterest really is not about the number of followers you have (although this is an added bonus) but rather about your search engine optimization skills.
Which is EXCELLENT news, especially for someone just getting started. If you have awesome content, and you know how to present your content beautifully on Pinterest (which you will by the end of this article, guaranteed!) than you can become a Pinterest Power User in the blink of an eye!
Side Note: If you need help in SEO, don’t worry, we got you! Find our SEO guide for beginners here!
With nearly 3 million monthly users, Pinterest allows you to get your content or business in front of millions of people, drive traffic to your site, and hopefully translate those eyeballs into paying customers!
If you are new to marketing your business or blog you are in the right place. We are going to walk you through every single step we use to pinning perfection! And of course, exactly how Pinterest helped us triple our website traffic in 2 short months.
Here is a step by step guide on how to create a Pinterest profile that will benefit your blog or business.
Create a Pinterest Business Profile
Creating a business account is 100% absolutely free. So is a personal account of course (and you probably already have one of those) so why choose a business count?
Every business account comes with the ability to view your profile analytics, sign up for rich pins, and have the ability to advertise if you decide to do so. In short, you get more functionality and you have the ability to learn what works, to maximize your success on Pinterest!
To set up your business account:
Set Your Account Up for Success
Now that you have a business account created, go to your account settings and fill in your blog/business information. Here are some important steps not to miss.
Business Name – Following your business name, include what kind of business you are, using key words in the description. For example, ours is ‘Travel Blog‘.
Profile Picture – Change your profile picture to a high quality photo of you, so people can see your face and begin putting a face to your business name!
About You – Provide a short description about who you are and what type of content you provide. Be strategic and use keywords whenever possible. You only have 160 characters, so be smart with your word choice.
Claim – Make sure to claim your website and any other accounts affiliated with your business, so Pinterest knows who you are. [KEY! Don’t miss this step. This will give you access to your account analytics which will give you insight on what pins are performing best, who’s pinning your pins, and more!]
Create Your First Board
Here are a few important steps to remember when creating a board.
Name – When naming your board, keywords are KEY! Although you may want to name your boards with cute and creative phrases, you need to consider what people are searching. For example, use “Travel North America” rather then “Let’s Fly Away.”
What we’e found that works is to create a list of 3-5 possible board names, then ask friends and family which of those 3-5 they are most likely to type into a search bar. It is HUGE to get feedback from real people!
Description – Add a description about what people can find on this board. Make sure the description is accurate and to-the-point, a few sentences should be perfect. Again, use a few related keywords if possible.
Hashtags – Add 5-10 hashtags related to your board. When choosing your hashtags, consider your strategy. If you have favorite hashtags that you use on other platforms such as Instagram and Facebook, the it may make sense to use those hashtags, or something similar. Then, you will likely attract a similar audience that you’ve created on those platforms!
Cover – Choose a photo you would like to be the main display for your board. You will definitely want to consider the overall ‘look’ of your profile, ensuring you are consistent. All of your colors should go together, and the overall profile should have a consistent theme. This will ensure you have a beautiful profile that attracts your audience, especially when you have expanded to a bunch of boards!
Additional Tip – Once your board is complete, create pins using the board’s cover photo and link that pin back to your board when you pin it! For example, if you create a ‘VanLife’ board with a ton of great content, then you can create a ‘VanLife’ pin that links to your board. This will create a positive loop where one pin can lead to a user viewing many more pins you’ve generated!
Strategically Follow Other Accounts
Remember that Pinterest is more of a search engine than a social media platform. Regardless, your follow strategy should align with your overall strategy. Follow others in your same niche or interests, ideally accounts you respect, whose content you love. This will ensure that your feed is inspirational for your own content creation!
You also have the option to follow individual boards, so you can really customize your home feed. We use our follow strategy to get ideas for ourselves about travel ideas. And sometimes an awesome piece of content can trigger a lightbulb in your own head!
Repin Amazing Content
This is the biggest mistake we were making when we first started using Pinterest for our business. At first, we were only pinning content that linked back to our website. However, it is EXTREMELY important to pin other amazing content as well. Here’s why:
It helps your ranking on Pinterest. If you are pinning quality content that gets repinned, Pinterest views your account as more valuable, which further tells Pinterest to show your pins to more people in searches and smart feeds. Now, we try to pin 20-30% our content and 70-80% other people’s content.
How to Create a Pin – The Basics
Create an eye catching pin that will catch the attention of your audience. This is critical, remember the saying to not judge a book by its cover? Well, people still do that. You need a good cover.
The pieces of the pin are pretty simple: photo, size and text. Your job will be to use these 3 levers to make a pin that is so amazingly appealing that people will have to click on it!
Photo – Use a photo for the background of your pin rather than a blank background, as this will make your pins stand out on a board. The important thing when choosing a photo is that it should align with your strategy, and ideally be relevant to the content of the pins link.
The best strategy is to use a few different images that pin back to the same content, and to experiment to find out what works. For us, we’ve found that pins that have pictures of us included perform better. Most likely because our content typically includes personal stories and strategies, so pictures of us would align with our content strategy!
Size – Tall pins perform better than wide pins on Pinterest simply because they show up in the feed better. Square or wide pins show up too short on the feed, and people will scroll right by them, maybe without ever noticing the pin.
Notice the square pin in the photo below. It doesn’t stand out while scrolling because it is too short.
Therefore, when you are creating pins it is best to make sure they are taller than they are wide. The ideal size is 735 px wide and 1102 px (or maybe a bit more even) tall. If the photo you are using tweaks this number a little, that is not as big of a deal, just make sure to remember when creating your pins: taller > wider!
Text – Add a catchy title over the image that sums up the content you are linking to with the pin. One thing that seems obvious but sometimes isn’t: make sure the text is easy to read. Sometimes you can be so deep in creating the pin that you forget to make it readable! To make sure you aren’t going to far with fonts and background colors, have friends and family take a look and tell you if the text is readable.
As for what the text should be, we have found that titles starting with “How To,” “Why To,” “Things To Do,” “3 Day Guide,” etc. perform the best for us. These work because the title tells the reader that there is something being offered with this content, something they can learn for free!
Again, make sure the text aligns with your overall content strategy and experiment with different texts to see what works best for you. Also, final text tip, put your website somewhere on the pin. It can be in smaller text at the top or bottom, but make sure to include it.
Here is our best performing pin. Does it check all the boxes?
How to Create a Pin – Using Canva
We use a software service called Canva and absolutely love how easy it is to create beautiful pins. We used to use Photoshop, which also works very well and is a bit more powerful, but we find Canva to be a little more user friendly.
Canva provides design sizes for basically anything you will ever need. To mention a few, they have Pinterest templates, Instagram story and post templates, Facebook post and cover photo templates, flyers, posters, business cards and more! If you end up using a different program, such as Photoshop or Illustrator, remember to use the ideal size (735×1102) in the section above.
Side Note: Canva requires a monthly subscription to use, but we find it to be more than worth it. If you are interested in skipping this section and having us create pins for you, let us know!
Try Canva for a free 30 day trial:
Once your account is created, select the Pinterest graphic design to create a new Pinterest pin. You are going to want to take 5-10 minutes to click around the software, familiarizing yourself with Canva’s user interface and functionality. These 5-10 minutes of experimenting might save you an hour down the road, and will ensure you are using Canva’s full power!
Pin Size – Canva offers different templates and a search bar so you can find an eye catching template that may work for your pin, at least as a starting point. Of course, these templates will be optimized for their size on a Pinterest board, so you don’t have to worry about size! From here, you can customize your pin to your liking!
Background Image – Using Canva you can of course upload your own images as a background to your pin. Uploads allows you to import your own personal photos and will help put them in the proper Pinterest size template. We typically use this unless we don’t have a good photo for what we are trying to create.
When we find ourselves in a situation where we don’t have a good photo option, Canva has a library of available images to use as a background. This can be extremely helpful to experiment with different photo options for pins, and to use as filler photos if you are creating a pin with a grid of different photos.
We use Canva’s library to find background photos if we don’t have a personalized one to use, and also to find our shapes to frame our text. FYI, some of the photos come with a price tag, usually $1, but we personally only use the free ones. We make sure to select ‘free only’ when searching the images and never fail to find one that works.
Also, Canva offers non-image options to use for the background of your photo. There is a large library of backgrounds for you to experiment with to find a beautiful option!
Pin Text – When it comes time to add text to your pin, Canva makes it easy. You can either pick from available templates or add a text box that is completely customizable to your liking. Don’t forget to add your website somewhere on your pin!
Once your pin is finished, you can upload it straight from Canva to Pinterest. To do this you will have to give Canva access to your Pinterest profile. You can find this in your account settings.
Additionally, you can resize your pin to a different design size if you would like to use the pin on a different social media platform or on your website. We always resize to an Instagram story and Facebook post so we can use these to promote on those platforms. All done with a simple click of a button!
Try Canva for free here:
How to Create a Pin – Uploading
You are finally ready to upload your pins! The final step! Here are the key pieces you want to make sure not to miss.
Upload Your Image – Put that beautiful, eye catching imagine with your catchy title and website on it into Pinterest!
URL – Add the URL you would like the pin to link back to. Of course this is necessary, but make sure the link is correct and works! On one occasion, we created a pin with a link that was broken, and will NEVER do that again!
Choose a Board – Pick the board you would like your pin to be pinned to. Make sure your pin aligns with that board’s content and strategy.
Description – As always, make sure your description describes exactly what content the pin links to, using as many keywords as possible. Your description should be a few sentences long. Don’t be lazy on this step – it is extremely important in getting your pin to the top of Pinterest’s search bar.
Hashtags – Add 5-10 hashtags to your pins. These hashtags work like other social media platforms. If someone searches a hashtag, any post that uses that hashtag can appear. Make sure your hashtag strategy aligns with your strategy on other platforms, and pick hashtags that align with the content in that pin.
Post – Now post away! However, don’t just post your pins without a coherent strategy. Yes, there is a strategy around how often you should pin, when to pin, and how long between pins! Heres what we’ve found works perfectly with our strategy: Tailwind.
What is Tailwind? An amazing program that can help you IMMENSELY with your Pinterest strategy! Tailwind is a marketing tool software built to manage your presence across the visual web on Pinterest and Instagram.
You can use Tailwind to upload and schedule content, maximize your reach (thanks to their numerous features) and analyze your success, tweaking your strategy when you find what works.
FYI: If you do decide to use Tailwind, you will have to give Tailwind access to your Pinterest account. We have found that it has been MORE than worth it.
Main Features and Marketing Tools
Publisher – through publisher you can upload pins, insert your description, select multiple boards to upload to, and add your linked URL to the pins. Really, everything you need to do to upload a pin to Pinterest, you can do through Tailwind.
Smart scheduling – Your smart schedule is customized for every single user to schedule your pins at the most optimal time for your audience. When first setting up your profile you will be able to customize your schedule and choose how many times you would like to pin each day.
Once this is configured, Tailwind will automatically create your schedule based on when your followers are most active. It is recommended you pin 10-30x per day, but you can schedule whatever you can commit to. Once you have your profile, you can always edit your schedule by clicking ‘schedule’ on the left side toolbar.
Chrome Extension – Add the chrome extension on your computer to make scheduling pins easy at any time. Click on the chrome extension button from the Tailwind page, then click ‘add extension.’.
Once you’ve installed the Chrome extension, you will notice the Tailwind icon appear in the top left corner of all images in your browser. This is an easy way to schedule that exact image in one click. In addition, the Tailwind icon appears in the top right corner of your browser, giving you another way to schedule content.
Tailwind Tribes – This is Tailwind’s version of group boards. It allows users to join tribes that are relevant to their niche so they can share similar content and support each other, helping the entire tribe get their content seen.
How to Set Up Tailwind Tribes
- While on your home page, click on ‘Tribes’ on the left hand side.
Find a Tribe – Click on ‘Find a Tribe’ at the top of the Tailwind screen. From there, you can pick from popular tribe categories or search for tribes using keywords or categories. Once you find one you would like to join, click ‘Join Now.’ Make sure you preview the tribe first to make sure you are on board with the rules and content shared.
Request to Join – Not all tribes are open for everyone to join. You may need to ‘Request To Join.’ If that’s the case, send the admin a request explaining why you would like to be a part of the drive. You will usually hear back about your request within a few days and will receive an email if you are accepted.
Your Tribes – The tribe will be added to ‘Your Tribes’. Depending on your package subscription, the number of tribes you can join may be limited. Keep this in mind when you pick your package. We use the package that allows unlimited tribes, because we feel this is an essential piece to getting our content re-shared and seen by a maximum number of people.
Introduce yourself – Send a message through the tribe message board so everyone knows who you are. This is an excellent chance to share the mission of your site and content with a new audience! An audience with potential influencers…
Follow Board Rules – Make sure you are following the board rules, or you may get kicked out of a Tribe. For example some boards require you to share 2 tribe member posts for every 1 that you personally share. Other tribes are 1:1. Some limit the type of content you can share. Pay attention to those rules to make the most out of Tailwind tribes.
SmartLoop – SmartLoop is a new feature Tailwind is offering that allows you to automatically repin your best content. You can set up evergreen loops which are continuously circulating all year round or seasonal loops where you can pick a specific time frame you would like certain pins to circulate. Seasonal loops are great for things such as Gift Ideas, Thanksgiving Recipes, etc.
How to set up SmartLoops
- While on your home page, click on ‘SmartLoop’ under ‘Publisher’ on the left hand side.
- Click on ‘New Loop’. Choose ‘Evergreen’ (continuously rescheduled pins for all year round) or ‘Seasonal’ (rescheduled pins between a set time frame).
- Create a Campaign Name and pick the boards you would like these pins to be looped on. If you are setting up a seasonal loop, pick a time frame you would like this content looped.
- Add your pins. Pick the pins you would like in this loop. You need to pick one existing pin to create the SmartLoop. From there, the loop is created and you can add new pins immediately to it through the smart scheduler.
- Set-up the SmartLoop schedule. Customize how often you would like a pin from this loop pinned, how long between pinning the same pin to one specific board, and more. Tailwind will tell you how long it will take to loop through all pins, which is great for picking correct intervals, especially for seasonal pins.
Insights – Tailwind offers analytics that will help you in the future. Even with the basic account, you will get a weekly summary of your profile and pin performance, pin inspector, and insight on how much of your website traffic is driven from Pinterest.
How to Upload Your Content to Tailwind
Upload Your Pin – While on your dashboard, click on ‘Publisher’ on the left. Click on ‘+ Create New Pin’ then ‘Upload Images’ and choose your image(s).
Prepare Your Pin – Add a pin description using as many keywords as possible. Add 5-10 related hashtags at the end of the pin. Pick your corresponding boards (huge bonus when using Tailwind because you can schedule to multiple boards at once). Finally, update the URL. Tailwind will automatically link your website to every pin, so make sure you have the correct URL, as this is where Pinterest users will be sent when they click your pins.
Add to Your Tribes – Make sure you share your pin with your tribes for maximum exposure. Remember that each tribe has different rules. It is important you make sure you are following the rules of each tribe or you may get kicked out.
Schedule Your Pin – Once you’re ready to schedule your pin, click ‘Add to Queue’ which will schedule the pin to the next available slot in your smart schedule. If you would like to specify when you want the pin scheduled, you can click the little clock on the left of the screen and select a specific time.
Intervals – If your pin is going to multiple boards you can set the interval so you can spread your content out. We typically put a few days between pinning the same pin again, so that the pin is fresh each time. Once you’ve selected your preferred slots, hit ‘Set Interval’ and then ‘Schedule.’
View Your Scheduled Pins – Once you have some pins scheduled, check out your smart schedule on the right hand side. If need be, you can edit any upcoming pins or send them back to draft status.
You can change the scheduled slot by dragging and dropping it with your mouse. In addition, you can lock certain pins in place by clicking the small lock icon at the bottom of the pin.
Lastly, you can always shuffle your schedule by clicking the shuffle button in the top right of your smart schedule. This will randomize all scheduled pins EXCEPT the ones that are locked into place. Once your pins are scheduled, they will be published automatically. No push notification reminders necessary!
How to Schedule Tribe Member’s Pins
Select a Tribe – Go to ‘Tribes’, click on ‘Your Tribes’ then select the tribe of your choice.
Scroll and Choose – Pick a pin you’d like to re-share. Fill in the board(s) you would like to share the pin to and then click ‘Add to Queue.’
That’s it! Piece of cake, isn’t it? Should be easy to follow any tribe’s posting rules with how easy sharing is!
Pinnability – Definitely a made up word, but we are going to roll with it. Make sure your website is pinnable. Essentially, every image on your site will have a Pinterest icon appear when that image is hovered over. That way all of the images on your site will be extremely easy for others to pin and share themselves on Pinterest. Learn how to do that here! Or we use this WordPress plugin which we’ve found works very well.
Also, add a picture at the bottom of your blog posts that would look beautiful on Pinterest (one you’ve created in Canva!). Ask your audience to save and repin it.
Use Multiple Pin Options – Create multiple pins for each page or products you are promoting. Try different title and images, see what does well and what struggles. We usually create 5 pins per article and schedule them to be pinned at different intervals via Tailwind. Then we can use Tailwind to measure the success of each pin. One thing we’ve found is that pictures that show us typically perform better than stock images!
Keywords – Find ridiculously awesome keywords. Rather than trying to read people’s minds about what they might be searching, use Pinterest to find the right keywords! Type in your #1 keyword into the search bar and Pinterest will give you multiple suggestions underneath for other possible keywords. Use a few of your favorite Pinterest-suggested keyword options!
Rich Pins – Maximize your use of rich pins. There are 4 types of rich pins per Pinterest:
- Product pins that make shopping your products easier.
- Recipe pins that allow you to share ingredients, cook time and serving size easily with your audience.
- Article pins that show your audience the article headline, author and story description.
- App pins that show an install button so people can download your app without leaving Pinterest.
Rich pins are more likely to be shared, seen and prioritized on Pinterest. However, it will be difficult for every one of your blog posts or articles to be ‘rich’. Just make sure you have at least a few.
Repin Old Pins – Every once in awhile you should check your analytics and repin your pins. This gets them back at the top of your board.
Pin Multiple Boards – Pin the same pin to multiple different boards. We also use Tailwind for this, since the software makes adding one pin to multiple boards at different time intervals incredibly easy with one little click of a button.
Content is King – As with every method of driving traffic to your site, the number 1 rule is to make ridiculously awesome, fantastic content. Of course you are already creating content you love and that your audience adores, so keep that up!
There You Have It
Everything lolglobetrotting has done to drastically increase our website traffic using Pinterest! We used every one of these strategies and ended up with 3 times the traffic, Pinterest is by far our largest source of traffic and it is growing every day! Good luck with your own website, and let us know if we can help out!
And of course, please pin the below image to save for later!