Recently I was invited down to a blogger workshop hosted by Pinterest to learn about how to get the best out of the platform and how to unleash my pinning potential.
I’m a self-confessed Pinterest addict, regularly using it to: bookmark recipes that I will inevitably turn into #PinterestFails; plan extravagant renovations for my future house; and shamelessly promote my lifestyle blog.
As well as being a creative platform for influencers, it can also act as a great place for brands to connect and engage with current and potential customers. It gives brands the opportunity to shout about their interests, passions and ideas in a highly visual format.
If you’re new to Pinterest or just aren’t seeing the results you want, here are 9 tips that will help you on your way to becoming a Pinterest pro!
1) Upgrade to a business account to access more features
Verifying your website and upgrading to a business account is free of charge (and always will be), so make sure to convert your Pinterest account to get the most out of the platform.
The most useful feature of a business account is the analytics section, which will give you detailed information about the performance of your pins and boards, your followers and their interests, and the activity of pins being pinned directly from your website.
The business centre is also a hub of tips, guides and tools that will help you get the most out of Pinterest for your business. A particularly useful section is their blog, which has a regular ‘trending’ feature, giving insight into what Pinterest users are searching for the most in that month.
2) Treat it like a search engine, not a social network
Probably one of the most interesting comments to come from the session was that Pinterest don’t actually call themselves a social network.
For its users, the platform is less about sharing with others and more about curating personal content to help with inspiration and ideas, whether that’s research for a school project, renovating a house or even planning a wedding.
Millenials are increasingly bypassing Google and going straight to Pinterest as the first point of research due to its intuitive guided search. The platform acts as more of a discovery tool, where if you search for a particular term, it presents you with a variety of options rather than a literal interpretation of your search query.
3) Make your pin descriptions thoughtful and useful
Pinterest doesn’t use any clever software to determine the type of image you’re pinning, it relies simply on pin and board descriptions, as well as board titles and categories. If your descriptions aren’t clear enough, Pinterest won’t know where to place the content and you won’t be appearing in searches.
For example, if you’re pinning an image of a white shirt, a good pin description would be ‘This plain white shirt would look great with a pair of boyfriend jeans and stiletto heels’. This helps facilitate discovery by allowing people to find the pin through a number of different related searches, in addition to the standard search term ‘white shirt’.
4) Use pins with a portrait orientation for more impact
You’ll probably have already noticed that Pinterest features a much higher percentage of portrait orientated images. The reason for this is not only because they grab more attention than landscape images in the feed, but also because they’re better suited to mobile devices.
Over 80% of users access Pinterest from a mobile device, which means you need to ensure your website is properly optimised for mobile, otherwise you’ll see an increase in the bounce rate from any referral traffic Pinterest sends your way.
5) Don’t just re-pin; bring in fresh and inspiring content
Pinterest is absolutely brimming with the same re-pinned content, so it really helps to stand out from the same repetitive images by pinning imagery from your own site and from other sites that have inspired you.
One of the UK’s top Pinterest users, Will of Bright Bazaar, is a great example of this, as he not only re-pins but also actively pins from his own website and other sources of inspiration. A great way to do this easily is to install the Pinterest extension for your browser, which means you can pin easily whilst browsing other websites.
Using scheduling platforms, such as Buffer, you can also schedule pins throughout the week, making forward planning an absolute breeze.
6) Utilise the ‘Pin it’ button on your website
A great way to boost your Pinterest presence is to encourage your customers to pin images and products directly from your site using the Pinterest ‘Pin it’ buttons. The average pin is re-pinned 11 times, which means there’s the potential to have your products and brand seen by a much larger audience.
The ‘Pin it’ button only requires a small piece of code to add to your site and then you can also begin tracking its performance in Pinterest analytics.
7) Plan your seasonal boards two months in advance
Advance planning is absolutely key in getting users to engage with any holiday-specific content. The average Pinterest user will be searching for content two months before a seasonal event, so you need to ensure you’re actively pinning relevant content during that time period.
If you have a DIY tutorial on your brand’s blog that went down really well last Christmas, think about adding to it or creating something around a similar theme for the following year.
8) Shuffle your boards, never delete them
A big no-no on Pinterest is deleting a board simply because it’s no longer relevant for the time of year. Once you reach January, rather than deleting any festive boards, it’s best to simply move them to the bottom of your profile page.
Content is evergreen on Pinterest and you don’t want to lose the followers that may only follow a specific board of yours. You can always alter the title, reshuffle the pins and start pinning again once Christmas rolls around next year.
9) Don’t worry about how your Pinterest profile looks
Although you can spend hours perfecting the look of your profile page, the majority of Pinterest users only ever consume pins through the search feature or their home feeds. Sadly, they will rarely venture on to another user’s profile page to check out how neatly the boards are laid out.
That being said, boards are still seen through the search feature, so ensure you have appealing and relevant cover photos for all of your boards.
Do you have any top tips to get the best out of Pinterest? Share them in the comments section below!