Pinterest is known for it’s potential to drive huge amounts of traffic to websites. In a recent podcast episode that featured blogger Kate Bryan, we heard what a big difference it can make for a blogger and a business. Her site is visited millions of times a month because of referral traffic from Pinterest but what is necessary for that traffic? Content and images!
Thoughts on content
For businesses interested in maximizing the potential of Pinterest, a website with pinnable images is a must. But, this will only take the business so far. Sites that aren’t frequently updated with new products or content are at a huge disadvantage.
For example, let’s take an entrepreneur who has just launched a business based on an amazing new kitchen gadget that she invented. She only has one product and a website with a few professional images of the product. She’s heard of the amazing results some businesses are receiving from Pinterest and knows her business needs a presence there.
She creates her account and pins the few images she has of her product. She also creates some boards that relate to her target market and is regularly active on Pinterest. She brings in new content from the web and repins and engages with her fellow pinners but she’s not seeing much traffic from Pinterest to her site. The traffic and sales she was hoping for from Pinterest just aren’t there.
What piece of the puzzle is our entrepreneur missing? Fresh content.
There are only so many times she can pin the images of her product before her account starts to look like a spam account. But what can she do? She’s not looking to expand he product line yet, but she can add a blog to her site. She has ideas of quick easy to write blog posts related to her business but she also needs images.
Entrepreneurs and business owners often feel that they are too busy, don’t have the budget or don’t have the talent to produce a blog with pinnable images. With free easy to use resources, creating images is easier than ever.
When it comes to producing high quality images, large brands with huge marketing budgets that can afford professional photographers do have an advantage but that doesn’t mean the small fish in the pond can’t get in on the Pinterest action.
Here are some easy ways that even those with small budgets can create some awesome images and in some cases a camera isn’t even necessary.
Remember Kate’s traffic that I mentioned at the beginning of this post? She is not a professional photographer but she does place importance on what her images look like. To get high quality images it’s no longer necessary to be a professional photographer with expensive equipment.
The digital cameras built into cell phones are amazing and can take some very pinnable images even if you’re not a pro. Here are a couple I’ve snapped with an iPhone:
I was so pleased with this one; I shared it on Instagram too.
Speaking of Instagram the mobile app has filters that can make a ho-hum picture into something more interesting .
What if you need an image but you don’t have a photo to represent the topic? You have a few options:
- Purchase a royalty-free image from a stock image site
- Use an image from a photo sharing site like Flick rthat allows Creative Commons usage
- Use a free image from MorgueFile (This is where I found the image used at the beginning of this post.)
Be sure to pay attention to the details of how you can use each image, some do not allow modification or require credit be given to the source of the image.
The images located from the sources listed above can be edited to fit your needs in photo editing software. Don’t worry if you’re not a Photoshop wizard, there are some free easy to use resources that can do the trick.
PicMonkey has a free version and a subscription version. The free option has a lot of tools that can get you far in your photo editing. Most of the images I use in my blog posts are created with PicMonkey
FotoFlexer is another free online service that I have used for photo editing and offers some different features than PicMonkey
This image was created using PicMonkey and a photo from MorgueFile. Quotes and helpful hints are very popular on Pinterest so consider using a quote or a useful tip from your post as an image.
The background for this image is a closeup of the side of a box that I took with my phone. The text and effect were added in a 99¢ app called PhotoWizard. The images created this way can be easily emailed and included in a blog post.
Infographics are very popular on Pinterest for a couple of reasons. They occupy a lot of Pinterest real estate that makes them hard to miss and they provide a lot of information in a single image. Some are very detailed and artistic but, they don’t have to be to be popular on Pinterest.
I often see infographics that depict a tutorial in the Pinterest feed. Sometimes these are called instructographics. The traffic-generating key to these is to make sure that the pinner needs to click through to your site to get all of the details for the project.
For example, The kitchen gadget entrepreneur could show a series of images of someone using her gadget but for the recipe the reader would have to click through to the site.
Here’s an example of what I mean: Recently, I came across an interesting project on Pinterest from Allison at The House of Hempworths. I applied her technique to some curtains I was hanging and made an infographic on PicMonkey to represent the steps.
This infographic like this could be used to benefit different types of businesses:
- DIY bloggers
- Affiliate marketers of curtains, curtain rods or curtain rings
With software like Photoshop, PicMonkey and FotoFlexer, a photograph isn’t required to make a pinnable image. One of my most popular pins on Pinterest is the image below. It was created 100% on PicMonkey. The Pinterest “P” was downloaded from Pinterest’s business site.
Traffic is a necessity to have a successful online business and Pinterest can be a great source. However, to reap that benefit, some work is required. Pinnable images can be made easily and inexpensively. Do you have other ideas for creating pinnable images? Please share them in the comments below. Thanks!