It’s that time of year again. There’s non-stop Christmas music, the threat of Santa always watching and everyone is scouring Pinterest for the perfect thing to add to their secret gift board. All of this holiday cheer can mean big-bucks for brands – especially on Pinterest. With that in mind, we created the Ultimate Guide to Creating a Holiday Pinterest Strategy. Keep reading to have a holly, jolly, Pinterest-ready season.
Take advantage of smart feed.
By now you’ve probably noticed something a little different about your home feed. A few months ago Pinterest rolled out their new “smart feed” which takes the pins of those you follow, related pins and pins from your interest categories, then organizes your home feed by those groupings. We’ve heard a lot of people – especially Pinterest influencers – talk about how the the smart feed has negatively affected their repin count. But that doesn’t mean the new smart feed is bad, it just requires a different strategy.
- Explore Interest Feeds – To rank in the interest feeds your target audience is interested in, you need to first understand what’s already piquing their interest. Not sure where to begin? Pinterest’s analytics shows you your audiences’ top feeds, found under “Your Audience” on the dashboard. Click on a few interest feeds, and start your journey down the wonderful, interest-driven rabbit hole.
- Timing is everything – Because Pinterest’s home feed is a mix of three type of pins, and not just the pins of those you’re following, it’s more important than ever to pin when your audience is most active. With the holidays coming up, you don’t want to be sitting in front of the computer pinning image after image when your audience is online. Thanks to pin scheduling, you can pin when your audience is most active – even if it’s when you’re trying to keep the spiked cider away from Aunt Mae. Tailwind’s pin scheduling tool not only allows you to schedule repins, pins from the web and even pins from your Pinterest app, but it also analyzes when your audience is active and suggests times based on when they’re pinning.
- Up Your SEO – There are a couple of easy updates you can do to up your Pinterest SEO for the new smart feed:
- One of the simplest things you can do for your Pinterest SEO is to select a category for your boards. By doing that, you’re giving Pinterest an idea of where the pins added to those boards belong, and therefore what interest feeds they could be added to.
- Using keyword-rich descriptions on your pins and boards will also help Pinterest know where to place you. If you’re not sure which words are resonating with your audience, either check out your “top impressions” on Pinterest’s dashboard or see your word cloud from Tailwind’s analytics:
Create Gift Guide
Whether or not your company sells physical products, creating gift guide boards can be a great way to boost your engagement. An excellent example of a brand doing the gift guide boards right is the ever-amazing, Home Depot. They have a gift board for DIYers, for the car enthusiasts, for grillers, for kids, and for many, many other gift receivers in your life. So how can your brand take advantage of gift boards, even without any real gifts to sell?
- Create Boards Based On Followers Interests – As I mentioned earlier, you can easily find out what your fans are interested in using Pinterest’s Interest section on their dashboard. You can dive even deeper with Tailwind’s analytics and see what images and products are performing the best from your site. By creating gift boards perfectly tailored to your audiences’ needs, they will be more likely to engage with your boards.
- Use Rich Pins – Users love rich pins, Pinterest loves rich pins and you should definitely love rich pins, too. When creating a Pinterest gift guide, rich pins are especially helpful added to your online shop. Rich product pins show how much the item is, if it’s still available and alerts pinners when products have a price drop (perfect for holiday savings). Don’t have a product to sell? Add rich article pins to your site and you can create a blog about the best gifts of the season to add to your already-perfectly-targeted gift board.
- Promote popular products – Once you learn what your company’s top performing products are, you can leverage their popularity. Create a gift board inspired by your top products and include those pins in your newsletter or cross promote on different social platforms. If you have a physical store, you can pull a Target:
This is a great way to bring Pinterest to life and to promote your products!
Make Your Site Pinterest-Friendly
People browsing the web during the holiday season can lead to some serious revenue for brands. And with Pinterest driving more traffic than Twitter, you need to be optimizing your site for pinners. Not only are users wanting to save gift ideas to their gift boards, they’re also clicking through to your site from Pinterest. A few simple additions to your site will make for a perfect pinning experience.
- Add the Pin It Button – Social shares are important on every network, but sometimes brands overlook the power of the Pin It button. This addition makes it super easy for users to pin and share your products. Pinterest makes it simple to install various types of buttons and, once it’s implemented, you can track it’s usage from Pinterest’s analytics dashboard. Just click here to add the Pin It button to your site.
- Redirect Old Products – No one likes a 404 error – especially a pinner looking for the perfect gift. Because Pinterest content is evergreen, it’s not uncommon for old products to resurface months – or even years – later. With that in mind, it’s a really good idea to update your 404 error to include suggestions of other products or to redirect to related items. That way the people who clicked through will have a reason to stay on your site, even though your brand might have stopped selling the amazing cat-shaped teapot the user initially clicked on.
- Pay Attention to What Already Works – The old saying, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” might not be the most grammatically correct sentence, but it continues holds true in the digital age. Learn what images from your site are already producing the most repins and clicks on the Tailwind dashboard. Once you understand what draws people in, you can use images with a similar feeling on new products. For example, a picture of a model on the street holding a handbag might produce higher click-throughs than a stock image of the bag. So remember, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
Track Your Progress
It’s true – the holiday season happens every year. That’s why it’s important to keep track of what works – and what doesn’t work – every single year. Gain a full picture of your presence by setting up your Google Analytics tracking, verifying your site with Pinterest to gain access to their analytics and signing up for a Tailwind account. This will allow you to compliment the detailed information Pinterest’s analytics provide on audience demographics with the deep insights Tailwind gives on your overall Pinterest account, information about your domain and even traffic and revenue statistics through Google Analytics integration. With a complete picture of your holiday Pinterest presence, you will be better prepared for next year’s holiday season.
Any holiday Pinterest strategies we’re missing? Let us know in the comments!
Melissa Megginson is resident Marketing Manager and Cat Lady at Tailwind, the leading Pinterest tool for brands. Melissa specializes in content creation, social media, blogging, PR outreach and pretty much all things marketing. Find her on Twitter and Instagram at @MelMegg.