Looking to boost your business’s visibility on Pinterest? Want to know the secrets of truly effective Pinterest marketing and the tactics the pros use to realize exceptional results? Here at Tailwind, we live and breathe Pinterest. We’ve seen first hand how brands can use Pinterest to rapidly grow their sales, generate high-quality leads and connect with one of the most vibrant and active communities on the web.
Since Pinterest is all about sharing ideas and inspiration, we’ve put together a list of the 11 most effective Pinterest marketing hacks out there, based on the Pinterest Hacks webinar series we did with PostPlanner. Let’s take a look.
1. Focus on your Pinterest SEO
Pinterest is more than just a visually-focused social media platform. It’s also an incredibly powerful search and discovery engine, making Pinterest SEO a necessity. Well organized, SEO-friendly profiles, pins and boards are vital for getting your content get discovered, shared and repinned.
The Hack: Use searchable, relevant keywords in your pin text, board names and board descriptions. Discover word that work for your company by using Tailwind’s Domain Pin World Cloud showing the keywords users use the most when pinning your content.
2. Reuse viral content from other platforms
Sharing proven content across your social media accounts is a no-brainer. Not only does the smart feed favor posts that have performed well on other networks, but it’s also a safe bet that if your audience enjoyed the post on Facebook, the Pinterest users will enjoy it, too. But how exactly do you turn a highly popular tweet or Facebook post into Pinterest gold? What if there’s nothing visual to work with?
The Hack: Turn your popular tweets and posts into Pinterest images. This is often just a matter of finding a good stock image and using an image editor to add in some text. We love using Unsplash and Pexels for free stock photos and crafting Pinterest-perfect images using Canva, Share As Image or PicMonkey.
3. Embed your boards on your blog or website
Because most of your Pinterest content is locked out to people who aren’t logged in, Pinterest can seem like something of a walled garden. If a non-Pinterest user lands on your Pinterest account, they’ll only be able to view a couple of pins before being asked to login to create an account. Thankfully, Pinterest provides some great options for sharing your pins.
The Hack: If you have a website or blog, simply embed your boards on a static page or blog post. While you’re at it, make sure to add a “Pin It” button to your site’s social media sharing options.
4. Speak to the dream
More than any other social network, people use to Pinterest to be inspired. It’s where people go to plan their future, not comment about what they are currently doing. From cooking tips and wedding ideas to powerful quotes and DIY art tips, Pinterest users strongly connect with emotionally resonant and imaginative content. In fact, 74% of pinners view Pinterest as a tool to help them plan for the future, and 67% of pinners will experience a major life event within 6 months according to a study by Millward Brown Digital and Pinterest.
The Hack: Even if your business doesn’t lend itself to visual storytelling, there’s always an emotion or idea you can evoke with the right image. If you’re an accounting firm, a photo of a tax form probably isn’t going to generate much excitement. But a picture of a stunning vacation setting tagged with “tax return” in the description will.
5. Give ’em what they want
Content on Pinterest has an exceptionally long shelf life. Even a pin posted months ago can easily be discovered by an influencer, or by Pinterest’s own algorithms, and go viral. By creating evergreen content that you know your audience will love, you’re greatly increase the odds that you’ll see higher engagement.
The Hack: Track the pins that are already performing well, and then create similar content. Create follow-up posts, and repin across your boards to amplify the trend. Pinterest’s analytics suite offers a few tools to help identify high-performing pins, but to get a full range of data you’ll probably need to use a third-party service. As it happens, advanced tracking pin-performance data is a key piece of what we do here at Tailwind.
6. Steal from the competition
There’s no better way to grow your Pinterest following than by building strong relationships with people who are already looking for your product or service. And there’s no better way to do that than to win over your competition’s biggest fans.
The Hack: Visit your competitor’s Pinterest page, and check out their most active fans. This is easy to do. Just visit pinterest.com/source/[yourcompetitorsdomain.com] and start looking around. In the example below, we’ve entered “pinterest.com/source/target.com” to find who’s recently pinned from Target. From there, it’s just a matter of connecting with those power-pinners and letting them know how awesome you are!
7. Connect with your influencers
Do you know the names of your biggest Pinterest fans? These are people who regularly pin content from your site, and help to drive your Pinterest traffic. By connecting with these pinners directly, you can turn them from mere fans into true brand advocates.
The Hack: Unlock your Pinterest analytics by verifying your site, and use those reports to identify the boards with the highest engagement. From there, it’s easy to find and connect with great influencers for your market. You can also connect with these pinners by using Pinterest’s guided search, keeping an eye out for popular boards related to your business.
Alternatively, you can also find pinners based on top performing pins in the Tailwind dashboard. If a pin from your site has hundreds, or even thousands, of repins, there’s a good chance someone influential pinned it. Click through on the pin to see who pinned it:
8. Cross-promote your content to expand your reach
The great thing about content created specifically for Pinterest is that it’s easy to reuse. Image-based content tends to perform well on almost every social media platform, making your already great pins perfect for sharing on Instagram, Facebook, Google+ and Twitter.
The Hack: Connect your accounts. Pin content from your Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and Instagram accounts. When you share content on those platforms, don’t forget to share your pins. This kind of cross-promotion can have a significant impact across all of your social networks. Need an easy way to pin from Instagram? Just sync your Instagram account with your Tailwind dashboard.
9. Run a contest
If there’s one thing that is guaranteed to generate instant interest in a product or brand, it’s a contest. Unlike more forgiving platforms like Twitter or Instagram, however, Pinterest has strict rules about what it will and won’t allow. A “Pin to win” style contest can all too easily result in your account being frozen (the dreaded “Pinterest jail“).
The Hack: Launch a creativity-driven contest with a trusted Pinterest partner. Not only do these kinds of contests remain well within Pinterest’s brand guidelines, but they also tend to perform well. If there’s one thing most pinners have in common, it’s creativity.
10. Pin regularly, and around the clock
What’s the single biggest secret to seeing steady success in your Pinterest marketing efforts? Creating a pinning schedule. Not only does this allow you to create a steady stream of content for your followers, but by pinning around the clock you can reach a truly global community.
The Hack: Get a pin-scheduling app. Pinterest doesn’t have pin scheduling natively, making it difficult to create a truly automated schedule. Using Tailwind, for instance, allows you create fully optimized pinning calendars and easily schedule repins of your content to multiple boards. You can even track the results using our built-in analytics tools.
However, even if you do not use Tailwind for pin scheduling, make sure you’re using a Pinterest Marketing Developer partner and not a tool that schedules using your password. Giving away your password puts your Pinterest account and your bank account in danger with Buyable pins on the market now.
11. Include your pins in a newsletter
If you already have a regular email newsletter, you also have a fantastic tool for growing your Pinterest traffic. Those users who are opening, reading, and clicking on your newsletters are already interested in what you have to say, so why not show them what you’re doing on Pinterest? Highlight your popular pins or a seasonally appropriate board in your next email.
The Hack: You want to make it as simple as possible for your newsletter readers to share your content, right? It’s simple to create an “add pin” pop-up in your email to enable simple sharing. All you need to do is go to the image you would like to promote on your website, and click the “pin it” button or your browser extension:
Once you’ve clicked to create a pin, the pop-up to create a pin will appear. From there, all you need to do is grab the URL in that pop-up window:
Use that link either on an image in your email newsletter or in a text link. When someone clicks on it, the window will open enabling them to pin the image with one click. Seriously – just click here to try it!
By putting these tricks and tips to use in your Pinterest marketing efforts, you’ll quickly see very real results. What other advice do you have for growing your Pinterest marketing presence? Let us know in the comments!
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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.