If you are a newbie on Pinterest (like I am) and you’re still struggling with that platform, feeling lost or stuck in one place, you’ll want to read this post. I want to show you how I managed to grow my Pinterest account from 3K to 7 MILLION monthly viewers within only 3 MONTHS, without any courses! There’s no magic to it, nor is there any hidden holy grail for this to achieve. It’s actually very simple.
When I was setting up my account on Pinterest I had absolutely no idea how to use it properly. I knew that I was supposed to create boards and pin content to those boards, but that would be all. I managed to reach 3K monthly viewers and I had only 9 followers for quite a long time! So what I did within the first few days after setting up my account was looking for information and guidance over the Internet. I read A LOT about how best to utilise this platform and I was gradually implementing all those tips, bit by bit, onto my blogging account.
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GROWING YOUR PINTEREST CAN HELP YOUR BLOG!
By the end of January Pinterest gave me an amazing surprise! One of my pins went viral and as a result my blog daily page views skyrocketed overnight from only 200 to 1000, and then to 1500 the day after. If you want to see how that happened you can ready it HERE. It happened only 2 and a half months after joining Pinterest! I had 2.3 million monthly viewers at that stage and only about 500 followers on Pinterest.
Today when I’m writing this post (26 days later), I have 7.5 million monthly viewers and about 700 followers. Since then my blog has been getting a steady flow of traffic, between 500 – 700 (on average) even if I don’t promote my posts on any other social media platforms. I’m honestly impressed how fast my account has been growing and how little effort it’s required.
7 MILLION MONTHLY VIEWERS – IN ONLY 3 MONTHS
Let me walk you through the whole journey I’ve made since joining Pinterest a little bit over 3 months ago. I want to share with you everything I’ve learnt so far and what helped my profile (and my blog) grow.
First of all I strongly recommend you switch to a business account because this will give you access to all the analytics of your profile. Once you’ve done that, you should also verify your website. You can find information how to do it HERE.
SET UP YOUR PINTEREST PROFILE FOR SUCCESS
Your profile is your “business card”
In order to attract your potential followers you should do your best to make it look professional and inviting. It’s also extremely beneficial to ensure that it’s SEO-friendly. Yes! SEO on Pinterest. This platform is a search engine after all. But don’t be discouraged! I promise that it isn’t as difficult as it sounds. Here’s a few simple steps how to set up your Pinterest profile (including SEO):
Expand your Pinterest name by adding a few words which will act like key words for potential followers. So for example my profile name is: “Fit & Classy | Lifestyle Blogger & Photographer“. In the first part I give the name of my blog (which already has two keywords in it “fit” and “classy”). The second sentence has a keyword “lifestyle”, “blogger” and “photographer”. So my profile should be fairly easy to be found when people type in these keywords in the search bar.
Include a brief description of your profile. I’ve read in a few different places that it’s extremely powerful to say how your blog can help other people. It definitely sounds very inviting to me. Also make sure that you provide your blog’s URL and the country from which you’re blogging.
Most people are visuals and Pinterest is a visual tool, so first thing they will look at when visiting your profile is of course your photo. Upload a good quality photo optimised for Pinterest (600 x 600 pixels. Here’s a Pinterest Cheat Sheet for Image Sizes if you need any further help). Needless to say, blurred photos are big “no!”. It’s also recommended to choose a friendly face photo instead of a logo, as people tend to follow other people more often than typical business accounts.
This is something you’d want to do when you already have some boards set up. You can use up to 5 boards to showcase the best of your Pinterest profile. Those would be displayed in a form of a carousel at the top of your profile. You can easily set that up in your Profile Settings.
Start by setting up at least 10 boards on your profile. You can create more, but for the beginning this would be a good minimum. Make sure they are relevant to your niche (you can create secret boards for anything else like more personal stuff which you wouldn’t like to mix together with your blog-related topics). Write a description of each of your boards including lots of keywords (you can simply list keywords relevant to the board, separated by comas). To start with, re-pin at least 10 pins into each of those boards.
Create one board dedicated solely to your blog and name it “Best of [name of your blog]”. Place it as the first board on your list. This is where you should be pinning all your pins directly from your blog, and then from this board, you can share your pins to other boards and group boards. Now, that’s a required minimum which should give your profile a professional look.
Brand your Pinterest profile by designing COVERS for your boards. I had mixed feelings about that idea at first, but the word “brand” convinced me to do it. And actually I think it really works! I have a strong impression that since I made those covers, I keep getting more followers. I would have to investigate it in more details though. My board covers are 800 x 800 px, 72dpi (designed in Photoshop, but you can easily create them in Canva too). Here’s a link to my Pinterest profile if you’d like to see what it looks like now.
DESIGN EYE-CATCHING HIGH QUALITY PINS
Think for a moment. What type of pins usually catch your eye? What pins make you click on them and re-pin them into one of your boards? If you know the answer – this is how you should design your own pins.
Let me give you a few tips here:
CREATE VERTICAL PINS
According to many sources longer pins are more attractive on Pinterest than the square or horizontal ones. The optimum size for a good pin is minimum 735 px wide x 1102 px long (height can be adjusted). My pins are usually 735 x 1200 px, 72dpi. Don’t go too crazy with the length though. From what I’ve learnt, Pinterest is cropping the preview of those never-ending-long pins already. No need for an essay anyway. You don’t have to provide ALL the information on a poster – it should be enough to make the reader curious and encourage him to click on your link to find out more.
USE OVERLAYS, TEXT & COLOURS
Pins are like digital posters, they should have a heading which stands out and invites the potential reader. That’s why it’s good to use large simple fonts, which are easy to read. Also always make sure that the heading on your pin tells the reader clearly what they can expect to find in your blog article. Clear and simple, yet eye-catching and inviting.
Too many colours may be too distracting, so the general rule is to choose max 3 and work on them. Remember that they should nicely match together (for example I would never use a red font on a pink background because it’s very difficult to read and it hurts the eye…). I’ve also read from many sources that warm colours are more attractive on Pinterest.
BRAND YOUR PINS
How to do it? That’s a whole separate topic and I’m not an expert in it. However I’ve found a very informative article about that here: How To Choose The Best Colors And Fonts For Your Brand. I hope it helps. Also remember to always include your blog URL on all your pins.
I use Photoshop for designing my pins and I always save them as .png using the option “save for web” thanks to which my pins also contain metadata such as copyright and contact information. However if you’re not familiar with Photoshop, I can suggest you try Canva. I use it occasionally too. It’s a free tool which has loads of free photos and fonts, and it already has templates optimised for various social media, which you can edit whichever way you want, so you don’t have to worry about proper size or resolution.
ENABLE RICH PINS
This seems to scare some people as they think it’s really difficult to do, however enabling them is fairly easy and extremely valuable towards your Pinterest following growth.
Rich pins are basically pins which also display additional information directly from your blog article. So by enabling rich pins you make sure that info from your post is there attached to your pin every time someone re-pins your pin, even if that person enters his/her own description. That’s pretty cool, isn’t it?
Quick guide how to enable Rich Pins:
IMPORTANT: In order to enable rich pins you need to have a wordpress.org self-hosted blog. If you don’t have a self-hosted blog yet but are considering that, I strongly recommend you choosing HostGator as a hosting company. It’s great value for money, their interface is extremely user-friendly and their service and customer support is absolutely amazing!
Install Yoast SEO Plugin – Rich pins require having meta tags enabled on your blog. This plugin will do it for you. Once you’ve installed it, make sure that “Advanced settings pages” switch is on “enabled” and it should work.
Validate your Rich Pins – it’s very simple. Go to Rich Pin Validator and paste an URL of one of your blog posts (it doesn’t matter which one). Hit “Validate”. Follow the instructions given on that site. You might need to arm yourself with patience though because it takes up to a few days for Pinterest to approve your application.
PIN, RE-PIN, PIN, RE-PIN – REPEAT!
That’s exactly what I’ve been doing from the first day when I joined Pinterest. I was pinning like crazy. Mostly pins from others and a little bit of my own. They say that the perfect balance should be 20% of your own pins and 80% of others. I honestly have no idea what was the balance on my account. I was pinning in the morning, during any break I had throughout the day, on the train back from work, at home every now and again and before going to sleep. I loved it! I was looking for high quality content most of the time and I was definitely pinning most of others’ pins, not mine. I only started pinning more of my own stuff, when I had more pins ready and when I joined a few group boards.
Many times I hear that people don’t know how to use Pinterest properly. I didn’t know it eather. I simply USED IT! As much and as often as I could. I was pinning and re-pinning A LOT and it definitely helped me get some exposure and become noticed on that platform. So don’t be scared to experiment a little. You’ll learn everything on the go!
At the moment my activity on Pinterest looks more or less like this:
- When I publish a new post, first thing I do is pinning my pin to my Best Of My Blog board. This is the place from which I re-pin my pins to other boards / group boards later. I have organised my boards in a way that I can share each of my pins to more than one of those, eg. pin about a leg workout can be shared to both my Fitness board and my Leg & Booty board.
- I schedule about 40–50 of my own pins a day (or sometimes every second day). Mainly to group boards, but sometimes also to my own boards. (I keep an Excel spreadsheet with all my pins and group boards which helps me to avoid spamming repetition).
- Every day I re-share (or schedule) at least one pin from the group boards I’m a member of (that makes about 20–30 pins).
- Every second or third day I schedule a few of my pins to Tribes on Tailwind and I re-share a few pins from other members of those Tribes (I write more about the benefits of using this app at the end of this post).
- Additionally during the day I also sometimes re-pin whatever I find attractive on Pinterest in general.
Can I share the same pin multiple times?
Yes, you can share the same pin multiple times to your boards and to group boards (unless stated otherwise in the group board description). However you should make sure that you give it enough time space so that it doesn’t look spammy. You can also design a few different pins for one blog article which is also very beneficial. I write more about it in my post about how one of my pins went viral HERE.
JOIN GROUP BOARDS
Group boards are extremely valuable for your Pinterest growth and exposure and honestly they helped me a lot! It was when I joined a few group boards that my Pinterest started growing. You can be a member of as many group boards as you want but remember that by pinning your stuff to those boards you should also share other contributors’ pins from those boards, so I wouldn’t go too crazy with joining too many. I’m a member of about 30 right now and to me this seems like a maximum number which I can handle.
How to find group boards and how to join them?
There’s two ways you can find them:
- Visit one of your follower’s profile and see if they are members of any group boards. If they are, click on that group board and read a description. Usually the description clearly states what to do in order to be accepted as a contributor (most of the time it’s enough to follow the owner of the group board and let that person know either by email or private message on Pinterest that you are interested in joining the group board).
- Go to www.pingroupie.com where you can find a list of Pinterest group boards grouped according to different categories.
You can also CREATE YOUR OWN GROUP BOARDS. Doing this can significantly speed up your Pinterest following growth. If your account and your group board is attractive, you might expect a lot of new followers because this is one of the requirements to be accepted as a group board contributor. Make sure you write a clear description of the group board (including hashtags) and specify what are the requirements in order to become a contributor.
I have two group boards open for contributors:
If you’d like to join any of my group boards, please follow my account at @fitannclassy and send me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with your request and clear information which group board you would like to join (providing link to your Pinterest account). Please read a description of my group boards before deciding to join.
JOIN FACEBOOK GROUPS
Facebook groups are a great place for networking, getting help and support on your blogging journey and for promoting your blog. There’s so many different groups you can choose from. Not all of them are good but it’s up to you which seem most suitable for you. What I can suggest, from my own experience, is try joining various types of groups: general blogging support groups and also groups dedicated solely to Pinterest where you’d be able to share your pins and your group boards (when looking for new contributors). One of the groups which I find very helpful especially for Pinterest is Simple Pin Pinterest Strategy Group.
This is the cherry on top of my Pinterest cake! Tailwind is my real game changer! I joined Tailwind in the middle of December 2017 and since then I’ve noticed a significant increase in my reach.
What is more, thanks Tailwind scheduling I got my first ever viral pin and since then my whole existence on Pinterest has been given a totally new meaning (lol).
In my post about How My Daily Blog Page Views Skyrocketed Overnight From 200 To 1000 And To 1500 The Day After I explain how that happened in more details.
What I love most about Tailwind:
In Tailwind you can schedule as many pins as you want. This app will suggest you best time slots for pinning your content (based on your stats), however you can add your own slots or remove some if you wish. All ofyour scheduled pins will be visible in a special board, where you can shuffle them or manually move them around if you want to.
Right now I schedule about 40-50 of my own pins and about 20 pins of other Pinterest users (on average). I also pin manually during the day whenever I feel like it.
Click here to GET A FREE MONTH OF TAILWIND
You can create lists of group boards and schedule your pin to the whole group with only one click. While doing that you can choose the interval at which you wish the pin to be published. I find it very handy because thanks to this tool my pins will not look spammy, they will be published at a certain distance from each other.
Tailwind comes with the whole bunch of analytics tools. It gives you insights to your domain page and to your brand page, including profile and board insights.
Tribes are like group boards but within Tailwind itself. They also have their own rules but what makes them different from group boards is the fact that you don’t have to follow anyone in order to be accepted. Some of them are open and you join them with only one click. To some other you have to apply to be accepted. The general rule in Tribes is that for every pin you submit, you should re-share at least one pin from other members of the Tribe.
Tribes give you extra exposure and boost your reach so I strongly recommend you join a few. With the basic plan you can join 5 of them. If you need more, you can add a PowerUp.
One thing which I also like in Tribes very much is the possibility to see the popularity of your pins (see the blue bar at the top right corner of the pin). You can also see who re-shared your pins and how often they’ve been shared.
You can also join my Tribe which I’ve recently set up for lifestyle bloggers. To join my Tribe simply click on the link below:
Joining my Tribe will also automatically give you 1 month free of Tailwind.
KEEP PINNING – CONSISTENCY IS THE KEY!
You’re all set now so the rest is up to you. Keep pinning, or scheduling your pins. And remember to organise your pins in a way that it doesn’t look spammy, so don’t share two of the same pins in one board one after another. Space them all nicely instead. And don’t be afraid to experiment.
Last but not least:
Use keyword descriptions. When pinning your pins, always include a description rich in key words. If you’re not sure what keywords are popular on Pinterest, simply start typing in any word in the search bar on that platform and you’ll get a few hints instantly. Pinterest also has an option of using hashtags however I personally haven’t noticed whether hashtags are as important as they are on Instagram. I try to include 3 – 5 hashtags together with my pin description, just in case, because I believe including them doesn’t do any harm, but it might as well help.
Include social sharing buttons on your blog. And it’s also good to have at least one pinnable image within your blog post. This way you are giving your visitors a possibility to share your content directly from your blog.
All of the above tips and tools have helped me to get where I am right now. I really hope it can help you grow your Pinterest profile as well.
Feel free to ask me questions in a comment if you have any. I’ll try to answer as best as I can.