Pinterest isn’t just for wedding planning or recipe collections. It can also be a really powerful business tool when used correctly. While creatives and visual service providers oftentimes spend most of their energy on Instagram or Facebook, Pinterest is an underutilized and overlooked tool. Most folks don’t understand that Pinterest isn’t a social media platform — it’s actually a search engine. Once you grasp that concept, mastering Pinterest becomes a whole lot easier and manageable.
Currently, Pinterest accounts for about 44% of my website traffic. That’s a huge number — almost half of my traffic to my site! Not only has Pinterest been great for sending folks to my website, but I’ve also seen my email list grow exponentially from Pinterest. Once you dive deeper into Pinterest and grasp how it works it’s easy to build a following and start seeing results.
Perfect for visual service providers like branding and web designers, photographers, and other artists, Pinterest is a great platform for promoting visual work. Since it isn’t a social media network, it’s a visual search engine. That means that Pinterest uses keywords and keyword phrases to help users find the content they’re searching for. It’s basically like a young, hip Google that values beautiful vertical photos or graphics — something that comes easy to us creatives. With a bit more understanding of keywords and search engines we can easily grasp Pinterest and start to see fast results.
Automation is the word every entrepreneur wants to hear! Automation helps us take our time back and represents efficiency. With Pinterest, it’s very easy to implement a batch and automate workflow that won’t take you much time and will yield results. For me, I’ll batch all of my Pinterest graphics twice a month. This will take me a couple of hours and then I will schedule them in Tailwind and schedule other people’s pins too, looking for a 50/50 split between my original content and content from others. I’ll touch on Tailwind in a bit, but scheduling and automating this process means I only spend a few hours on Pinterest each month and almost half my website traffic comes from there. If that isn’t the peak of efficiency, then I don’t know what is!
Unlike social media where the life of the content is much shorter, Pinterest’s content lifespan is infinite. Just like an article that’s been on the internet for a while with lots of re-shares and views, a Pin does better with time. I know of fellow entrepreneurs whose top pins are some of their oldest ones. As long as the Pin provides relevant information that answers the question of Pinterest’s users, you’re likely to have more than one high-performing Pins and they could be some of your oldest content. Like a fine wine, Pins age with time.
Pinterest is incredible for building your email list or building awareness around a digital product you offer. For me, I sell Showit templates as my low-ticket offer and Pinterest has done wonders for promoting that offer organically. Additionally, I’ve built my email list by offering a freebie related to my area of expertise that was aligned with searches from my ideal client. Even if I didn’t directly convert them to a sale from Pinterest, I am able to add them to my marketing ecosystem
Like with any new business tool, you’ll learn along the way as you start your Pinterest journey. Trial and error is your best friend when learning a new platform. But to give you a little push in the right direction, follow these essential tips for beginners:
It’s crucial to switch from a personal account to a business account for a few reasons, the most important being access to your analytics. Your analytics is a key tool to monitor and observe if your strategies are working or not. Additionally, when you switch to a Business profile you can apply for Rich Pins, which essentially are verified links to your website. Any steps to be more “official” on Pinterest, like these, will bump you up in the algorithm and show the search engine that you’re here to stay and continue serving quality content on Pinterest.
This might sound straight-forward, but it’s crucial for success on Pinterest. Optimizing your profile looks like making sure your boards are relevant to your audience with keywords they’d be searching for. It’s also crucial that you have a couple boards that are only your content and some mixed boards. You’ll also need to optimize your bio for keywords and keyword phrases and add a CTA (call to action) to the end of your bio. People need to know where to go after reading through your amazing bio. The idea is always to redirect them from Pinterest and drive traffic to your own website.
You may be reading all of this and say, “that’s a lot, I feel a bit overwhelmed!” That’s natural anytime we add a new tool to your business kit. Luckily for us there are a slew of resources to help us as we grow with this search engine.
Fellow designer and creative Emmy Jones of Emmygination offers her own Pinterest Course, Pinterest for Designers. From the very basics of Pinterest and how the platform works to automation and tactics behind well-designed Pins, this course covers a lot of ground. This is where I would start if I were just beginning my Pinterest journey for business. I think it’s really important to have a basic understanding of anything before outsourcing it, and Pinterest falls into that category. The course is currently closed for enrollment, but check out Emmy’s blog too as she has lots of freebies and tips on Pinterest.
Beyond Pinterest education, Tailwind is a must-have tool for automation on Pinterest. Tailwind essentially allows you to schedule Pins, from your blog or from other creators, in advance. I love how set-it-and-forget-it this tool is, automation in its finest form! Tailwind allows me to batch my Pins in just a few hours a month so that I can spend more time in my business. In Tailwind, you can also join different “Tailwind Tribes”. These are groups of other people that pin content similar to you so you can all reshare each other’s content and ultimately get more eyes and clicks to your website.
Once you feel secure in your understanding of Pinterest and have learned through trial and error, it could be beneficial to outsource this part of your business. I currently work with Wildroot Marketing, my Pinterest manager and secret weapon. I am so glad that in the beginning of starting my business I spent a lot of time learning Pinterest on my own.
But as my business has grown, I simply don’t have time to do every single task that needs to be done. That’s where my Miranda of Wildroot Marketing comes in. She helps me strategize my Pinterest each month, optimizes my pins, and schedules them using Tailwind. Each month she updates me on my analytics and we re-strategize the next month’s plans based on what has been working and what hasn’t. This has been amazing to free up some time in my business and to have someone to bounce ideas off of.
As you dive off the deep-end with Pinterest, let me know how it’s going! Pinterest is a platform I’ve come to love and it’s really moved the needle in my business. I’m always happy to chat about it and excited for you to play around and grow with it.