Pinterest has quickly become my favorite platform. It took me some time to really crack it’s code, but I can now say it is one of my blog’s top referrals. You see, the trick is to re-think how you use Pinterest. Up until recently, I had been using Pinterest as a way to save ideas. I’d plan out my meals, outfits and home renovations on different boards. I never thought to use it for my business. Now, I’m branding with Pinterest!
A lot of people think of Pinterest as a social media platform. And that sort of thinking will keep you from using it to its full potential. For me, the shift happened once I started thinking of Pinterest as a search engine. That’s right, just like Google. People go to Pinterest to search for ideas. And when they find ideas they like, they save them or click through to read more about them. Oh, and those people I’m talking about…they’re your ideal clients. Whoa! Game changer! I know. That’s why I want to teach you how to optimize your Pinterest to capture that audience.
Branding with Pinterest! Below are a few changes I made to my Pinterest account to start seeing more web traffic/engagement from my ideal audience:
Remember, we’re branding with Pinterest. So, make sure your account name reflects your brand. Include your brand name and a couple of keywords that illustrate what you offer. For example, my Pinterest name reads “loeyllc.com | authentic branding + social media tips“. It’s branded and shows what kind of content you can expect from my account.
This is a super easy fix. You’re page is representing your brand. And you want your brand to have a professional image. Albeit, it should show your brand voice (personality/style/essence). But it shouldn’t be a mirror-selfie from the bathroom at your school library. Choose a clear, high-quality head shot that represents you and your brand. If you need some ideas, I have an entire board dedicated to brand photo shoot inspo!
You have to make sure your bio captures your audience. It’s the first thing they see, right above the fold, and it needs to make them want to stick around. So, here is a formula to get you started. Begin with what you do, who you help and how. What/who/how. I am a [what] and I help/inspire/encourage/teach/etc. [who] by doing [how]. Then, finish off with a quick call to action. Capture them further by leading them to a free opt-in or to your private FB group. Here is an example of my bio:
Business page and rich pins
If you haven’t already, switching your page to a business account is a huge game changer. Along with that, make sure to activate rich pins. This combo will allow your posts to share directly from your site and will include your URL in the post description. It automatically posts your blog title, description and URL to each pin. Here are some quick tutorials to set up a business account and activate rich pins. Once you do that, your pins will look like this!
Fun fact: when you’re posting a blog on our site and setting your “featured image”, you can type your Pinterest description in the box for “alt text”. That way, if anyone were to pin your post directly from your site, your description will post along with it.
Clean up boards
Remember when I said we need to start thinking of Pinterest as a search engine. Here is where that comes in. Branding with Pinterest involves optimizing your account in order to draw more web traffic and engagement from your ideal audience. They aren’t going to your page to see hair tutorials and recipes (unless you are a hair stylist or food blogger). They’re coming to learn about what you’re an expert in, those two keyword we added to your account title. So, here’s what to do! Take all of the boards that ARE NOT on brand and make them secret. You can still use Pinterest to find recipes and DIY ideas, but your audience doesn’t need to see them. Then, for all the boards you keep, start optimizing their titles and descriptions to be more on brand.
Gone are the days of your cute, quirky, punny board titles. They aren’t doing their job. Now it’s time to start thinking about what keywords resonate with your ideal clients. What are they searching for on Pinterest? Once you figure that out, use those words in your board titles. Create new boards centered around those topics. Turn your page into a one-stop-shop for everything your ideal audience needs to know about what YOU offer. That’s branding with Pinterest!
Optimize blog posts
This part is tedious and requires a lot of patience but it is SO worth it. In fact, it’s absolutely necessary. You already have plenty of online content, I’m sure. What a waste it would be if you optimized your entire account and didn’t optimize your existing blogs, too! Here’s what you need to do to each of your existing posts:
- SEO keywords: I like to search Pinterest for what my blog post is about and see what comes up first. The initial results are what people are searching for most. It’s best to try and use those keywords in your title, throughout your post and as your focus keyword. I use this plugin for each blog post to help me optimize keywords.
- Branded images: Create a branded template using the same colors and fonts. Then, use that template to create an original image for each post. I use this site to make all my graphics. For Pinterest, it’s best to create vertical images.
- Share, share, share: Once you’re done updating your post with keywords and images, share to your Pinterest. Make sure you have a board dedicated just for your blog content, like this. Also, install this plugin so that you and readers can pin directly from your posts. Share your posts to every one of your boards (where it’s applicable) directly from your website. With the new Pinterest algorithm, your followers aren’t seeing everything you post. They only see what is relevant to them. Much like the Google search engine algorithm. So pin as many times as you can to get that “shared number” up!
I’ve signed up for a service to help keep my boards populated. It has saved me a TON of time! I pin for an hour or two, once a week, and BoardBooster does the rest!
I also took this course by Melyssa Griffin. She knows it ALL when it comes to Pinterest.
I know this may seem like a ton of work. And I’m not going to lie to you, it kind of is. BUT if you space it out and have some patience with the process, you’ll soon be reaping the benefits of branding with Pinterest. I’m putting together some stats of my web traffic before and after optimizing my account, so stay tuned for that! If you’re looking to boost your web traffic and engagement, Pinterest might be the next step you need to take in order to up level.