*This post got to be a little longer than I originally planned, so I made a .pdf of it that you can grab below if you like. You’ll be added to the Grow Your Blog Idea newsletter where you’ll receive a monthly email from me with blogging advice.
Pinterest accounts for nearly half of my blog’s traffic, which is why I love it so much. And since I love it so much I wanted to share with you what my Pinterest strategy is and how I use Pinterest to help leverage my traffic. (To get your Google Analytics to look like mine below, you can download this template here.)
Most of what I learned about Pinterest is from the course, Elite Blog Academy which only opens a couple of times a year and was the first big investment I made in my blog (I paid for the course before my blog was even earning $20 a month!) and it’s more than paid for itself. I highly encourage you to take EBA when it opens up because it will give you the knowledge you need not only to use Pinterest like a pro but to blog like a pro. You can find more about EBA here.
If you’re completely new to pinning then you’ll need to know what to do in order to optimize your pins so here’s a quick breakdown (more in-depth details are a part of EBA, Ruth Soukup’s book How to Blog for Profit without Selling Your Soul and Abby Lawson’s book Building a Framework.)
- Vertical Pins (at least 1,000 x 1,500 in size)
- Compelling descriptions
- Consistent Branding (more on this below)
- Use of SEO keywords (Pinterest wants to be a go-to source like Google so make sure your pins and descriptions use SEO tactics to help with search results)
- Make sure you have a “Best of Board” for all your site’s pins and to make it the first board that appears on your Pinterest profile. Example: http://pinterest.com/thebudgetmama
When it comes to your pins, you want to keep them consistent. Meaning you want people to recognize your pins immediately on Pinterest as yours without even looking at the watermark or site name. To create this consistent branding you’ll need to pick 2-3 fonts that you use regularly for your pins.
I know it might seem boring to limit yourself to only a couple of fonts but it works wonders for building your brand’s presence. And, not to mention it makes creating pins faster because you’re not wasting time experimenting with a dozen different fonts.
Where to Get Stock Photos
There are a dozen places out there to get stock photos, but I’ll be honest with you, I don’t like paying more than I have to for quality images. So, the two sites that I primarily use are Pixabay and Canva, but I wanted to include a few others in this list as well because other bloggers have recommended them to me several times.
Olyiva.co has even more stock photo sites listed that she regularly updates that you can check out here. You can even hire photographers on sites like Fiverr to take stock photos for you if you can’t find what you’re looking for.
Okay, so once you get the whole creating and developing awesome pins thing down, it’s time to start pinning, but in order to maximize your reach you’re going to need to join as many group boards (sometimes called collaborative boards) as possible.
A group board is a pinner’s board that they’ve opened up to other pinners where everyone that is named a pinner can pin to. You’ll know if a board is a group board by the multiple people icon next to the board name. (See in the screen shot below my “I am Catholic” board has the multiple people icon next to the name? That’s how you know it’s a group board.)
To find group boards you can join FB groups like this one (note, I’m not the admin of this group so I have no control over who is approved and who is not) where you can request to be approved to several group boards.
I suggest finding at least two group boards for each category that you blog in. So, for example if you blog about crafts, food, and motherhood you’d want to find at least 6 boards to join with 2 in the crafts niche, 2 in the food niche, and 2 in the motherhood niche. And then as you become more and more comfortable pinning, I suggest finding as many group boards as you possibly can within your blog topics.
Right now, on average I pin 98-105 pins a day. Yes, I said a day. I know that may seem crazy to some but that’s how I’ve been able to increase my page views. But, here’s the thing, I don’t pin these pins manually. That would take an insane amount of time and I just don’t have that much time on my hands. So, I use BoardBooster for scheduling and I love it. There are several other scheduling sites out there that you can use so you definitely don’t have to stick with BB but I do recommend you try their free trial (plans start at $5 a month)
Now, my exact process was created for me by my friend Rosemarie of The Busy Budgeter. She’s a Pinterest consultant and once you get comfortable pinning and using Boardbooster, you may want to consider having her help you develop a solid strategy that fits your blog’s particular needs, but it’s definitely not necessary. I just struggled figuring how a solid strategy on my own.
I schedule all my like pins (Thrifty, Money, Food, Marriage, etc.) onto secret category boards through the scheduler tool in BB. Then I schedule for all my group boards to pin from those niche boards. So, when I pin from my blog, I just pin onto my secret niche board that is relevant to the pin topic and it is automatically scheduled to go out those particular boards I have pinning from that niche board. (If this is completely confusing you, don’t worry. If it wasn’t for Rosemarie I would never have figured this out on my own. If you want her help with this, email her at: email@example.com )
I then track within Boardbooster’s stats what times are better for pinning to each group board and adjust their times as necessary. And once a month, I head into BB to clean up any pins that just aren’t performing well.
I know this may seem like a lot so definitely take you time learning the ropes of Pinterest first. This is has been how I’ve been able to be successful with increasing my page views through Pinterest and I know that it can prove to be successful for you as well!
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