Today, I want to help those content creators who so happen to write content for their business (or someone else's!). As I say time and time again, content always needs to be helpful to the person designed to read or watch it and this is how a lot of businesses are able to drive eyes to their websites.
I firmly believe that having a blog on your businesses website is an amazing way for you to drive people to your website. Not just because it will help people to see the types of products/services that you have to offer, but because you have the chance to show people exactly how your products/services can be used to help make their lives better in some way. In my professional opinion, this is where the power of blogging as a business truly lies. It's why influencers are so powerful. They show people who products enrich their lives and why these same products can enrich their readers/viewers lives, too.
You can use your content to influence people's buying decisions, but you have to do so in a way that is more helpful than it is sales-y.
This is where Pinterest comes in...
If you pair your businesses website with the power of Pinterest, you will be able to consistently drive traffic to your website and ultimate, increase your sales.
Did you know that there are over 150 million active Pinterest users every single month? 81% of these users are women and 84% of users on the platform use it across multiple devices. What does all of this mean for small business owners? It makes sense to not only be on Pinterest but to put the time, energy and (sometimes) money into making sure that you get the traction that so many are getting from the platform (me included).
So if you want to learn how to use Pinterest for business...these are my tips specifically for Business Owners looking to use Pinterest to drive traffic to their websites.
1 | Get (or switch to) a Pinterest for Business Account
If you're going to really get the most out of Pinterest, you're going to need a Business profile. There are a lot of complicated and nuanced reasons for why you should have a business account but for me, it all boils down to one thing. Analytics. Being able to see which pins are doing particularly well on your profile and what is being pinned from your website and saved on Pinterest is absolutely vital. It tells you the format of Pin that is getting people's attention (font types, colours, subjects etc) and it will tell you what type of content people are really liking of yours and pinning (so you can create more of it). Social examiner wrote a detailed post about exactly how to do it here.
2 | Fill Out Your Profile
You'll need the regular things like a profile picture (either one of yourself or one with your logo) and your name which you will fill out under 'Business Name'. When it comes to your business name, I would include your business name AND a keyword associated with your business name. If your business name is Birch & Oak and you create custom wood carvings, List your business name as Birch & Oak | Custom Wood Artwork. That way, when people are searching for 'custom wood artwork' on Pinterest, your name will also come up along with pins.
Then, choose a username that is as close to your business name for ease of use.
Fill out your about section so that people who stumble across your profile will quickly understand what you and your business are all about. This is another place for you to include keywords, so again, people who are searching for things related to your business will find you and it's also a place where you can out things like coupon codes, free offers etc. Be mindful though, there is a limit of 160 characters so practice being concise!
You'll also get space to include your location and your URL and one of the coolest features that business accounts get...a showcase. A 'showcase' on Pinterest is where you can feature up to 5 boards of your choosing to 'rotate' at the top of your profile. It's a great way for you to feature your boards in particular for anyone who happens across your profile and quickly lets them know what they can expect from your page. You can read more about 'showcases' from Pinterest themselves here.
3 | Create Boards With The Type of Person Who Is Your Ideal Customer In Mind
If you sell home decor items and you target moms, you'll want to have the obvious home decor boards, but think about other things that moms also care about and create boards around those things. That way, when someone lands on your profile who happens to be someone who is your target customer, they will have a reason to stick around on your profile for a while.
Example: if you sell to moms, create boards that moms would find useful. Things like recipes, kid-related articles, cleaning tips (as a mom, I'm always looking for how to clean this and protect that) etc. The point of board creation is to give those who happen to stumble across your business profile an idea of what your business is all about. At a glance, someone new to your page should get it.
When creating your boards, ask yourself this question: Would my target customer find information on this board helpful? If yes, you know you're creating the right board.
Boards also give you ample places for you to place the pins you create that direct back to your website. As I mentioned in this blog post, keep in mind that 80% of what you post should be other people's pins, 20% yours. Don't forget to include boards that would neatly house pins that you'll create for your website or content. If you have a home decor business, include a board that is named after your business where you can have a collection of pins exclusive to your business.
How many boards should you have? I suggest more than 5 but less than 20, not including group boards.
4 | Create Pins
If you're already blogging, you're already ahead of the game. All you need to do is make sure that the things that you Pin onto Pinterest are the type of graphics that do well on the platform. Adding text to your pins will help give your pins context when people are quickly making decisions about whether they want to click on a pin and through to its link or not.
Three 'best pinning practices' to keep in mind:
- Make sure your Pins are VERTICAL (long and skinnier, like the graphic for this post above). They take up more real estate and translate better on mobile devices.
- You should be making at least 2 versions of a pin for each blog post that you (or someone you hire) creates. This is because different types of graphics standout to different types of people. Creating more than one pin ensures that you get maximum exposure for your content (you don't have to start doing it right away, but work up to it as soon as you are able).
- Your Pin description should be made up of the types of words and phrases that someone looking for your type of product/service would be searching for. For example, if you sell jewelry, using works like 'women's jewelry' or 'holiday jewelry' are a good start.
Now, even if you don't create blog content for your website, you can still benefit from Pinterest. Since it's a picture-based platform, you can create pins, upload them directly to Pinterest and link the photos to the product page for the picture. Don't just upload a single product shot. No one likes that and even fewer will click to see more (which is the point, right). Showcase products the way you would on Instagram, with other products or people and be sure to include words and more than one version of your pin.
It's now easier than ever to create pins for your blog. Everyone and their mother talks about Canva and it's for good reason. Canva is where non-designers can create really fantastic looking pins (their free version is really good and actually good enough for many and their 'For Work' paid version is even better and has a lot of time-saving options that you'll love if you upgrade - free trial available). They have easy to use templates and when you're feeling comfortable, you can create custom ones free hand! As I mentioned, they have pre-made templates that you can use, but if you'd prefer to make someone from scratch, get really creative and make something really unique. Click here to check out Canva and sign up for a free account.
5 | Join Group Boards
Now that you have your own boards, pinned other content and you have created a few pins of your own, it's time to start looking for and joining 'Group Boards' I explain the rationale behind group boards in this post here, but in a nutshell, it's a board where the owner of it allows others to pin their content to it. Group boards are an awesome way to gain exposure and traction to your content and increase the likelihood that one of your pins go viral.
Each group board has its own rules for how to get added and what you need to do once you allowed to pin, but in general, the rule is to repin at least one pin from the board for every pin that you put on it. It can be time-consuming, but it's worth it because this is exactly how your pins get repinned, how your content gets more exposure and just as important, how you don't get kicked off of being a contributor to the board.
6 | Sign Up For Tailwind
Tailwind in it's simplest form is a Pinterest scheduler. It will pin pins on your behalf so you can spend valuable time doing other things. I absolutely love Tailwind not only because it saves me time, but it makes it so easy to actually get the most out of the platform and I credit it to me finally getting to see the results in increased traffic that everyone always talks about.
Tailwind allows you to:
Set a schedule for when your pins 'go live' on Pinterest
Optimize your pin schedule for you when they are most likely to be seen
Get even more analytic information to help you better plan your Pinterest strategy
Easily allows you to understand how your profile is doing week after week so you can make improvements to drive more people to your website
You can toggle when your pins go out so your newest content has a longer life
And a lot more...
The best part? Tailwind will allow you to try out the power of their pinning scheduler for free with your first 100 pins free (no time limit) and if you use my affiliate link here, you'll get a $15 credit that you can use to pay for a monthly or annual plan!
7 | Get really serious about it (Bonus Tip)
This is probably the most important piece of advice I can give. Pinterest is not something that you can master in only 5 minutes a day. You have to put in the time if you really want to reap the benefits that it can have for your business. People aren't getting most of their traffic from Pinterest by accident anymore. It happens because of deliberate actions that they are taking day in and day out to see the results that they really want. Be ready to dedicate at least 10+ hours a week focused on Pinterest growth in the beginning. Even if you're used to pinning your favourite recipes and DIYs that you want to try, Pinning to generate traffic is a whole other animal. As you get better, you won't need to dedicate as much time, but there will be on-going maintenance to continue to get the results that you desire.
The great thing about Pinterest is that you'll start seeing results in as little as a week which is great. I mean, how many times as a business owner do you get to see almost instant results for hard work put in?
Grab my FREE CHECKLIST to take with you so you can start your Pinterest account or make some adjustments so you can finally start reaping some of the benefits of this amazing platform!
I want the Pinterest For Business Checklist:
If your plate is already really full but you still want to reap the amazing benefits that come with having a Pinterest Brand Strategy, I'm now accepting clients for my Pinterest Brand Management Service. You can find more information about what that covers here.
What kind of business do you have? Do you think it would do well on Pinterest?
Don't forget to join my Pinterest Board for Business Owners here and start pinning away!