Pinterest Strategy for Bloggers: Free 9-Step Guide
I was seriously in the dark about Pinterest. I had no clue how much it drives traffic compared to other social media platforms. But as soon as I found out about the power of Pinterest, I decided to pour some energy into it and the results have been amazing! I'd like to share the exact steps that I took with you below.
I'd like to preface this post/tutorial/explanation with the fact that I am not a Pinterest expert. Not even close. However, I've seen some real traction in just a short space of time and believe in sharing the wealth! You should also know that this post contains affiliate links which keeps my blog running. You can visit this page for more information on my disclosure policy. The summarized version is that I don't recommend any product or service that I haven't personally tried or thoroughly researched.
Without further ado, let's dive right into it!
I learned about the power of Pinterest while taking the course, Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing by Michelle Schroder-Garnder. This course taught me everything I needed to know about making income from my blog. April was my first month earning an income from this blog (around $300 so far, woot) thanks to the strategies I learned in this course. I highlight recommend it!
STEP 1: Additional research on the power of Pinterest
To say that I was intrigued after taking Michelle's course would be an understatement. While I valued the opinion presented about Pinterest, I wanted to know even more about this social media tool. So, I spent a good week, just reading up on it across various websites.
Here is an excerpt from a Hootsuite article that talks about just how explosive Pinterest is:
- The average Pin is Repinned 11 times.
- More than one-third of Pinterest users choose Pinterest over Google search.
- Two-thirds of all Pins are from a business’ website.
- Nearly 2 million people Pin rich product Pins every day.
- The site serves more than 1.5 trillion recommendations annually.
- More than 14 million articles are Pinned daily.
Still not convinced? I felt the same. I thought, "well that's great for those people, but would I see similar results?
Well, after another 3 weeks of properly setting up my Pinterest the answer is 100% yes! Here is a snapshot of my Pinterest growth below.
STEP 1: update pinterest profile
- Add your blog URL.
- Include keywords! Remember Pinterest is like a search engine, so SEO is important there too!
- I made sure to use the same profile photo that I use on my other social media platforms.
- I also signed up for rich pins which gives each pin a bolded titled and makes them appear higher in Pinterest searches. You will have to sign up for a Pinterest Business account to do this or you can switch your personal Pinterest to a business one like I did. It's pretty easy. From there, you'll want to copy/paste the code Pinterest provides on this page to validate your website and badda bing, badda boom - you've got rich pins!
STEP 2: CREAT PINS FOR EVERY POST
Believe it or not, I didn't have pins for any of my posts. *insert face palm emoji here*. But I wasn't in love with the first few pins I made and eventually redid them.
I also figured out that I would create consistent imagery. I love blush and clean white backgrounds. This is also super helpful because (hopefully) people will start recognizing the KimGaleta.com brand. Plus it's super efficient because I save time by having a basic template to work with each time - #winning!
There are so many options when it comes to finding beautiful images FOR FREE!!! These are my go-to:
- Kaboom Pics
STEP 3: BOARD CLEAN UP
- I made sure to delete (or hide) boards that just don't apply to my niche or what my target readers are looking for.
- I am also redoing my board covers to ensure a consistent style.
- I have also found that it's important to have more than just a handful of boards and so I've started to add a lot more to my feed. Again, I'm not doing this randomly. I'm doing this strategically.
- For each board, I added 20+ pins other bloggers' content.
STEP 4: FOLLOWing OTHER PINTEREST ACCOUNTS
Every morning when I woke up, I followed a few dozen accounts. I mostly followed people who were following the profiles of my favorite bloggers. This was a simple strategy which really paid off. I also loved that it didn't take a ton of time to do.
STEP 5: gROUP BOARD STRATEGY
Joining group boards is 100% essential if you want to increase your engagement level on Pinterest and ultimately grow your blog traffic. I waited about 10 days to get a few hundred followers before I tried joining any group boards.
- Start small. If you're brand new to Pinterest and blogging, you might want to start with smaller boards first while you build up your content and followers.
- Figure out the rules. Some boards want you to take certain actions such as repinning a certain number of pins or liking the organizer's Facebook page before you can join. Remember after being added as a collaborator, you'll want to follow the rules closely.
- Follow the group board organizer. Otherwise, he or she can't add you as a collaborator!
- Send a nice email to the group board organizer. Once you've found a few group boards, then it's time to do some outreach to get added as a collaborator.
Here's an example of how I'd sent my email requests:
I would love to be added to your group board "XYZ" I'm aware of the rules of the board. Very excited to contribute as well as share from the board.
Thank you so much for managing this board and taking the time to review my request. Here is my Pinterest URL: and my Pinterest email: email@example.com. Please let me know if you need any more information from my end."
*Note: I didn't realize I had a separate Pinterest email from the one I listed above. Be 100% that you provide the correct email in your request to be added. If you don't you might very well miss your shot at being a collaborator!
- You need a LOT of group boards! I'm a collaborator for about 30 so far including niche boards i.e. personal finance and general boards for all bloggers.
STEP 6: TAKING THINGS TO THE NEXT LEVEL WITH BOARDBOOSTER
By far, BoardBooster has been the best $5 I have ever spent as a blogger. Or probably ever! Although I started with the free trial I immediately realized I needed the paid version right away so that I could get more repins across group boards.
After 3 weeks, and joining a ton of group boards, I'll need to upgrade my subscription to the $10/month plan. But again, this is totally worth it because BoardBooster automates the process of ensuring my pins are going out to my group boards on a daily basis. There's very little to do once you set this up, apart from watching the repins grow!
I'm currently working on a BoardBooster tutorial and will link it here for you once it's ready. In the meantime, you can sign up for BoardBooster's free trial here.
STEP 7: PINNING OTHER PEOPLE'S CONTENT
It's super important to pin other people's content on Pinterest. You can either pin manually each day or use another Platform called Tailwind.
Things I don't like about Tailwind:
- The browser extension doesn't work on Safari for Macs and I'm not much of a Google Chrome user.
- You have to manually load pins into Tailwind each day. Kinda defeats the purpose of automation in my opinion.
Things I love about Tailwind:
- The analytics are pretty sweet.
- Just when I was considering canceling my Tailwind subscription, they hooked me with Tailwind Tribes. This is a way to share your pins and re-share other people's content super easily. I won't try to explain it further but instead will encourage you to try it for yourself. My friend Krista set up a tribe of her own that you can join by following this link! As of now, Tailwind Tribes is available for free even if you're not subscribed for Tailwind since they are still testing this platform out.
Tailwind also offers a free subscription if you'd like to try it out.
STEP 8: IMPROVING EXISTING BLOG CONTENT
Gurus like Natalie Bacon, who's one of my favorite bloggers note that having high quality content is everything. It's important to be a resource for readers.
One huge thing Natalie suggests is long form comment because 400-600 words just isn't going to cut it, especially if you're looking to rank highly in Google.
To be honest, I'd never written more than 1,000 words before (apart from research papers). But, like with any other skill, practice makes perfect. Every day, I've been working on this aspect. I've found that when you're speaking about something you're passionate about, it becomes that much easier to get the creative juices flowing. I'm still in the process of updating some of my first posts to ensure that they were both resourceful and actionable.
STEP 9: MAINTENANCE AND NEXT STEPS
As I mentioned above, once you have BoardBooster set up, you can then put your Pinterest on cruise control. I still double check things once a week to ensure everything's in order, though.
And, there are still some areas I need to work on:
- Redoing the rest of my old pins.
- Adding keyword rich descriptions for each pin.
- Creating punchier blog post titles. The same goes for my pins.
- Starting my own Pinterest group board. I'll link it here once it's ready. Guess what?! It's up and running, yay. Here is the link to my group board, "Lifestyle Bloggers Rule."
- Updating any older content to make sure all posts are resourceful and contain actionable tips.
As a new blogger, it is really overwhelming to try and do everything all at once. I would focus on mastering one thing at a time before moving on to the next thing. It is also important to note that it isn't just the number of followers that is important. When I first started out I kept focusing on boosting my numbers and found myself losing sight of my purpose. Sure, I do need readers in order to be successful as a blogger but I want engaged readers who trust my opinion. That's why I have really focused on providing high quality, actionable content. Beefing up my content combined with my Pinterest strategy helped me more than triple my blog traffic.
Now that I've got my Pinterest pretty much set up on autopilot, I'll be moving on to Facebook next because my page is completely empty, yikes!
I also recommend asking questions to those who are doing well with their Pinterest strategies. Most people are generally willing to help!
Are you using Pinterest to grow your blog? I would LOVE to hear from you! Please drop me a line in the comments below or send me a message through my contact form. I promise I'll reply within 24 hours.