After only 24 short months, “Pinterest” has become the 3rd most popular social network under Facebook and Twitter. Not even Oprah or Tom Cruise can compete with those statistics! Pinterest is dominating the social sphere and webmasters are taking advantage of the profit-busting potential it provides.
Are you a passionate, pinning, Pinterest patron? (Say that three times fast!) If you haven’t “pinned” your way to the top just yet, you may not be aware of all the juicy secrets Pinterest offers. Let us help you dominate the Pinterest world and squeeze out every bit of possibility it offers.
For those who have never heard of Pinterest (where have you been?), read this article first on how to use Pinterest to direct more traffic to your website.
If you want to be successful on Pinterest, you must understand the premise of the platform. Pinterest is like “eye candy” for users.
Pinterest is all about LIFESTYLE. If you can discover how your products and services can enhance users’ lifestyles you will be a Pinterest success story!
1. Pinterest Web Pages
Get creative! Find ways to promote your brand without shoving it in people’s faces. As a web designer, create a site or a page on your own website specifically for Pinterest images and design some creative graphics.
Zulily created an entire page of “Pinables” and encouraged people to pin them as an incentive to receive credits:
WARNING: Do not pin images from only your main website. Vary your images to include those your audience would love. Build a community, not a self-absorbed profile.
For example, a restaurant may pin images of the tasty food from its kitchen, but it should not stop there. To add more intrigue it could “pin” breathtaking images of the places from which the food originated such as Italy or France. By displaying related, interesting images, you will gain more followers because when it is time to “pin” your own content, you will have more eyeballs looking at it.
Excessive advertising on Facebook and Twitter will turn away your target audience and cause you to lose fans/followers. The same rules apply to Pinterest.
Useful infographics spread virally on Pinterest. Create an infographic with tips that will help your target audience and pin it for all to see. As of two weeks ago, this infographic published by Angie’s List was “re-pinned” more than 14,000 times:
Note: This wasn’t just another infographic. It provided instruction that was useful to viewers. The more you can solve a problem with your images, the greater the chance it will land on the “Popular” board.
3. The “Popular” Board
Pinterest has a “Popular” board where all the most popular pins reside. When your pin has reached this board, it most likely has gone viral.
The easiest way to reach the Popular page is to get featured on the individual category pages. Every time you “pin” an image, it has the potential to reach the top of a category page. Each of your boards is assigned a category. Change a category by editing the board and choosing the correct one from the dropdown menu.
Originally, Pinterest allowed users to publish one pin, per hour, per account to reach the coveted category pages. But since people have been abusing the system and spamming, this rule has changed to one pin allowed every 24 hours. And I don’t expect this to remain since Pinterest is constantly changing its terms to ward off spamming activity. Some pins never even reach the category pages and the experts are still trying to figure out the Pinterest algorithm.
To enhance your chance of going viral…
- Submit content at the times most people are using Pinterest. Experts suggest posting between 5-7 a.m. EST or 5-7 p.m. EST, when people are waking and starting their day or done with work.
- Comment on related pins on the “Popular” page to gain some additional visibility. Just be careful not to spam!
- Pay close attention to the type of content Pinterest features on its “Popular” page. Pin similar content and relate it back to your brand in a creative way.
Add a “Pin It” button to your website or blog so users can pin your images to their pinboards.
Did you know that you can find out everyone who is pinning content from your website? Use this information to connect with the Pinterest users who are “pinning” your images.
Use this url but replace 1stwebdesigner.com with your site’s url.
5. The Potential
If you are a web designer, not only is there potential to spread the word about your own services, but there is also great opportunity for more client work. By creating infographics that instruct, and building your Pinterest board, you are showing potential clients how important graphics and images are for the web. Stress to your clients the importance of “image branding” and you could extend the breadth of your services.
Remember that Pinterest is not just another avenue to promote your products and services. It’s a site that caters to the brands that can creatively display via images and videos how to fit their products and services within users’ ideal lifestyles.
Pinterest is still on an “invite only” basis. If you would like an invite, please let us know in the comments below!