When you think of social media marketing, Pinterest might not be the first platform that comes to mind. But, while Pinterest lags behind giants like Facebook, which made $84 billion in advertising last year alone, it is still a valuable social media channel for businesses looking to engage customers, build a brand community, and even drive purchases.
In this post, we’ll explore why Pinterest marketing can’t be overlooked and share 10 tips from the experts to make Pinterest marketing a win for your business.
Why is Pinterest marketing important?
Pinterest is a popular platform for consumers with a reported 450 million monthly active users as of Q2 2021. What’s more, those users are largely women, making it a valuable channel for businesses trying to reach female customers.
Pinterest is also known to drive a lot of traffic for businesses that use it to their full advantage. For example, Real Simple reports Pinterest drives more traffic to its site than Facebook, and Warby Parker has also seen increased traffic from Pinterest.
In addition to driving traffic (and oftentimes, purchases), Pinterest also gives you a peek into what’s trending and what customers are engaging with on the site, which can inform your overall marketing strategy and increase engagement on your other social media sites.
10 Pinterest marketing tips to try
When your business is ready to get started with Pinterest marketing, these 10 tips will help get your products in front of the right customers—and build lasting relationships.
1. Ace your images
Since Pinterest is a visual platform, it should come as no surprise image quality is an important early consideration.
You want to make sure your Pinterest images are good quality and stand out in the feed.
David Janssen, CEO of VPN comparison tool VPNoverview, said the basics include always cropping images vertically, using a 2:3 aspect ratio, and creating pins with a resolution of 600×900 pixels or 1000×1500 pixels.
“Pins will get cut off in the feed if the aspect exceeds the above so make sure you keep your images to these ratios,” added Marc Bromhall, founder of surfing website Beginner Surf Gear.
2. Incorporate keywords
Like other social channels and search engines, discoverability on Pinterest hinges in part on keywords.
In fact, Leah Marie Kenny, blogger at Pinterest marketing blog Leah Marie Marketing, said Pinterest optimization is one of the most overlooked parts of Pinterest marketing—but also one of the most important. There are three places to focus on when optimizing for Pinterest: board title, board description, and pins.
“Using optimal keywords in your title and description and pinning relevant pins are essential in helping Pinterest understand what your board and the pins on it are about,” she said. “The more that Pinterest understands, the more Pinterest will likely distribute your pins in the feed to be seen by others.”
3. Schedule your pins deliberately
When and how often you add new content matters for your Pinterest marketing, too.
Matt Weidle, business development manager at product comparison site Buyer’s Guide, pointed to data that shows the best times to upload new pins are Friday and Saturday evenings and weekday afternoons. Some experts also recommend pinning on weekday mornings to catch users’ attention before they start their days.
Eric Carrell, marketing advisor at SurfShark, noted consistency is also critical for optimum results.
“A pinboard that is continuously updated with new intriguing content attracts people more than anything else,” he said. “Invest the time to produce a variety of daily offerings [or] your fans will lose interest.”
Dror Zaifman, director of digital marketing at loan site iCash, agreed the more a brand pins new content, the more engagement it can get. He also recommended using a scheduling tool, which helps manage posts and provides additional insights.
Tailwind allows you to schedule pins on Pinterest.
The ideal number of pins per day, however, varies based in part on your target audience and can range from as few as three to as many as 30.
Another way to look at it is to create at least five pins for each product you are marketing.
“The Pinterest algorithm favors new pins with images that have not been used previously,” added Kathryn Schwab, founder of a web design and content creation firm Kathryn Schwab LLC. “So it’s important to use a different image on each pin if possible. Then schedule your pins so that one pin posts each day.”
In addition to those pins, Jason McMahon, strategist at digital agency Bambrick, recommends brands start out with at least eight boards so their homepages feature two full sections.
4. Inspire Pinterest users
Brands have a lot of leeway when it comes to what kind of content to post, but it’s a good rule of thumb to not only post images of products. No surprises here: That’s because inspiration matters on Pinterest—perhaps more than other social media platforms.
“Most people are on Pinterest to spruce up their lifestyles,” said Patrick Crane, CEO of sewing company Love Sew. “Your marketing efforts on the platform will be rewarded greatly if you can inspire people with a new lifestyle, gift, or hobby ideas using your product collection.”
Adam Wood, co-founder of e-commerce site RevenueGeeks, agreed pinning a variety of lifestyle inspiration, gift ideas, and projects is “a sure-fire Pinterest marketing strategy for attracting a large number of new customers.”
In a similar vein, Austin Dowse, CEO of medical e-commerce site Aimvein, said brands should shy away from overt promotion.
“In order to market your product on Pinterest, you need to think about your product as a new idea or inspiration and present it in an interesting way that gets people inspired,” he said.
5. Engage the community
User engagement is vital on Pinterest, but it’s a two-way street. That means your brand should take the time to interact with other users.
“Every social media network, including Pinterest, is a virtual brand community,” said Chris Taylor, marketing director at Amazon seller site ProfitGuru. “Participating in that community is critical for acquiring followers and increasing brand exposure.”
Tommy Gallagher, founder of digital banking site Top Mobile Banks, noted pin activity—which includes comments—is also a ranking factor, so it behooves brands to respond to users who have feedback.
“Spending time engaging with your community will help you expand your Pinterest brand by increasing your followers, brand loyalty, and other key performance indicators,” he said.
Ravi Davda, CEO of digital marketing agency Rockstar Marketing, agreed, noting engagement also includes liking other users’ pins.
“To get your pins seen, you need to be interacting with other accounts,” he said. “This helps you build personal relationships with your audience.”
6. Use a variety of pin types
In addition to standard pins, there are a few pin types that can help increase brand exposure:
According to Pinterest, rich pins automatically sync data from your website to your pins. There are three types: product, recipe, and article-rich pins. For product-rich pins, for example, details like pricing and availability update automatically.
Per Herbert Riggs, CEO of word finder site UnscrambleX, these updates make rich pins even more useful to Pinterest users, which helps drive traffic to your website.
“To convert users into buyers, use rich pins,” he added.
Shiv Gupta, marketing director of digital marketing agency Incrementors SEO Services, agreed this free Pinterest feature helps users pin much more than just photos.
“According to research, the re-pin to pin ratio of rich pins was nearly double that of normal pins, demonstrating this easy Pinterest marketing tactic is highly effective,” he added.
Similarly, product pins are useful to brands that sell directly to consumers because they include pricing and availability. They also signal to users the product in question is shoppable.
Per Alex Claro, VPN analyst at review and comparison site CreditDonkey, price tags help catch users’ eyes as they scroll through Pinterest.
“While a price tag may not provide all of the benefits of a full-fledged buyable pin, it does serve as a reminder to pinners that it is available for purchase and waiting for them,” he added. “You may add text to the description of a normal pin without using buyable pins. You may also utilize rich pins as an alternative.”
Digital marketer Elna Cain noted beauty retailer Sephora has used product pins to improve its shopping experience.
Idea pins, which started out in September 2020 as story pins, on the other hand, are a more recent option and include videos, voiceovers, and image and text overlay.
Brands can publish them directly to Pinterest, where they are discoverable by users with similar interests. Steve Scott, CTO of Excel tip site Spreadsheet Planet, likes story pins because they stand out and give “a fresh way to communicate with your fans and foster loyalty.”
In May 2021, Pinterest expanded idea pins to the U.S., U.K., Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Austria, and Switzerland after adding new publishing tools. In the prior month, Pinterest said the average comment rate on idea pins was 9x greater than standard pins.
In fact, Arun Grewal, editor-in-chief of coffee site CoffeeBrewingPro.com, said idea pins are his “number one Pinterest marketing tip” because in part Pinterest is really pushing the feature and a shortage of content from other brands can help you see “massive reach.”
Cain even said the Pinterest algorithm is pushing idea pins—at least for now.
“Idea pins are structured very much like Reels in Instagram,” she said. “You can create a video idea pin or a visual idea pin as a way to show off your latest collection.”
7. Invest in Pinterest ads
And, of course, a little paid promotion never hurts to give your Pinterest marketing a boost.
That’s according to Chris Nddie, marketing director at discount site ClothingRIC, who said, “It’s well worth running promoted content to magnify your Pinterest marketing initiatives, especially with the data provided on your company account.”
Pinterest offers multiple ad formats—including standard pins, rich pins, and carousels—so it’s wise for advertisers to experiment to see “what works best for your brand and what your target audience enjoys,” he added.
Laura Brennan of digital agency Flycast Media even said a promoted pin “stays on the platform forever, providing potentially indefinite promotion.”
In addition, she noted promoted pins can be saved by users, which further increases the potential for brand awareness, engagement, and conversions.
What’s more, Matt Lally, founder of gift site TheGiftYak, said Pinterest “isn’t the first platform most marketers go to advertise on,” which “creates a great opportunity for brands in wellness, CPG, mommy and baby, and similar niches to connect with their audience for cheap.”
8. Review Pinterest analytics
Per Taylor, this yields “critical tracking data” to help “determine which techniques and content are effective, allowing you to continuously enhance your marketing.”
In fact, Brice Gump, digital marketing expert at agency and consultancy Major Impact Media, said any marketing activity is rendered useless without tracking and analyzing the right metrics, like impressions, total audience, saves, and engagements.
“Analyzing these metrics will help you understand which content works best for your business and in which areas you need to improve,” he said. “At the end of the day, if you use these data-driven insights to your advantage, you can grow your customer base by leaps and bounds.”
“You may examine the distribution of pins or media types, determine the average price of your products, measure follower growth, and more,” he added.
9. Keep up on Pinterest trends
Another feature, Pinterest Trends, shows the top search terms in the U.S., Canada, and the U.K. from the last year.
“Effective planning for timing a rising tide in searches on a trending topic in Pinterest and pairing it with strategic content can significantly enable traffic to websites and stores,” she added. “When implemented successfully, you can see a noticeable uptick in traffic trends with the growth of that topic both in Pinterest Analytics and Google Analytics.”
10. Add Pinterest widgets
Finally, adding Pinterest-specific widgets to your website gives shoppers another way to interact with your Pinterest account. Options include a follow button and a button to save content.
“This not only encourages visitors to interact with your brand’s content but also makes following you and storing material from your website easier,” said Bram Jansen, chief editor of VPN review site vpnAlert. “On the Urban Outfitters website, for example, you may quickly save a product image by hovering over it and selecting the Pinterest to save option. A popup from Pinterest will then allow you to pick which board you want to add it to. People may now locate your stuff more easily than ever before.”
Create a winning Pinterest marketing strategy
Using these Pinterest marketing tips, your business can take advantage of all Pinterest has to offer—from promoting your products and services to building a vibrant brand community. Try these Pinterest marketing tips to see which strategies work best for your business:
- Ace your images
- Incorporate keywords
- Schedule deliberately
- Inspire users
- Engage the community
- Use a variety of pin types
- Invest in ads
- Review Pinterest analytics
- Keep up on Pinterest trends
- Add Pinterest widgets
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