All About Pinterest: How to Use Pinterest for Your Business

how to gain followers with pinterest

One of the most under-utilized tools when it comes to growing your business or social media account is Pinterest. Think about it. Where do you go when you’re looking for design inspo? Pinterest. What about a healthy recipe for dinner? Chef Pinterest. Need ideas for your upcoming kitchen renovation? You guessed it, Joanna Gaines. No wait, I meant PINTEREST!

In this post I’ll be sharing the tips and tricks that have worked for me to gain over 1 MILLION monthly viewers on my Pinterest account!

Need help with Instagram, too? You can read my post about growth strategies HERE.

Setting It Up

Chances are, you already have a personal Pinterest account that you’ve used for years. It’s got fashion trends from 2010, a hundred recipes you may or may not have cooked, and enough inspirational quotes to last a lifetime. Here’s my advice– convert your personal account to your brand’s account, and leave some of the old pins.

Here’s why. If you’re a home decor blogger like me, it would be useful to you to keep “for the home” boards. Users can still find you based on those pins, and unlike Instagram, content doesn’t need to be constantly re-evaluated for relevancy. Not only that, but your viewers aren’t interested in JUST home decor. They probably like recipes, too! Most people are more likely to follow an account with 5+ boards, as opposed to starting from scratch.

The next thing you’ll want to do in order to be able to see your analytics, or how your pin performs, is go to your settings and change to a business account. You’ll know which pins are most popular this way, and people will recognize you as a brand, and not just another Pinterest user.

You’ll also want to include your niche in your name. For example, instead of my Pinterest name being “Olive Branch Cottage,” I decided to call it “Olive Branch Cottage: A Home Decor Blog.” That way, you know right from the start what it is “I do.”

Creating a Pin

Great, you’re all set up and it’s time to make a pin!

Whenever I post on Instagram, I head immediately over to Pinterest and make the same photo into a pin. Hit the + sign at the bottom of the home page that says “create” and then “pin.”

Select your photo, and you’ll see a screen that looks like this:

how to gain followers with Pinterest

The first thing I fill out is “destination website.” If your goal is to drive traffic to your Instagram, you’ll want to type in this blank instagram.com/yourusername. That way, whenever people see your image and want the details, they’ll be able to click on the picture and be redirected to your page. Once you add the link, the title of your pin will auto-populate as the name of your Instagram.

You can make the “destination website” anything you want– your various social media accounts, blog, etsy shop– whatever!

The Description

This section of my blog post gets its own separate heading, because it’s just that important. The description is how people are going to find you!

Here’s what I do: make this blank a literal description, not a caption like you would on Instagram. Let’s take this photo for example:

farmhouse kitchen

Instead of writing “I had such a fun time baking cookies with my husband,” I would make the description of this photo

couple baking in kitchen, kitchen photo shoot, farmhouse kitchen, subway tile, custom pantry door, white kitchen cabinets, wood floors, kitchen island, kitchen decor ideas

The reason this works is because Pinterest is strictly image-based. People don’t scroll through Pinterest to read captions and get to know a person– they’re browsing for useful ideas. A good, thorough, relevant description is the way they’ll find YOUR ideas.

Repinning

Yay! You just got a notification that Suzy repinned your photo to her board.

Okay, so?

Here’s what you should do: repin the image to your own board. Wait…. what? Repin my OWN image?

Yes!

Here’s the thing about Pinterest– it doesn’t matter how many followers you have, because your pins aren’t ONLY shown to your followers. Ever notice how one day you search for “chocolate cake recipes,” and then the next day when you log in, the first thing on your home page is another chocolate cake recipe? Pinterest shows you what it thinks you want to see.

So, by repinning your own images, you’re making your pin “relevant” at different times throughout the day, meaning you could reach a whole new audience that didn’t see it before, but is searching for it right now.

Other Pinterest Tidbits

  • You’ll want to create a board that is strictly for your own images. Mine is titled “Olive Branch Cottage,” and that’s where I pin all the photos that I personally have taken. This is my “featured board,” meaning it’s at the top of my profile when someone visits my page.

  • With that being said, you can still use Pinterest “the way you used to.” I still use mine to find ideas and inspiration! But the pins I find that other people created, I pin to different boards. I have a “cottage style” board, as well as one titled “kitchens I love.” In short, keep your pins and other peoples’ pins separate!

  • Pinning images at different times throughout the day is a good idea (to reach a wide variety of people). But this isn’t always realistic. You can’t be on your phone 24/7. The solution to this is scheduling your pins! Get on in the morning, create a pin like usual, but instead of posting immediately, schedule it for 11am. Then, create another pin, but schedule it to post at 4pm. Maybe another one for 9pm, when people are surfing Pinterest before bed. Here is where you can set the time your pin will be posted:

scheduling pins on Pinterest

  • Next, when it comes to the pins themselves, you’ll want to use portrait mode shots. Because the majority of Pinterest users are browsing on their phones, tall shots tend to perform better.

  • Lastly, analytics. My analytics are typically availabe 24 hours after I publish my pin. You’ll be able to see your own stats by clicking on your pin, and they’ll appear at the top like this:

how to see your pinterest analytics
I had 2,000 people in ONE WEEK click on this pin and be redirected to my Instagram!

I hope this helps you as you’re getting started! Pinterest is an amazing tool to drive traffic to your website once you get the hang of it. Let me know your thoughts in the comments below, or come chat with me on Instagram! And while you’re at it, let’s hang on my Pinterest 😉 Happy pinning! -M

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