If you’re a new blogger, or if you just haven’t gotten around to starting your Pinterest account yet, now is the time. Pinterest can be a huge traffic driver for your blog, but you’ve got to use it the right way. So let’s talk about how to start a Pinterest account for your blog.
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Start a business account
First things first, you should start a business account, not a personal account. Having a business account gives you access to analytics, promoted pins, rich pins (which we’ll talk about later), and places a website link on your profile page. It’s free and easy to do, so there’s no reason not to have a business account.
If you already have a personal Pinterest account, you can easily switch it over to a business account. Just go to your settings and you’ll see an option.
Verify your website
The next thing you’ll want to do is verify your website. This will boost your pins since Pinterest knows that your website is legit, and you’ll be able to get analytics. Go into your Settings menu, and you’ll see an option to verify your site.
To verify your site, you’ll need to enter a piece of code that Pinterest provides into the header of your site. If you’re on WordPress, you can use the Yoast SEO plugin to do this. If you’re on Squarespace, connecting your site to Pinterest should verify it automatically.
If you enter the code and Pinterest still says it’s not verified, just contact Pinterest Support. They’ll often go in and manually verify it for you.
Once it’s verified, it should look like this:
Sign up for rich pins
Next up, you’ll want to enable rich pins. Rich pins add extra data to your pins, like your site name and the headline for the pin. It gives your pin a better chance to be clicked or repinned.
As Pinterest says:
“Rich Pins show metadata right on the Pin itself, giving Pinners a richer experience and increasing engagement. Information in a Rich Pin is independent of the Pin description, ensuring that important information is always tied to the Pin.”
To enable rich pins you’ll need to add some meta data to your site and then apply for rich pins. Pinterest explains how to enable rich pins in this article.
Craft your profile
Now that you’ve got the technical stuff set up on the backend, it’s time to craft your profile.
You’ll want to add a profile picture that reflects your business. If your business is a big corporation, the logo might be appropriate, but if it’s a smaller blog, a nice headshot of you is probably better.
You also get a profile description. You don’t have a lot of space, so use it well. Tell the viewer what you do and how you can help them. You can also include a link to an opt-in, if you want.
For example, my profile description reads: “I help beginners become bloggers. Blog tips and social media strategy. Free Instagram hashtag guide: blogandbiz.com/hashtag-guide.”
Build your boards
The next thing you should do is start building up some boards. There’s no magic number, but 15-20 boards is a good starting point.
All of your boards should relate to what you blog about. For instance, I blog about blogging and social media, so I have boards like: “Blog Tips,” “Pinterest Tips,” “Instagram Tips,” etc.
It’s important to stay on topic so that you are attracting the right people to your profile. If I started pinning about recipes or travel, I might gain some followers, but they’re not people that are going to have any interest in what I blog about.
Pro tip: If you still want to pin about other topics, just make those boards “secret” (there’s a setting when you edit the board that allows you to do this). That way you can pin whatever you want, but only the on-brand stuff will show up on your profile.
Once you’ve got your boards set up, start pinning. Put at least 25 pins on each board to start, and then just go from there.
One final note--you should also create a “blog board” where you pin all of your own blog posts, and nothing else. Make this board the first one on your profile so that people have an easy way to find your content.
One of the most important things you can do on Pinterest (or maybe THE most important) is to focus on Pinterest SEO, or, keywords.
Using keywords tells Pinterest what your pins and your boards are about so that Pinterest can put them in someone’s Smart Feed or search results.
You should be using keywords in:
Your profile description
Your board titles
Your board descriptions
Your pin descriptions
Finding keywords on Pinterest is easy. Just go to the search bar at the top of the screen and type in a topic. Pinterest will then automatically suggest a bunch of words right underneath. These are words that people are searching for when they’re searching for your topic, so they make great keywords.
You should utilize these keywords pretty much everywhere you can.
For example, the description for my blog board says:
“If you want the best blog tips and social media tips from my website blogandbiz.com, this board is for you. It has all of my most popular blog posts and articles that are perfect for beginner bloggers or more advanced bloggers. In this board, you'll find ideas about blog tips, social media tips, Pinterest tips, Instagram tips, business tips, email marketing tips, online course tips, and more!”
I still use full sentences (not just keyword stuffing), but I’ve got a bunch of keywords in there. Ideally, if someone is searching for those topics, Pinterest will bring up my board and my pins.
Think about keywords whenever you’re making a new board or a new pin. They’re always important.
Make your own pins
Every one of your blog posts should have its own dedicated Pinterest image. That means a vertical image with a 2:3 ratio (horizontal images are not recommended for Pinterest). Generally, it also means that you overlay text describing the pin, although some niches, like food bloggers, may wish to only show a photo of the food.
There’s no one magical right pin. There are tons of different designs out there and people have success with all different kinds of pins.
If you’re stumped for how to create pins, I recommend Canva. It’s a free graphic design program that’s VERY easy to use. I use it for all my pins.
You may even want to try making a few different images for each blog post (they don’t all need to be in the actual post) and seeing which ones do best. I frequently do this when I’m experimenting with a new design.
You should insert one of your pinable images right into your blog post so that people will be reminded to pin it. When you insert the description (if you’re using WordPress), make sure to fill in the “alt text” field. This is the field that Pinterest will take the pin description from when someone pins your pin. So whatever you want your pin description to say, put it here.
Adding a social sharing plugin is another important step. You want people to be able to share your content easily, so having social sharing buttons on your blog posts makes this easy and possible. I highly recommend Social Warfare, but there are other plugins that work too.
Once everything is set up, you’ll want to start pinning. People disagree about what the right number of pins per day is, but I try for 30-50. This may seem like a lot, but when we talk about schedulers (below), you’ll see how easy it can be.
You want to be pinning a mix of your own content and other people’s content. You can find new content to pin in the Smart Feed on the homepage, or by searching for topics in the search bar.
But the easiest way to do this, is through Tailwind, which is our next topic.
Set up Tailwind
Tailwind is a Pinterest scheduler (it also does Instagram, but that’s a topic for another day). It allows you to schedule posts out ahead of time, so that you’re actively pinning all day long, when in reality you may not have touched Pinterest in a week. I highly recommend it.
Tailwind has a few main features. I wrote about how to use Tailwind right here.
First is the smart schedule. Tailwind will analyze your data and come up with a recommended schedule for you. This will ensure that your pins are going out on a consistent basis.
You can get pins onto your Tailwind schedule in a few different ways.
If you install the Google Chrome extension, you can pin to Tailwind right from Pinterest. Just hover over the pin you want and look for the blue Tailwind logo. Click it, and you’ll be directed to a screen where you can schedule it to Tailwind.
You can also click the Tailwind logo on your navigation bar while you’re on Pinterest and have the option of pinning multiple pins at once.
But my favorite way to find new content is through Tailwind “Tribes.” Tribes are groups of pinners that get together to pin content about a certain subject. People add their pins to the tribe, the pins show up in the tribe’s feed, and then you can add them to your Tailwind schedule right from there.
Tribes are a great way to both get good content and share your content so more people see it.
Finally, Tailwind also has a feature called Smart Loop. Smart Loop allows you to recycle old content and repin it over and over so that it gets seen again and again. I wrote about how to use Smart Loop right here.