When I first started getting serious about Pinterest I had to do a major assessment of my Pinterest profile. When I examined my profile, you know what I found? Most of the clicks I was driving on Pinterest went to other people’s content, not my own. That was kind of devastating to me. I had so much Pinterest influence with my 1,000+ followers, but at the end of the day, I was just sending people away from my site. Don’t get me wrong, I love sharing the love, but at the end of the day you should be getting Pinterest clicks to your own site as well.
Pinterest can be SUCH a great traffic booster, but only if you are using it strategically. So many bloggers make the mistake of using the default Pinterest boards and using Pinterest like a pinner and NOT a blog or business owner. When you want to use Pinterest as a lead and traffic generator, you have to start thinking of Pinterest more strategically. This means cleaning up some of your boards.
You want to know the one hack that I used on Pinterest to get more Pinterest clicks?
In order to get more Pinterest clicks I pinned more of my own content.
Okay, duh, but stick with me.
I started Pinterest as a casual pinner. I just wanted to pin things that inspired me. I had SO MANY OFF-BRAND BOARDS.
I had all the usual boards:
- Recipe boards
- Dream Wedding boards
- Fashion Boards
- Activities I wanted to do with my future kids
- Places I wanted to visit
And so much more. When you first make a Pinterest account they even suggest these kinds of boards. I was so enthralled with keeping these boards and it was really hindering me from reaching my full Pinterest potential.
Your goal should be to have boards that you can actually pin your own content onto.
It’s okay to have a couple of boards you can’t pin your personal content to, but it’s really important that you can pin your content to at least 80% of your boards. Dream weddings are fun to browse and look at, but at the end of the day, I don’t have any wedding content on my blog at all. Any time I spend pinning to a dream wedding board is just me constantly promoting for other people.
Now, I am not saying that you shouldn’t pin other people’s content. Most of my boards are FILLED with other people’s content. But I also have to shrink the possibility that I am promoting a million people with no chance of actually making relationships that matter to me.
So, how do you walk this fine line of sharing content and pinning your own content?
1. Evaluate Your Current Boards
I am sharing my Pinterest Board Organizer with you. This will help you evaluate all the boards you currently have on your account and help you pick the best boards to pin to when you are promoting on Pinterest. This is a completely free tool for you to download today. This is a Google Drive spreadsheet so you need to make a copy by going to:
FILE----> MAKE A COPY
This will allow you to get this content on your own Google Drive. Fill in information about your current boards, group boards, and boards you would potentially like to make. I hope you find this freebie helpful as you evaluate where you see your boards going in the future.
2. Narrow Down Your Boards
Next, you need to narrow down your boards. Is there a board you love, but can’t pin you own content to, you may have to get rid of it for the time being. All of the pins you are making that aren’t relevant to your actual content waters down the effect of your pins. It is also watering down the effect of your Pinterest followers. Many of your followers may only be following that one Pinterest board about dream weddings (or some other concept that doesn’t apply to you.) So by having this Pinterest board you are inflating the worth of your Pinterest account. Getting rid of those irrelevant boards will help you realize the worth of your boards and help you focus on what matters.
Not to alarm you, but you will without a doubt see a dip in your followers, and it will probably suck at first. When I first started using this strategy I lost a lot of followers, and I have had huge dips even in the last few months. My most recent dip was in November. I re-arranged some boards and went from 3,541 to 3,294 followers. It took about a month but I finally went back over the 3,541 mark and now I have over 4,100 followers on Pinterest in January. So, yes, those dips happen, but if you can get closer to your ideal audience there are some things you have to accept.
3. Evaluate What Boards You Need To Add That Fit With Your Content
Chances are that once you delete or make private some of your boards like your Dream Wedding board you will probably have a lot of empty content to fill. It’s time to start from scratch and see what boards you have covered, and what boards you can potentially add to make your account more valuable to your ideal reader. These boards don’t necessarily have to be boards you can pin your own content to, but they need to be relevant. What other boards would your ideal reader be searching for?
4. Pin your own content more.
If you want to see more clicks, you have to be a better pinner. So many people forget the long scheme of things when it comes to Pinterest. They may pin a pin once or twice, but they don’t think of how they can continually put their content in front of their followers (and people who don’t even follow them.
- Pin your content onto every single relevant board.
- Join group boards and pin to those too (contact me about my blogging and college group boards at firstname.lastname@example.org!)
- Get BoardBooster so you can schedule your pins, loop them, and get them seen by more pinners every time you post them.
5. Pin content that your ideal reader would find helpful and share the love.
Notice I said your ideal reader, not you or your bestie. If you have trouble identifying your ideal reader, be sure to check out my post all about this topic. You are trying to reach out to them by offering them lots of pins to look through. While they may click on other people’s stuff, they may also follow you, and that gives you more followers to share your own content with overtime.
You want to be helpful to your ideal reader, and sometimes that means helping them out with something they are looking for, even if it’s not something you offer on your own personal website. Be a helpful person, but don’t forget to share your pins as well, because that can be extremely beneficial information for your readers.
6. Continue Tweaking Things Here and There
The thing about Pinterest is, it takes a little while to see great results. Once you start gaining results, though, you will see that the growth keeps going. You need to take your time, make your initial changes, and then keep pinning great content to all of your new and relevant boards.
If you are still not seeing great results, go back to step one to see how your boards are performing since you have implemented your new boards. Update the number of followers you have on your boards to current numbers and re-evaluate how relevant the boards on your list are. Often, it takes a whole lot of courage to really get to the place where we are getting rid of boards that don’t do us any favors.
A lot of us have had Pinterest for a very long time. We get emotionally attached to our Pinterest the way it is right now, warts and all. As lovely as your Pinterest may be, pinning as a blog/business is a lot different from pinning as a person (as stated earlier.) Strategy is important, and sometimes that includes getting rid of the funny jokes board (I miss my funny jokes board!)
Pinterest is one of my favorite platforms. In 2016, Pinterest drove 19,906 of my 37,264 sessions (which means it drove a little over 50% of the sessions on my site in 2016.) So far in 2017 it has driven about 42% of the traffic to my site, which is still a significant number. It is time that you start using Pinterest strategically so that you can find your ideal audience and hone in on who they are.