*The original version of this article was published on KristaAoki.com.
Pinterest is a powerful, visual search engine bloggers use to expand their audience. In fact, many bloggers attribute their higher traffic numbers due to successful Pinterest strategies. The big question many ask is “how the heck do I boost traffic with Pinterest?!?!?!”
And what would you say if I told you Pinterest is the one network where your follower numbers totally don’t matter?
So, you don’t need a huge following to boost traffic with Pinterest.You don't need tons of Pinterest followers to drive traffic to your blog. Click To Tweet
Yes, Pinterest is a platform where small bloggers can compete with larger bloggers. Your content can and will be seen by others, even if you have a small following.
But that doesn’t happen without effort.
So, what Pinterest strategies should you start implementing in order to have your content seen on Pinterest?
Get the Basics Down First
A successful Pinterest strategy requires a solid foundation, and this guide is written with the understanding you have the Pinterest basics down. Ask yourself the following questions:
- Is your account a business account with rich pins enabled?
- Do you pin vertical images that stand out in the crowd?
- Is your entire Pinterest account (name, boards, pin descriptions) search friendly?
- Do you have a board that only features your own blog posts?
- Do you make use of the Showcase feature?
If you answered “no” to any of the above questions, click here to read our Pinterest tips for beginners and start building a solid Pinterest foundation that will help your Pinterest grow. If you’re like, uhhh yeah girl, I’ve got the basics down – then keep reading.
Related Reading: Pinterest Tips for Beginners
1. Join Pinterest Group Boards
Many bloggers attribute the success of their Pinterest strategies to group boards.
Group boards are just like regular Pinterest boards, except group leaders (the person who started the board) can add other collaborators who pin to the board.
And anyone on Pinterest can create a group board.
As a collaborator, you follow the group board’s rules and have access to pin to the board. The board’s followers includes anyone following the group’s leader, as well as anyone else who chooses to follow along to that board’s content.
Group boards give you access to someone’s Pinterest following and can expand your audience, no followers necessary. Having access to someone’s followers via group boards gives newer bloggers a chance of really multiplying their audience via Pinterest.
You can normally find instructions on how to join a group board in the board’s description. And the group board owner is the first icon in the string of icons beside the description. Take my group board, The Lady Blog Project, as an example:
To find group boards you can join, basically stalk your favorite bloggers in your niche and see where they’re contributing.
If that sounds like too much work, no worries – we’ve got you covered. Leave your details below to access our Pinterest groups cheat sheet.
Pinterest makes it possible for newer bloggers to get more traffic.
Maximize your exposure on Pinterest by joining group boards related to your niche.
Get free access to this list of over 150 Pinterest group boards and start getting your blog exposed to the right people.
2. Participate in Tailwind Tribes
Tailwind Tribes will seriously change your Pinterest game. And you can use them for free.
Yep, Tailwind Tribes are totally free to use! Now that I’ve got your attention, what are Tailwind Tribes?
Tailwind Tribes are groups where you post your content for others to pin while also finding content by others to repin.
For every pin you add to a Tribe, you share 1-2 other pins (depending on the group). This practically ensures your content will be repinned. Of course, for them to work, everyone has to participate.
It’s a win-win because you can find great content to repin, and your pins will receive shares.
Tailwind Tribes can literally multiply your exposure on Pinterest.
So, how do you get started?
- First, click here to join Tailwind for free.
- Join our Tailwind Tribe for ALL pins (share 2 pins for every 1 pin you post).
- If you blog about blogging, click here to join our free BLOGGING & BUSINESS Tailwind Tribe (2:1 sharing).
In the past, we’ve removed people who can’t keep up with sharing 2 pins for every 1 pin they post. If this has happened to you, please feel free to join again – just kindly follow our rules.
*Important: If you choose to use the free version to manually pin others’ pins, send the group leader a private message letting them know! Otherwise, they won’t see you contributing to the growth of the Tribe and will probably remove you.
3. Pin Frequently
Whether you manually pin or you use a scheduler to pin, you need to pin frequently (as in, aim to pin 15-30 times per day).
But, where can you pin and what should you pin?
- Pin your own content to group boards. Unless the group rules say otherwise, it’s normal and expected to pin your pins to group boards more than once.
- Pin a combination of others’ content (and your own) to your boards. You can fill your own (niche-related) group boards with others’ pins, as well as your own relevant pins.
Okay, and when should you pin?
Like all day. That’s why we use Tailwind’s annual plan to schedule our pins. When you pre-pay for one year up front, you can pin an unlimited amount of times. So Tailwind will pin for you when you’re at work, while you sleep, etc.
4. Create your own Pinterest group board.
Another strategy to grow your following is to create your own Pinterest group board.
- The more followers your group board has, the better. It’s not really useful to most people if you have less than 1,000 followers, but at the same time… I’ve grown group boards from less than 100 followers on Pinterest.
- Targeted, niche-related group boards perform better than general “pin-all” group boards. If you create a group board based on your expertise, then the contributors and followers you attract will be naturally interested in your content.
- Establish rules you want from the start. If you really want your group board (and thus following) to grow, you should ask your contributors to keep the board healthy. Ask for 1 repin for every 1-2 pins they share, but establish those rules from the start.
Ultimately, the way you want to run your board is YOUR decision! Don’t hesitate to start a group board just because you have 100 followers. And, if you want a “general, pin all” kind of board – that’s okay, too.
Decide what you want from your board, and take it from there.
- What are your group board requirements? Do you want contributors to follow you to be added?
- What topics will you accept for your board?
- How many times per day can contributors pin?
- Should they repin when they do pin to the board? How often?
- Do you allow affiliate/product links on your group board?
Protip: Make the rules clear from the start, and outline the directions to join the board in the group description.
5. Strategically Repin
Lastly: strategically repin. Seems like a duh statement, right?
- Repin from your group board. To increase the virality score of your group board (and to support your group contributors), repin from your own group board!
- Choose to repin content your followers would enjoy. So this means you’re pinning more than your own content. If you give your followers others’ content (that they’ll enjoy), they are more likely to repin it which will help your boards’ virality score.
- Repinning from your “On the Blog” board increases the virality score of that board. Instead of repinning from your blog, repin from the board you designate to showcase all your blog posts.
Seriously – just observe the difference in the virality scores comparing my “On the Blog” board to the other boards where I pin.
With healthy virality scores, your boards and your profile are more likely to be found – which will lead to growth!
Another way you can increase your virality score is by participating in repin threads in Facebook groups. Then, when you link to a pin for others to repin, link to a pin from a board you want to increase the virality score. This increases the health of your boards and helps your profile to be seen more on Pinterest.
Don’t know where to start?
- Reroute Lifestyle Community hosts a weekly “repin all” thread on Wednesdays.
- Bloggers Unite on Pinterest hosts daily “repin 10” threads.
Keep Watching Your Growth
After you start implementing these Pinterest strategies, keep tracking your growth. Tailwind has a suite of detailed analytics you can access using a free account.
A huge telltale sign is if you’re not getting repins in Pinterest Tribes, yet you still see others getting repinned in the Tribe.
- How is the headline on your image?
- Does the text on your image stand out beside all the others?
- Are you writing detailed pin descriptions?
If you’re not seeing results after a few weeks, you might need to change something. Test different Pinterest images (for the same post) to see what performs better, and why.
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Most importantly, remember that as a small blogger, you can still totally get traffic from Pinterest. But if you’re not seeing results, there’s something wrong with your strategy. If you need a second eye, get in touch with us for a blog audit and we can specifically tailor your audit to address your Pinterest strategy.
Our fave part of the discussion seriously happens in the comments. What strategies have you been trying on Pinterest? Or, what have you been trying on Pinterest – but haven’t seen any results?