Since its launch, Pinterest has grown into a worldwide social media phenomenon. Each day, millions of users turn to Pinterest for ideas and inspiration, and the platform is continually growing.
You might use Pinterest to find craft ideas or unique recipes, but do you know how much it can help your eCommerce business? Pinterest is an excellent platform for marketing your brand and reaching new audiences.
Facebook and Twitter are currently the two largest social media platforms. They attract more users and brands than any other site. You probably already use them for marketing. But Pinterest has much to offer (if not more) than these two behemoth social sharing sites.
But because Pinterest is considered Facebook and Twitter's little brother, it can be confusing to market with the platform. How do you get Pinterest engagement? How can you maximize Pinterest engagement?
Depending on your niche, your brand might not be on Pinterest yet. About 80% of Pinterest users are female, so until recently the platform was best for brands targeting women and girls. Makeup and fashion products used to dominate Pinterest, but with a rise in male users, the platform can bring high engagement rates to brands in almost any niche. In fact, the number of male users on Pinterest doubled throughout the past year, making them the fastest-growing demographic on the platform. You no longer have to sell products targeted at women to earn engagement on Pinterest.
Sharing and promoting on Pinterest is different than on Facebook or Twitter, but many of the same concepts are the same. We're going to look at ways you can reach new audiences by achieving more engagement on Pinterest, in order to improve your social marketing efforts and improve your bottom line.
How to Get More Engagement On Pinterest
You might be surprised at how much engagement on Pinterest can mean for your brand. Even a few shares can introduce your store to large new audiences. Let's take a look at the best tactics you can use to increase your brand's engagement on Pinterest.
#1: Use Long Images to Get Attention in Searches and On Boards
Pinterest images are far different than those on other social media platforms. Instead of organizing pictures horizontally, Pinterest does so vertically. Think about infographics, and how they're usually much longer than typical images – this type of lengthy image is exactly what you want to share on Pinterest.
You can post smaller photos, but they won't stand out well. Engagement on Pinterest is largely dependent on the visual appeal of a post. To achieve the most likes, link follows, and pins, your posts need to stand out from the rest.
According to a recent study, tall images on Pinterest stand out better than wide images. Pinterest boards scroll vertically, which makes it easier to read tall images.
You can make your images very tall (or long). The taller your image, the more content and information you can offer. When you offer more content, your posts will generally get more re-pins than those with less. According to Design School:
- Images with more than one dominant color get re-pinned 3.25 times more than images with only one dominant color.
- Roughly 1/5 of all images on Pinterest feature a face. Brand images without faces in them are 23% more likely to be re-pinned.
- Users are twice as likely to re-pin images with red, orange, or brown colors than those with blue.
- Images with less than 30% background are more likely to be re-pinned than any other image. The more background an image has, the less likely users are to re-pin it.
The ideal Pinterest image should be roughly 725 pixels wide by 1102 pixels high. You can make images larger or smaller, but studies show this image resolution size is the best for engagement.
#2: Schedule and Post Pins at the Best Times of the Day
Like Facebook and Twitter, there are better times to post on Pinterest than others. Posting at the wrong time of day can greatly hinder your engagement, while posting at peak engagement times can boost your reach significantly.
So what are the best times to post on Pinterest? According to our research, the best day to post on Pinterest is Saturday, with Friday as a close runner-up. The best time of day to post on Saturday is between the hours of 8-11PM, whereas the best time to post on Friday is around 3PM (when engagement is at a high because many working individuals are leaving their final shift of the week).
When you're not posting on the weekends, the best times to post are:
8-11PM, with 9PM being the peak
2-4AM and 2-4PM
#3: Create a Pinterest Ad
Recently, Pinterest launched their own advertising program. It's similar to Facebook and Twitter's, but generally offers the most engagement for the lowest investment (depending on your niche, audience, and the quality of your ad).
It's easy to create a Pinterest ad:
Make a list of your best pins. They should relate to your brand and your message.
Choose a pin to promote.
Set up your targeting strategy. Who do you want to see your pin? Who will be most likely to follow your link?
Choose how you pay for engagement. You can pay according to pin engagements or site visits.
Track your ad.
Make changes accordingly to optimize your ad's performance.
Promoted pins show up in search results like any other pin, but they will have a small “promoted pin” tag in the lower left-hand corner. They're hard to discern from organic pins right away, so users will be less likely to skip over it because it's a promoted post (which I know I do sometimes on Facebook and Twitter!).
The best part about Promoted Pins? You only pay for what works. If you promote a pin and it garners zero clicks, you won't have to pay a dime. You can choose how you pay for your Promoted Pins once you've set them up, but you'll never pay for what doesn't work.
#4: Use Calls-to-Action in Each of Your Posts
Calls-to-Action (CTA's) are powerful. You can earn a ton of engagement by simply asking your audience to do something.
How well do CTA's work? According to a recent study by Quicksprout, pins with a call-to-action experience an 80% increase in engagement from those that don't. If you aren't using CTA's, you're missing out on re-pins and link follows.
What are some effective calls-to-action you can use on Pinterest?
Ask your audience to share your post.
Offer a sign-up prompt.
Request RSVP's to an event.
Offer a free gift or download.
Ask your audience to pin your post for later.
Direct your audience to your website to see more of your products or content.
You can use CTA's in your image caption, or in the image itself. Both methods are effective, but you might experience more engagement if your CTA is featured in the image.
#5: Write Effective Pin Descriptions
An image is worth a thousand words, but image descriptions are important, too. Each of your pins should feature some kind of pin description. Descriptions with between 100 and 200 characters get the most re-pins, according to findings by Social Marketing Writing.
Pin descriptions should give a brief overview of the product or post the pin image will link too. Great pin descriptions give your readers an accurate idea of what they're about to see or read, without stretching the truth.
To write effective Pinterest descriptions:
- Don't use hashtags – they won't impact your search ranking.
- Offer details about your product or blog post.
- Create short descriptions, since only 75-100 words will show up in grid view.
- Use relevant keywords in your descriptions.
#6: Create Numerous Boards Relevant to Your Niche
When I get on Pinterest, I look for organized boards with the information I can use. I don't look for random boards entitled “Stuff I Like,” because I know many of the pins probably won't relate to me. And I'm not the only Pinterest user who looks for well-organized boards.
Create Pinterest boards related to your brand. Give them keyword-rich titles, and only post relevant pins to your boards.
Don't be afraid to make numerous boards, dedicated to specific categories. Without enough boards, your profile might look bare, and it might push your audience away.
#7: Re-Pin Content From Other Pinterest Users
With millions of users, there's a lot of valuable content on Pinterest. You want to get the most engagement from your own, but sharing other content is a great way to reach larger audiences.
Whether or not sharing content will help your engagement depends on what you're sharing. To find pins worth sharing:
- Use Pinterest's search bar to find keywords relevant to your brand.
- Find helpful pins related to your search query.
- Save the best pins you can find.
- Choose the board you want to share your pin on.
- Share the pin.
#8: Choose Attractive Cover Images For Your Boards
Each board you create can feature a cover image. These cover images work similarly to those on Facebook. They can catch your reader's attention and bring more engagement to your boards.
How you create or select your board cover images is up to you. You can include your brand colors, logos, and other parts of your visual message you want to share with your audience. You might also consider using a few descriptive words in your cover image to clearly communicate what it's about.
Pinterest cover images should have a resolution of 217 x 147. After you've created an image, you can set it as the cover in your board's settings.
#9: Create Group Boards to Reach More People
In addition to personal boards, you can create group boards on Pinterest. Group boards let you add collaborators. Collaborators can add their own content to your group board, and share it with their own audience.
Collaborating helps you collect more valuable information than you would on your own, and share it with your audience. It also means more people will be able to find your posts and boards, because they'll see you as a collaborating account on the board.
#10: Pay Attention to Pinterest Analytics to Improve Your Strategy
We're offering basic tips you can use to boost your Pinterest engagement, but you won't know how well they work until you measure your results.
Pinterest offers a very useful analytics tool you can use to learn everything about your account, your pins, and your audience. You can see which boards and pins have the most clicks, re-pins, and overall impressions, then use this data to alter your sharing strategy.
You can access Pinterest analytics from the upper left-hand corner of the Pinterest homepage. From here, you can get an overview of your account, see how many people you reach and which people you reach, and how much attention your website is getting as a result of your pins.
It's important to check your analytics regularly and keep tabs on any changes that occur because of your own efforts. Your analytics are potential your most powerful tool in garnering Pinterest engagement, so don't look over them in hopes of blindly getting your strategy right.
Pinterest is generally seen as the little brother to Facebook and Twitter. Many see it as a tool for moms to find recipes and for college students to find dorm inspiration, but it's grown into a very powerful business and marketing tool since its launch several years ago.
If you're not using Pinterest for your business, you could be missing out on huge potential audiences. By following our guide, you can attract more attention to your pins and boards, and direct more leads to your Shopify store or website.