Business Hacks to Grow your List with Pinterest

Growing your list with Pinterest can be both effective and fun. You simply need a bit of creativity and outside-the-box thinking to make some kick-butt pictures that tell a story, engage your readers, and ultimately get clicks from those readers who will register for your list. Try these business hacks to grow your list with Pinterest and then bask in your awesome results.

Understand Your Niche

Before you jump into Pinterest, you need to make sure you thoroughly understand your niche and audience. This allows you to narrow your focus and only include areas that interest your audience which makes a huge difference in competition and budget. Even further is the fact that when narrow down your niche, you’ll attract more readers who are right for your list rather than those who won’t engage and buy your books.

Know Your Audience Well

Your audience is one of the most important things to consider when marketing on Pinterest. You need to know what boards they look at, who they follow, and the problems they want solved. What are their issues and how can you solve them within your narrow niche? For example, if you want to help mothers of toddlers get organized, you need to understand who they are and what their lives are like before you recommend your new organizational eBooks to them.

Optimize Your Profile

Your profile is an important aspect of your presence on Pinterest. If your profile isn’t optimized, your audience may never find you. Optimizing your profile is one thing that will improve your results within days of optimization.

Your Pinterest profile

Get a Business Account

Using a personal account for your author business doesn’t work too well. You’ll want to convert your personal account to a business account for the increased features you’ll get. And don’t worry, a business account is still free. Plus, it doesn’t take much time to convert since Pinterest makes it super easy. You’ll be able to brand your account easier, hold contests, and become a verified business. (Plus so much more!)

Add Back Links to Your Pins

When readers click on your pins, they should be redirected to a landing page you’ve made just for them rather than a generic landing page you shared to everything. This will help your conversion rate.

Use Rich Pins (HTML text)

A rich pin is one that lets you put additional info about a pin directly into the pin description itself. You can add info about apps, products, recipes, or articles. You’ll need to add the option for rich pins to your account first.

  • App Pin. This kind of pin shows an “install” button on the image which will let people download the app within Pinterest.
  • Product Pin. The product pin allows visitors to shop your books/products because it shows pricing, where they can buy and whether the product is available.
  • Recipe Pin. This type of pin allows you to put the recipe information on the pin.
  • Article Pin. An article pin ensures each pin shows the headline, author, and description of an article before they click to visit the article’s page.

Rich pins are a great way to make your pins stand out from the rest and get you more attention, engagement, and conversions to your list.

Use Eye-Catching Images

Use images that will stand out from the crowd. Ones that will attract your audience, are easy to understand at a glance, and will encourage clicks to your site. Consider the colors, types of photos, overlay text, and overall design. Don’t think of pins as stand-alone images. Think about how they look together, how you organize them and what they say about you and your brand. I also want you to ensure the images are the right size for Pinterest.

Remember SEO

To correctly use SEO—Search Engine Optimization—you need to know how your audience searches for solutions and products. Do they look for “you” as a brand or use generic terms? Also keep in mind that since Pinterest’s biggest source of traffic comes from mobile devices, pins need to be very visual.

Your SEO is going to begin with creating a business account (as we discussed earlier). Use an SEO-friendly username and fill out your entire profile including the “about you” section. Add a great logo that has a keyword-friendly title. For example, don’t just make the filename “logo.” Give it a name that applies to the category of books or information you want to promote.

To get started, create a board that has at least eight pins and make sure they link to your specialized landing pages. Your site should be ready for Pinterest, too, by adding share buttons. Ensure you’re using images that are the right size for Pinterest and don’t forget to verify your website via your Pinterest settings.

You should also do keyword research so you can understand what your audience searches for. Pinterest has something called “guided search” which you can use to find more keywords. Engaging with pins and searching topics that Pinterest has categorized and organized already helps out, too.

Organize Your Boards and Cover Images

I want you to set goals for yourself, so you know why you’re using Pinterest and what you’re trying to accomplish. For the purpose of these hacks, your goal is to grow your list. Since that’s your goal, you’ll want to create images for your pins that show the info right on the pin explaining why they should click and what they’ll get out of it.

Don’t just let Pinterest organize your pins willy nilly! Instead, reorganize your boards so that when someone is visiting, they’ll understand the theme. Choose the right cover images to tell your story. Eventually, you’ll create boards that address every kind of engagement and interaction you’ll want with your audience. For example, if your topic is about moms organizing their homes with toddlers in the house, you might have boards titled, “Toy Organizing Options Under $25” or “Laundry Room Organization.”

Advertise on Pinterest

A great way to get views and clicks on your pins is to pay to promote your Pinterest pins. You have to have a business account (!) and then get approval to promote your pins. It’ll take some time to grow and build your Pinterest account, but it’s increased size and cohesiveness that will get you approved quicker.

Don’t forget to learn the advertising rules! Read them when you apply for promoted pins. Most are pretty obvious: you can’t use other people’s brands, no CTAs on the pin, no drugs, no alcohol, no guns, and no porn. Plus, you can’t have more than one hashtag in your pin description. This is one area that snags people up when submitting their pins for promotion. Pinterest rules can change—quickly—so be sure you read them!

Once you’re approved to promote pins, pick the right one (from one of your own boards) that will help you build your list. That means the link to the pin goes to a landing page on your site so they can sign up for your email list. That’s what we want, right?!

Watch Pinterest for Updates

Constantly check for Pinterest updates as they’re always updating their features and functionality. They keep everyone updated via their blog so make sure you read it as often as possible to remain in the know.

Your Pinterest account should be optimized in the ways I mentioned so you’ll continue to get the most useful views. You want readers who visit your boards to want to keep looking at them because they find what they’ve been searching for.

Create Dedicated Landing Pages

To make this entire process work, you need to create dedicated landing pages for your pins. You want your Pinterest readers to click on one of your pins and be taken to a page that encourages them to register for your list in some way. It can lead them to a simple sign-up form, a lead magnet, or any other item that encourages engagement and signups for your email list.

Show Your Personality

Don’t be afraid to show your true personality on Pinterest. Yup, your personal brand should have a personality, or “brand voice.” The words, images, and way you describe things all contribute to that personality. Know how you want to portray yourself and create copy that matches that presentation. You may want to be sincere, spirited, reliable, charming, or tough. It depends on what you’re marketing and to whom, as well as what your audience likes. You may need to study your audience a bit so you know exactly who they are and what type of personality you want to project.

Show Social Proof

One good way to show social proof on Pinterest is to participate in group boards as well as host your own group boards on Pinterest. Both are awesome ways to show social proof. To get your bearings at first, join a group board and then sit back and watch how it all works. Once you’re sure you’ve got the gist, you’ll want to participate and then possibly host a group board that attracts your readers so they can register for your list.

Offer Content Upgrades

When you post something that links to a blog post readers will click through to read, you’ll want to give them a reason to sign up for your list (other than just a generic form/request). A good way to do this is to add content upgrades to your blog posts.

A content upgrade is an in-content link to more information about your blog post’s content, usually in the form of a PDF file. Upgraded content typically requires your readers to provide an email address in order to download the offer.

Provide Incentives

You’ll want to give your readers a lot of value through incentivizing your pins. Instead of your pin linking to just one blog post on a topic, it can link to several blog posts, a few lead magnets, and more info that focuses on your audience’s needs.

Use Some Automation

Keeping your boards up-to-date can take up a lot of your time. You want to build up your boards with amazing content as well as follow people so that they’ll follow you in return, which happens much of the time. One good way to build followers is to set up automation software so that you’ll automatically follow anyone who follows you.

Another way to use automation with Pinterest is to use something that will schedule pins for you, just like you can schedule Facebook and Twitter updates and blog posts. Even adding a “pin it” button on your site so all of your images can be pinned will encourage readers to pin your content. There is so much that can be automated for you, but you want to make sure that whatever you do serves its purpose when it comes to keeping your Pinterest marketing focused and engaging.

Some software to investigate using:

  • Tailwindapp.com. Tailwind helps you find content, schedule posts, and monitor engagement.
  • Buffer.com. Buffer works with a lot of social media sites including Pinterest and will help you save time by scheduling posts and analyzing how everything works.
  • Pinpinterest.com. Built to help you get more followers, you can schedule pins, auto follow, pin content, and even more. Since it’s cloud-based, there’s nothing to download.
  • Viraltag.com. Viraltag helps you share visual content as well as recycle content by simply adding it to your schedule. You can even have a team, review analytics, and collaborate with others.

The main key when it comes to automation is to refrain from using it as a replacement for organic engagement. You’ll still want to respond to comments, make your own, and engage with your readers. As you build your engagement, even readers who don’t wish to comment will still begin to trust you more, visit your site, and register for your list.

Building your list with Pinterest can be a very effective path to list growth, but keep in mind that it takes time. It’s all about the long game with Pinterest. If you follow the process, each step builds on the next and will snowball your results over time. Get going now so you can enjoy this effective, creative, and fun way to grow your list.

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Celia Kyle

Celia Kyle is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of paranormal and science fiction romance, as well as non-fiction for authors.

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