The Ultimate Pinterest Marketing Course

Pinterest marketing is using Pinterest as a tool to increase the awareness of your business. This Pinterest marketing course is not just for bloggers but also for any business looking to increase their audience utilizing a visual platform. Pinterest drives organic traffic back to a website and helps increase the overall awareness of a brand or business.

How Pinterest Marketing Works

Our first step in this Pinterest marketing course is to understand the methodology behind it. Pinterest is a social media platform that allows users to share visual content, similar to Instagram, but it differs in that every Pin can be linked back to your website or other content. Instagram currently only allows links in ads or the biography section, so it is not useful if you are looking for traffic to your website, product pages, or blog.

Sharing or posting content on Pinterest is called “pinning.” Users “pin” a piece of new content to a “board.” A board is a collection of Pins that usually share a common theme. You can create new boards around any topic from classic cars to parenting tips.

Pinterest users typically use the platform to save ideas and products that they want to remember or revisit later. It is also used to bookmark articles or blog posts that you want to read later. Pinterest is different from other “social media” networks because it focuses more on research and inspiration. While Facebook and Instagram focus more on sharing information or posting about your life, Pinterest is for inspiration, research, and buying.

While Pinterest is smaller than some of the other social media sites, as of May 2018, it is responsible for 65 percent of all sales from social media. Referral traffic means that people start on one site but from that site are given a link or content that refers them to a different site.

Unique Pinterest Features

Pinterest has some unique features that make it appealing to those that might not respond to marketing on other platforms. It uses an old-school Pinboard idea to save things that the users might be interested in or may want to buy later.

Here are a few of those features:

  • Boards: Boards are containers of similarly categorized content; each board contains content with a similar theme or interest; for example, one board might be “New Mom Advice” while another is about protecting your finances “Long-term Financial Planning for Millennials”
  • Secret boards: Secret boards are the same as boards, except no one but you or those you’ve invited to Pin on that board with you is able to see a secret board; you can make a secret board public at any time
  • Group boards: Group boards work the same as regular boards except there are multiple pinners sharing content on a group board
  • Pin: A Pin is a graphic or image that you add to a board; a Pin will usually link to an external website like a blog post, sales page or product page
  • Repin: Repinning is when you take someone’s content that was already pinned on Pinterest and Pin it to one of your own boards; by repinning, you’re sharing it on your own Pinterest profile

While Pinterest is well-known for its food, health, and travel posts, it’s also a platform that can take ordinary or even dry topics and make them engaging and interesting. For example, website developers and financial planners all successfully use Pinterest to teach “dry” topics like banking and coding. Divorce attorneys and project managers can offer their most helpful content to those who are searching for answers or the latest inspirations on that topic.

Pinterest offers some of the greatest return on investment (ROI) available in marketing online. Most Pinterest users are actively looking for brands or companies from which to purchase. No matter what product or service you offer, the chances are that your client is actively searching for it on Pinterest.

Pinterest is focused on giving its users the content that will interest them most, and what they can generate inspiration from. Pinterest’s main goal is to “connect everyone in the world through the ‘things they find interesting.” So, you can use Pinterest effectively by finding ways to interest and inspire your potential customers.

Who This Pinterest Marketing Course Is Right For

macbook pro on white textile
Image Source: Laura Chouette

This Pinterest marketing course is for those that want to increase their brand or company awareness, get more traffic to a company website or increase overall revenue. If any of these is a goal, you should consider using Pinterest as part of your marketing. There are surprising industries that are doing incredibly well on Pinterest like financial advisors, banks, attorneys, and tax advisors.

Businesses and professions taking advantage of our Pinterest marketing course include:

  • Counseling services: Counselors can post tips, advice, blog content and pins to other helpful resources
  • Financial advisors: Advisers can Pin blog content, testimonials, infographics or links to lead magnets that encourage engagement
  • Real estate agents: Agents can Pin testimonials, consultation tips and blog content that are great for agent exposure
  • Attorneys: Tips on hiring an attorney, humor, blog content and lead magnets are all great options for attorneys using Pinterest

If your business has seen a loss of organic traffic from the changes that Facebook has made with its business pages and with the Twitter mute button, Pinterest can increase your social media traffic once again. Pinterest has seen a steady increase in referral traffic of 27.5 percent year over year while Facebook’s share of referral traffic is down 25.8 percent.

If your business is focused on producing amazing content that you would like to get more visibility than what a Facebook post or a few tweets can provide, Pinterest is a wonderful platform to solve that. Because of Pinterest’s search engine, you can see a blog post or article resurface as a popular Pin that is bringing traffic to your website, long after you first pinned it. Many users have seen traffic from a blog post for several years after first posting it.

Now that we have explored who Pinterest is best for, which is any business that wants additional awareness, website traffic, leads, and sales, we will talk about how to get started setting up your Pinterest business account.

How to Market on Pinterest in 8 Steps

Now we’re getting to the most important part of this Pinterest marketing course. We’ve gone over the basics and thoroughly discussed how Pinterest can be used to market your business professionally. This part of our marketing course is the step-by-step guide to using this platform. 

1. Set Up Your Pinterest Business Account

Setting up a business account on Pinterest grants access to critical advertising features, such as analytics, reporting, board showcases, and added profile elements as well as the ability to create a “Pin it” button for your website. Promoted and buyable pins are also only available to those with a business account.

Here is how to set up your Pinterest business account.

Navigate to the Pinterest Business Portal

Go to business.Pinterest.com. Once you land on the Pinterest business page, select “Sign Up.” Then, enter your email address, password, and business name.

Choose Your Business Name

Use some care when selecting your business name. Instead of just putting in the name of your company, stop and think about what people might look for if they were searching for your company on Pinterest. Incorporate keywords into your business name to ensure you can be found.

Pinterest allows you to change your business name at any time, so if you want to change it later, you can. Adding a business name that is what you do as opposed to your legal business name won’t eliminate your branding, so consider it. After all, you will have a logo, colors, and website as part of your profile as well.

Fill in your email address, business name, password, and select a business type. Then, click “Create account” to get started.

2. Establish Your Pinterest Branding

Log in to your Pinterest Business account and add some details that will establish your branding for your profile. Click on the button that has the three dots in the top right corner, and then click on settings.

This will take you to Business Account Basics. If you scroll down that page, you will see a section entitled Profile. Here, you want to fill out each section, including uploading your logo where it says Picture. You also want to take a few minutes to write a description that is interesting and has a few keywords that people may use when they are searching for what your business does or the type of products you offer.

3. Claim Your Website

If you continue to scroll down your setting page, you will see a spot that says “Claim,” you want to enter your website into the box and hit the “Claim” button. This will allow you to track any pins that are pinned from your website and your profile picture — in this case, your logo — will show up next to any Pins that come from your website as well as create ads and buyable pins.

Once you hit the Claim button, you are given instructions on how to verify and claim your website. These instructions include placing a tag or code on your website for verification. You can have someone on your team place a specific code on your website or, if you need someone else to handle this rather tech-savvy step, you can hire someone from Fiverr to do it for you.

4. Determine Your Pinterest Audience

Since Pinterest is a site that caters to the interests and dreams of its users, you want to decide what those are for your target audience. In our Pinterest marketing course, we believe determining your audience now also allows you to create and Pin content that speaks directly to them and set up a pinning schedule that will get the most visibility with your ideal audience.

Create a Customer Profile

  • Interests: What interests your ideal audience? What are their hobbies? What do they read or watch? What information is your ideal audience searching for?
  • Habits: Do they have specific habits, like doing their financial planning once a year or shopping for groceries every Friday? Do they typically look for advice on a certain day?
    What is the age, gender and average income of your ideal customer?

Combine all of this into a customer profile so that you can refer to it to create the most appealing content for your audience. In researching for this course, we found that these are the best criteria for Pinterest Marketing audience determination.

5. Create Your First 10 Pinterest Boards

Now you want to create your first boards. Best practices suggest that you start with 10 boards. Boards are basically content buckets, and these first few boards should align with your customer profile.

Divide Your Boards Between Business and Interests

As a general rule, you want your boards to be 50 percent about your business and 50 percent about the interests of your audience that tie back to your business. By pinning your audience’s interest as well as your own content, you will entice them to engage with you more on Pinterest. When they engage with you more, Pinterest will show users your content more frequently in their feed.

For example, if you are a divorce counselor, you can post blogs and tips that come directly from you, but you might also want to include a board on how to relieve stress during tough emotional times since your audience will be dealing with massive stress when they are working with you.

Name Your Boards

The names you create for your boards should be based on the keywords, terms, or phrases that people will use when they search for the topic of your board. If people can’t find your board, they’re not going to find your board’s content. So, choose a board name your audience will use looking for your content. Boards are searchable, so don’t miss an opportunity to get found.

Pinterest offers this advice about naming your boards:

To surface your boards on Pinterest’s board search, use meaningful names that Pinners are likely to search for. Have a mix of both boards with specific names like “Salvador Dali Prints” and more broad ones like “Fine Art Prints.”

Be sure to avoid board names that are more cute than descriptive. It is more important that your boards get found than to have a cute name. If you need some help thinking of optimal names for your boards, think about the keywords you might use to search for a certain topic. You can also take a look at the keywords on your website or the categories on your blog for more ideas on how to name your boards.

Write Descriptions of Your Boards

When discussing this marketing course, we realized that in order to succeed in Pinterest marketing, you need to optimize the naming of your boards. Writing targeted, specific and compelling descriptions of your boards will make them easier to find for your audience as well. A Pinterest board description can be up to 500 characters, but most descriptions should be a sentence or two with 25 words being the ideal length. You want your board descriptions to use two to four targeted keywords and be as industry-, niche- and content-specific as possible.

Keywords are the words that your ideal audience would use to look for what your business does on Pinterest. In order to be as visible as possible, you want to make sure that your pins are discovered easily, which is where careful keyword choices can be helpful. The best way to find the right keywords for your business on Pinterest is to actually perform Pinterest searches on your own to see what comes up on Pinterest.

First, do some searching on Pinterest so that you understand how Pinterest searching works. Then, take note of which results show up first and how the Pinterest feed organizes the pins and boards. Notice which keywords are suggested as being together automatically and which of these keywords are relevant to your pins. You want to do these searches on both desktop and mobile devices so that you understand what looks different on each device.

Complete Your Board Description

One of the best ways to know if your board description is complete is to ask yourself if a stranger would know what your board was about by reading it. Write your board description to be engaging and concise but also thorough.

6. Create Customized Covers for Your Pinterest Boards

Now that you have your boards created, you want to create customized board covers. Taking the time to do this will help you to establish your professionalism and solidify your unique identity on Pinterest. Board covers allow you to put your branding on the front of every board, which gives your profile a polish that most business profiles don’t have.

Since Pinterest is a visual site, you want to be certain that your profile is always visually appealing. Almost anything is more attractive and appealing when they share colors and formats. This is what you want to do for your Pinterest boards.

black ipad on brown wooden table
Image Source: Fahim R.

Create a Board Cover Image Template

The easiest way to have branded board covers for all of your boards is to create a template that you can modify easily. You can do this using Canva, or you can hire someone from Fiverr to create a template or even all your board covers for you.

Create a board cover, with your branding that is 800×1680 pixels, and put the name of your board at the top so that it doesn’t get cropped off in the Pinterest feed. Save this template, and then just change the name of the board for each board on your Pinterest account.

Upload Your Board Covers

Once you have the board covers for your first 10 boards, you can upload them to the boards you created. You do this by clicking on the board you want to add a cover too, and then clicking on the pencil in the top center. This pulls up a box that will have a spot labeled Cover. Click the button that says “Change” and upload your new board cover.

Once you have all your board covers updated, you will see beautiful results. 

7. Develop Your Pinning Calendar

Decide what strategy will work best for your Pinterest marketing. Your strategy should determine what types of content your ideal audience will enjoy seeing on Pinterest, how often you create and Pin that content, and when you interact with your audience on Pinterest.

Pin Your Own Content

If you want to be effective in gaining more traffic to your website by using Pinterest marketing, then you have to create pins of your content that will stand out from the thousands of other pins on Pinterest. Think creatively about what you pin.

Think about what complimentary content you could create around your specific niche. For instance, if you’re in the party planning industry, don’t just Pin party decorations. Consider other party-related categories you could explore — perhaps parties for “over the hill,” golden anniversary gatherings, themed parties, or backyard get-togethers.

One trick is to use various quotes from your most recent blog post or testimonials about your recent product and link to the website page many different times. You can also Pin the same Pin to different boards. For example, if you write a blog post about buying the best homeowners insurance, that can go on a board that only holds your blog posts, it can also go on a board that talks about financial planning and a board that talks about homeownership.

Repin Others’ Content

You should also repin content that your audience would like to your boards. No matter how much content you create, your audience will want more. Repinning other people’s content helps give that to them. It also helps build rapport with those whose content you’re repinning to share with your audience. You should view your social media content as being a resource to those that follow you, so give them valuable content, both yours and others.

Ideally, you don’t want to repin pins that deal directly with a topic that you have content about as you want to keep people reading your own content, not a competitor’s. However, you can repin things that might give additional or complementary information. For example, if you write about do-it-yourself home projects often, but you don’t have any content on how to restore old furniture, repinning some pins that are about that, might be helpful to your audience.

Pin Time-consciously

It is more effective to Pin multiple times a day than to Pin all at once. This is because the more consistently you Pin, the more Pinterest’s Smart Feed will show your pins. Your goal is to Pin five times per day. You can work up to this number by starting with two pins a day of your content and two repins. However, to be most effective you want to work up to pinning and repinning 10 times a day.

It is also important to Pin in the evenings and on weekends because Pinterest receives a substantial amount of mobile traffic at these times. You can use a tool like Tailwind to schedule your pins throughout the day, in the evening, and on weekends so that your efforts will be most effective in reaching your audience.

8. Consider Pinterest Advertising

This is the last step in our Pinterest marketing course, but it is not to be underestimated. Pinterest ads are a pay-for-placement structure, meaning that you pay for your ads to be placed in the Pinterest feed or in Pinterest search in a way that targets your ideal audience. Pinterest ads contain an image, description or caption, and link and are displayed in users’ feeds or search results.

Pinterest ads blend in with other pins and, often, users have reported enjoying seeing an ad because it exposed them to new products or brands that they may have missed otherwise.

Since many Pinterest users utilize Pinterest to save creative ideas, informative content, and unique products to go back and purchase them later, Pinterest is an ideal tool for businesses selling services, products, or promoting your content. In fact, 93 percent of users plan purchases with Pinterest, and 87 percent actually make a purchase because of something they saw on the platform.

Set Up Your Pinterest Ads Account

To get started with Pinterest advertising, you need to set up your Pinterest advertising account. You do this by logging into your business Pinterest account and clicking on ads in the top left corner. This will bring you to a set-up page.

Choose Your Goal

To create a Pinterest ad campaign, you want to click on the “+” button from your business profile and choose “Create ad” from the options. Now, you need to select what type of campaign you want to create.

Set Your Budget and Placements

You need to determine where you want your Pinterest ad to run and how much you want to spend on a particular campaign. This is the total for the campaign, and you will get a chance to set a daily limit later.

Determine Your Audience

You choose who will see your Pinterest ad by selecting a target that will respond the best to your service, content, or product. You can target your Pinterest ads by interests, location, language, device, gender, keywords, or even prebuilt audiences based on your own business data.

Set Your Bid

Setting the bid for your ads by deciding the maximum amount you are willing to pay for the desired action — click, repin, or impression — on Pinterest. Pinterest does suggest these limits for you and a good rule of thumb is to stay within their guidelines.

Select Your Pin

Select the Pin that you want to promote in this campaign. This is what Pinterest users see when they are shown your ad.

Your Pin directs those that click on it to the website that you want to direct traffic to, so you want to add in your correct link in this last step.

Go Live

Now, hit submit, and your ad will be sent to Pinterest for approval. Once it is approved, it will go live and be served to the audience that you chose.

Statistics on Pinterest Marketing

Image Source: lilzidesigns

These are statistics we found when researching content for this Pinterest marketing course.

  • Pinterest reaches 83 percent of all women 25 to 54 in the United States, which is more than Instagram, Snapchat and Twitter
  • Pinterest pins last 1,600 times longer than a Facebook post
  • 78 percent of Pinterest users say that content from a business has helped them make better purchasing decisions
  • 60 percent of Pinterest user say they’ve discovered a new brand or product from Pinterest
  • Pinterest users spend 29 percent more on purchases than users from other social media sites
  • 10 percent of Pinterest users make $125,000 a year or more
  • 87 percent of Pinterest user say they purchased a product or service they didn’t know about previously after seeing it on Pinterest

Wrapping Up The Ultimate Pinterest Markting Course

This is the end of our course. Pinterest Marketing is a unique way to reach a new audience and grow your business’ overall awareness and revenue. By using Pinterest effectively, you can grow your website traffic, increase leads, email subscriptions, and sales. Hopefully, you’ve gained some insight from our Pinterest Marketing Course and will be able to apply these concepts to your marketing strategy.

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