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7 Ways to Increase Your Website Traffic With Pinterest

7 Ways to Drive More Website Traffic with Pinterest by Vincent Ng MCNGmarketing.com

1. Add Your Website to Your Pinterest Profile

One of the first things that every business should do once they start their Pinterest account is to add their website to their profile. To add your website, all you need to do is go to “Settings” and click on “Edit Profile.” At the bottom you’ll be able to add any website.

How to Drive More Web Traffic to Your Website with Pinterest by Vincent Ng mcngmarketing.com

However, if you are running a business then I highly suggest that you validate your Pinterest account as a business account.

When you validate your business account, your website will receive a check mark next to it to indicate that the website does belong to you. This is great for brand protection. It’s very easy for any user on Pinterest to put in your website and pretend to be you. The only thing that gives other users confidence that you do own that website is the check mark.

2. Have Your Website Mentioned in the Alt Tags of Your Pictures

As Pinterest has now become the second largest social referrer for online publishers, one of the best ways to maximize the traffic to your website is to actually have the website in your alt tags. This is because Pinterest’s official pin it buttons will scrape alt tags for their descriptions.

Donna Moritz of Socially Sorted does a wonderful job of putting her website in the alt tag of her photos.

How to Drive More Web Traffic to Your Website with Pinterest by Vincent Ng mcngmarketing.com

This way anybody that does pin from your website with any official pin it button will now have the website mentioned in the pin’s description (unless they choose to change the Pinterest description). People can technically change the description, but most users generally don’t.

3. Add Your Website to Your Pin’s Description

If you’ve created a pin, and you want to drive traffic back to your site, then putting your website, or a specific url you want people to visit, in your pin’s description can help drive more traffic to your site. This way when people read the description they’re able to click on it.

The website is only clickable on desktop versions of Pinterest, and the url does get cut short, but will be bolded when shown on the news feed.

This can be extremely helpful in attracting more web traffic from people who are using Pinterest for the first time and may not know that they need to click twice on a pin to visit your website. (The first click enlarges the pin, the second click goes to the website.)

How to Drive More Web Traffic to Your Website with Pinterest by Vincent Ng mcngmarketing.com

Even though people aren’t able to click on the website in the description on mobile versions, the actual website will be highlighted to help it stand out.

4. Put Your Website Address Inside Your Pins

Putting your website is a great way to put your website in front of tens of thousands to millions of people. As more and more people see your website from your pins, the more they’re going to be curious to visit it and offers your brand more credibility.

I encourage all Pinterest users to make sure that their website is, at the very least, visible on the mobile versions of Pinterest when their pin is clicked on. If your website is too tiny to see then it doesn’t help grow your brand.

Another reason to put your website on your own pins is to protect your brand and visuals.

I’ve seen many of my pins hijacked by other users and have them redirected to a different site that’s not mine. The only way that Pinterest that see that pin know where to find the pin’s content is through the website.

Mitt Ray from Social Marketing Writing always makes his websites very clear in his pins’ visual.

How to Drive More Traffic to Your Website with Pinterest by Vincent Ng mcngmarketing.com

5. Add Rich Pins to Your Pinterest Account

In terms of maintaining a great online reputation on Pinterest, nothing beats rich pins.

Rich pins are additional pieces of information that are added to a pin. Right now rich pins are available for recipes, products, movies and online articles. This additional information can include such things as ingredients for the recipe, the price of the product, or the official title of the online article.

How to Drive More Traffic to Your Website with Pinterest by Vincent Ng mcngmarketing.com

What’s great about rich pins is that it adds that extra call to action within your pins. Depending on what type of rich pin you’re looking to have you may need a webmaster, or if you run a WordPress site then you can consider using Yoast SEO for your blog, and there’s APG plugin for the other 3.

Here’s a rich pin for a blog, notice the call to action. This is automatically put there by Pinterest and it leads back to the site where the pin originates from.

How to Drive More Traffic to Your Website with Pinterest by Vincent Ng mcngmarketing.com

6. Link Uploaded Photos Back to Your Site

One of the great things about Pinterest is that you can actually create photos that are related to your industry and have them relayed back to your site. Sony Electronic’s Pinterest board, “I Can haz Gadgets” does this.

Here’s a picture of a cute dog with a speaker made by Sony. When this pin is clicked on, it leads directly back to an e-store operated by Sony Electronics that sells the speaker that’s seen in the pin.

How to Drive Traffic to Your Website with Pinterest by Vincent Ng MCNGMarketing.com

This way you don’t always have to use the pictures that are on your website. You can use those other photos, or create graphics that lure your customers in with curiosity.

To redirect the photo to a site that you want, all you need to do is edit the pin, and change the source of it.

Here’s a pin created by Kelly Liebermann of #PinChat about Hello Society. Notice at the bottom that you can edit the web address of the pin. You can technically change the web address of any pin that you’ve uploaded or repinned, but I don’t advise that you change another pinner’s source unless you are trying to redirect it to the original source of the pin.

How to Drive Traffic to Your Website with Pinterest by Vincent Ng MCNGmarketing.com

Add Your Website to Comments on Pinterest

Another place to add your website is in the comments section of Pinterest. However, this tactic should be used with the utmost care and caution. If you randomly place your website in comments then Pinterest will mark your efforts as spam, and you won’t be able to comment on pins for about 24 hours.

You should only leave a web address in the comments when you are trying to provide extra value to a customer, an influencer. Let’s say you noticed that an influencer pinned a blue bracelet from your website, you can respond to suggest that another great item would be this wonderful blue night gown and then provide a link.

My suggestion is that if you are trying to comment on people’s pins, that if there is one particular customer or influencer that you want to leave a url with in the comments, that you leave that as the very last comment of the day.

Keep the pin opened in a new tab as a way to remind yourself that that is the last pin to comment on for the day.

Now let’s hear from you, what are some fantastic ways to drive more web traffic from Pinterest? Leave a note in the comments section and share with the rest of the Pinteresting community.




Top 10 Resources for Mastering Pinterest Marketing

Want to master Pinterest marketing? Here are the top 10 blogs/resources to help you get started.

Mastering Pinterest marketing can take months, and with Pinterest making changes every other month, it’s difficult to keep up with all the changes. But your journey can be much easier by having valuable resources and tutorials.

Here are my top 10 resources and blogs to help you master Pinterest, whether it’s for your own personal use or for business.

The resources are not in any particular order.

1) Cynthia Sanchez of Oh So Pinteresting:

Cynthia Sanchez of Oh So Pinteresting has contributed articles to Social Media Examiner, and currently runs the only weekly podcast that’s dedicated to all things Pinterest.

Her podcasts cover a variety of topics such as, but not limited to, how writers can use Pinterest, how to improve business using Pinterest, and how podcasters can use Pinterest. Her podcast comes out every Wednesday and is found on found on Stitcher and Itunes.

Aside from running her podcast, she comes out with a blog post on Fridays where she offers more helpful tips on how to use Pinterest. One of my favourite articles that she recently wrote was focused on how Sony was using Pinterest for their business.

2) Mitt Ray of Social Marketing Writing

Mitt has contributed the most articles about Pinterest to Social Media Examiner. His own blog, Social Media Writing gives practical information and strongly focuses on “How to” information.

His blog post on 14 ways to drive more traffic using Pinterest is a great read for anybody starting off with Pinterest marketing, and offers some great reminders for seasoned Pinterest marketers.

3)Kelly Lieberman of Tribe2.0 and Founder of #PinChat

Kelly is the founder of #Pinchat, an online Twitter conversation that’s held weekly on Wednesdays at 9PM ET, 6PM PT, where she asks marketers from large businesses and organizations like Constant Contact, Marvel Entertainment and wikiHow to be guests of #PinChat.

During Twitter conversations people are able to find out how those businesses are using Pinterest, as well as connect with other Pinterest enthusiasts, influencers, and marketers. Kelly also does an amazing job of curating and sharing content on her #PinChat Google Plus Group.

4)Tailwind (Formerly Pinleague) – Melissa Megginson

Melissa is Tailwind’s current marketing manager and creates the large majority of the blog posts on Tailwind. She provides helpful content regarding B2B Pinterest marketing, as well as offering great tips on how businesses can improve their Pinterest marketing strategy.

Her article, 32 Do’s and Don’ts for Your Pinterest Marketing Strategy, has been directly pinned 467 times. Not an easy feat for any blog post.

5) Hello Society – Zoe Waldron and Ran Kim

Zoe and Ran are the content creators of the Hello Society blog. While their blog offers some great marketing advice, like “Pinterest for Non Traditional Brands,” it’s the fact they feature Pinterest influencers on their blog on a regular basis is what’s helpful.

Learning how Pinterest influencers think and how they engage with Pinterest can offer valuable insights on how marketers can engage with such influencers.

6) GoPixelMe (Formerly Pinster) – Dominic Tarn

Dominic is the Marketing Manager for the analytics company, GoPixel.me. Their blog posts often cover trends that are happening on Pinterest, while also informing readers of the latest Pinterest news.

7) Melissa Taylor of Pinterest Savvy

Melissa from Pinterst Savvy has over 1.5 million followers on her Pinterest account and is the authour of, Pinterest Savvy: How I got 1 Million + Followers. Her articles are great for those that are looking to grow their presence with their lifestyle blog.

8) Lorna Sixsmith of Write On Track

Lorna from Write on Track, is the writer of some great Pinterest articles, and uses real life examples to illustrate her points. While she doesn’t exclusively focus on Pinterest, her articles are valuable to andybody looking for case studies.

The article that I found most helpful is the one where she interviewed Jo Ann Hines, regarding growing and managing group boards on Pinterest.

9) Wishpond Blog

Wishpond produces infographics, great articles and looks at case studies regarding Pinterest, though they don’t write about Pinterest often, when they do, it’s worth reading.

They have a variety of writers on staff to help provide content. Their Pinterest article, 10 Amazing Pinterest Board Examples Critiqued, provides great insights and helpful strategies for businesses of any size using Pinterest.

10) Pinterest’s Business Blog and Oh How Pinteresting!

Pinterest’s Business Blog and Oh, How Pinteresting! are the two official blogs for Pinterest.

The business blog tends to focus on providing information that’s useful to developers as well as marketers. They recently released a series of videos that show how brands like Sony are using Pinterest.

Their other blog, Oh, How Pinteresting, focuses more on the personal side of Pinterest and it gives updates about changes happening on Pinterest, as well as tips on using Pinterest, and providing articles related to what’s trending and in season on Pinterest.

Are you looking for more resources to become a Pinterest expert? Don’t forget to sign up for our newsletter just below to get your free e-book on “How to Search Optimize your Pins and Boards For Pinterest and Search Engines.”

You’re Invited to Our First Ever Pinterest Link Party for Professionals

You are cordially invited to a link party for Pinterest professionals by MCNG Marketing. Get your marketing blog exposed to thousands.

Are you here to join the link party? Here’s the site for the link party.

What is a Link Party?

Now if you’re wondering what a link party (aka linky party) is, then you’re not alone. When I first heard of the concept from a podcast from Cynthia Sanchez, I didn’t quite understand what it was.

Simply put, a link party is a place where other bloggers can freely add their blog posts on someone else’s site. The person that has all the links on a particular blog post is known as the host.

The host of the link party sets up a designated time for people to start adding their articles on their own usually through programs like Inlinkz. And there is a time restriction as well, so posting can only be added during that time frame. It’s not uncommon for some bloggers to host weekly link parties, while others may do it monthly.

Every Link Party has Guidelines and Rules

The host is responsible for setting up guidelines. Some link parties require that you like the host’s Facebook page, or that you follow them on certain social networks. Others require that you put a badge of the host’s website before participation is allowed. It’s proper etiquette to ensure that no matter what link party you go to that you follow the host’s guidelines.

Link Parties are About Helping Each Other Out

The goal of a link party is to help both attendees and the host promote each other. This way almost everybody benefits from the link party. Community guidelines may require that you visit two additional blogs and comment on them, while others may ask you to Pin the article if you found it useful.

Link parties have been extremely popular among mommy, craft and food bloggers, but for some strange reason, and I don’t know why, there seems to be a lot of resistance from the social media marketing community, even though it’s been shown to drive more traffic to both the host’s website and those of that participate.

I believe creating a professional link party is fun, it’s different, and drives people to a host’s site.

Here’s a picture from the blog, The Girl Creative, this is what a bit of what a link party looks like.

Professional Pinterest Link party hosted by MCNG Marketing. www.mcngmarketing.com

Some link parties have only a few dozen, while I’ve seen others have up to 300 participants. And it can get a little crowded.

Proper Etiquette for Link Parties

When you attend a link party, it’s rude to do a link and run. Adding your link and not participating according to community guidelines.

Most link parties require that you have a thumbnail ready to go, so make sure you know what the exact size is. The link party I’m hosting will allow for 200X200, also be aware of the character limits allowed for the description. For the party I’m hosting, I’m limiting it to 50 characters.

Since the host has been gracious enough to host your link and help you drive traffic, it’s important to do what they’ve requested. If she’s asked you to like their Facebook page, please kindly do so.

And remember to send a thank you either by e-mail or in the comments. Remember it takes time to host these parties, and since anybody can come to the party, they are taking a leap of faith that you’ll be adding your best article or blog post.

Don’t add more than one article to the link party unless the host says it’s okay. Remember it’s about building a community, not a one person show.

And lastly, no spam, selling or any of that junk. Having a good relationship with the host and his or her readers is vital. And if a party is successful you can guarantee that the host will run one again. But don’t jeopardize that relationship for the quick sell.

How It’s Beneficial for Marketers and Bloggers

1) It gives smaller audience bloggers a chance to expose themselves to a larger audience. So if you just started a social media blog and want to get new readers, this is a great way to go.

2) It reaches a different audience. Each blogger will have a different audience and readership than yours, and this allows you to reach that new audience. I was able to reach a whole new audience by guest blogging with PinLeague.

3) It helps build relationships. At the party you’ll be required to interact with others, whether it’s through commenting, or repinning. This will help you engage with others in your community and develop relationships with influencers and like minded people. This could lead to partnerships and guest blogging opportunities.

4) It’s faster than guest blogging. Don’t have time to spend 3-5 hours guest blogging? Link parties are a good solution for the time strapped marketer.

I decided I wanted to host my own, and went to Linkedin to see if there were any responses from Pinterest marketers and enthusiasts. Though it wasn’t much it was a start, but Julie Gallaher from Get on the Map, Melissa Megginson from Pinleague, and Penney Fox from Inner Socialmedianess thought it was a great idea. We want to extend an invitation to all those that do blog about Pinterest as a marketer, or blogger to join us.

How do You Add Your Link to a Link Party?

Depending on the type of program the host is using, all you need to do is click on the add link button. You’ll see it on the bottom left hand side. From there there will be instructions on what to do next.

How to add a link to a Link Party using Inlinkz by MCNG Marketing.

When does MCNG Marketing Host their First Official Link party?

The party officially starts on Sept 4th (Wednesday at 5pm PT) and ends at Sept 11th 5PT, and you can participate by visiting our blog (remember, the people that come early get to be in the top spots of it). This means during that entire week people can add their own site.

To do this you must have a 200X200 pixel thumbnail ready, as well as 50 character description.

Each guest is allowed to only link one article that must be related to Pinterest marketing, (I will most likely open up one for social media in the near future). I highly encourage that the article be the best one you have, since peers may be repinning it. Now you’re probably wondering what’s the catch? You’re right to assume there is one. This is a party after all, and you can’t just link and go, that’s just poor etiquette.

Rule 1: You must Pin the featured picture of the blog post that the party is happening, that states that you are participating in a Professional Pinterest Link Party.

Rule 2: You must Pin content from two other party participants that you believe have great content. Try to pin stuff from people you haven’t connected with before if possible. This way we’re all pinning it forward. This way everyone in the community benefits.

Rule 3: Kindly link a blog article from MCNG Marketing on your next blog post. So this can be about the one where you participated in a link party.

Feel free to give it a test run right now! Add one of your previous post to it and see how full of awesomeness a link party can have.

Krishna De of KrishnaDe.com had a wonderful suggestion about providing the blog link ahead of time. Here’s the link to where the party will be hosted, but it won’t be ready until the morning of September 4th. For now it will lead to a blank website (404). But make sure you put this down in your calendar.

http://www.mcngmarketing.com/pinterest-link-party

[inlinkz_linkup id=310870 mode=1 pageSize=300]

3 Tips to Search Optimize Your Boards Within Pinterest

Want your boards to be found within Pinterest's search results? Here are three tips that will help your boards rank higher.

In a previous blog post I discussed how to make your pins more searchable within Pinterest, and how important it was to have them found. Pins being found in search is vital because any time you type a search term into Pinterest’s search box, it automatically shows results of pins. However, Pinterest is encouraging people not only to discover pins, but boards as well.

As of this weekend, Pinterest rolled out a new feature known as “Follow Boards.” I first saw this featured rolled out about a week ago for only a few hours, and then it disappeared, and now it’s back. Huzzah! BUT it’s still not available to all users, and is slowly being rolled out.

With this new feature, Pinterest now recommends boards that you should follow. It also displays different categories. When you click on them, you’ll find a series of boards that you can follow.

Another feature that has started to slowly roll out, is the search function on the top left hand side of the picture.

Pinterest rolled out a new feature. If you click on your account on the desktop version of Pinterest, you will see a new addition, "Follow Boards." Pinterest now recommends boards to follow, as well as the option to look for boards to follow based on categories and search results. Find out more on how to optimize your boards by visiting

If you would like to see a summary of what that’s all about then feel free to watch the video, but if you enjoy reading, then read on my friend.

Pinterest Wants Users to REALLY use the Search Boards Function

As the new features start to roll out for everyone, the ability to have your boards found for search terms is becoming absolutely critical. Pinterest knows that people are searching for specific pins, but wants to connect people more to boards and encourage users to search for boards.

Pinterest wants to make a big deal of featured boards (no doubt for future monetization) and board searching. It’s actually making the search board function redundant, since there already exists a search box for boards on the top left hand corner of the desktop version.

But Pinterest has also added the search boards box into the new “Follow boards” menu. There’s two different places that a user can use the search box, trying to raise the profile of that particular search option.

I decided to do a search in both those different boxes. As you can see from the photo below, both showed the exact same results. Both are using the same algorithm to determine which boards to show a user for a search term. This is why, if you haven’t, you really need to start search optimizing your boards for Pinterest search results.

The Pinterest search box within the "Follow Boards" feature uses the exact same algorithm as the search box on the top left hand corner of the desktop version of Pinterest. Find out 3 ways to help optimize your boards for search on Pinterest.

3 Ways to Search Optimize your boards for Pinterest search results.

3 Tips to Search Optimize Your Boards

Use Keywords in Your Board’s Name

If you want your board to be found in search results, then it’s best to name them after search terms that people are searching for on Pinterest. If you’re specializing in Linkedin and you want people to search for your board, you probably don’t want to call it, “Linkedin Awesomeness!” Sounds really catchy, BUT, nobody is probably going to search for that term.

What you want to do is name your board a common search term such as, “Linkedin Marketing Strategies.” This is the name of one of the boards that Canada’s #1 Linkedin expert, Melonie Deodaro, has titled, and not surprisingly it ranks number one in Pinterest search results for that keyword for boards.

Notice how Melonie Deodaro names her Pinterest board after a keyword. This was one of the factors that has helped her board rank high for that search result. Find out two other factors that influence Pinterest board search optimization.

It’s always best to name your board after the exact search term you want to be found for, but you can also use broad search terms (terms that have the keywords in them, but don’t match exactly) in your board titles and this can help with the ranking.

If you look at the example with the keyword, Pinterest tutorial in the picture that was used early on, you’ll see that Naturally Curly has their board ranked in the third position, and that’s because the name of their board is Naturally Curly Pinterest Tutorial. They used the keyword in their board’s name.

For Naturally Curly to rank quite high for such a keyword, even though it was not the exact keyword is because of two other factors.

The Number of Followers Matter

The number of followers that a board has matters in the way that a board is ranked search results for specific search terms. The board may not have a lot of pins, like in the case of Naturally Curly, for the search term Pinterest tutorial, but the sheer number of followers the board has makes up for it, with over 4000 followers for that board.

The reasoning behind this is because if Pinterest sees that you have a lot of followers for that board, that it must be a relevant board for that search term, or else if the board wasn’t relevant to people then they wouldn’t have so many followers.

Ensure you have some amazing visual content on your boards, so that you’re able to increase your followers for them.

The Number of Pins Helps in Rankings

The number of pins for each board will also help it rank higher for search terms. As the number of pins increase, as well as your follower count, then you should see a rise in the rankings for those boards for that keyword.

This is why for your Pinterest marketing strategy you should focus on a limited number of boards to start. Don’t go crazy trying to create boards that have NO RELEVANCE to your customers or audience.

If I’m following Marvel Comics on Pinterest, I don’t want to see pins about recipes or foods. I want to see pins that are geared towards the comic geek in me.

Now these are most likely not the only factors involved. So even if you have the most followers, have the exact keyword for your board’s name, and have the most pins, that doesn’t mean that you’ll be ranked number one. I do promise it will help you rank higher over time.

Other potential factors

Make Sure You Follow Users

This is all speculation, and based on my observation but I believe that the number of people you follow will also play a small role. I noticed that a blog about Vancouver has a board titled, “Vancouver”, it has 1200 pins, much more than the other Pinterest boards with the same board name but ranks very low in search results. The account has followers but the user doesn’t follow any user. This lack of following others may be a signal that this user is not engaged with Pinterest or is a spammer. A signal to downgrade their search results.

Group Boards that Have Too Many Members

Group boards with large number of contributors will most likely not show up for search results for boards. There have been a few group boards that have shown up in results, but compared to boards created by individuals it’s a very small number. If you’re looking to get your board ranked for a certain search term, you’re much better off trying to do it as an individual than through a group board.

Do you have any tips or tricks to search optimize boards in Pinterest, I would love to hear about them in the comments.

Pinterest is Doing What Google Can’t Do For Search

This post was originally published on MCNG Marketing’s Medium account.

How Pinterest is becoming a leading search engine on its own, and slowly doing what Google couldn't do in the world of search.

How Pinterest is Becoming a Leading Search Engine

There’s a bit of a quiet revolution going on in the world of search, and I don’t think Google is blind to it. However, I do think that many social media marketers and SEOs may be blind to the search revolution that’s happening.

Pinterest is slowly becoming, nay, already is, a search engine, and that may be it’s primary function in the near future. More and more people are going to Pinterest first to search for keywords, and then heading to Google. Especially female users of Pinterest, who adore Pinterest as their primary social network.

In my opinion, Google has been doing a better job over the years of showing websites related to the intent of a search. What’s lacking though is that it has never truly been strong at giving results to people that assist them in the quality of their daily lives, nor providing actionable inspiration.

People are still shocked when I tell them that Google has something called Recipe View to assist searchers with discovering recipes and creating recipes. Sadly, the reaction is a slight “Oh that’s interesting,” then followed by “I’m probably not going to use it.”

Pinterest has been strong in this regard, that it’s a search engine that can drum up excitement when results are shown. Their search engine is about helping people find new ways of creating a life, whether it’s putting you in a day dream state to go travel, or it’s just small craft you want to try to make.

A good example of this is the following. Type in the words, “garage organizer,” into Google. You’re going to get results with a bunch of products that will help you organize your garage. But it doesn’t give you a strong visual idea of how to get this done.

When I searched for those words on Google, the first three results were from Costco and Home Depot. This would be great if I was looking for products, but my intent was to look more for a how to organize a garage resource.

How Google's search engine shows text and product information results, while Pinterest shows lifestyle results.

But Pinterest…oohhh meee…oh myyy…it’s like a visual orgasm of what an organized garage can look like with pictures that would even make Martha Stewart blush. From that point on users of Pinterest can select which pin they would like to click on to get more information, or to get ideas of how to organize their garage within a few seconds.

This is an example of a Pinterest search that shows lifestyle and inspiration results.

Pinterest is presenting a catalog of potential blog posts and resources about how to organize a garage.

Recipes, DIY, and Activities

I honestly can’t think of a better place to go where I can find recipes that show the final product, DIY hairstyles, and activities I can do with my niece, and do so rather efficiently, all in organized and visual manner.

While text based searches are great, and have their relevance, they seem a little underwhelming to the senses. The majority of us would rather have a picture that is worth a thousand words that we can process easily within a few seconds, then to process a thousand words and take minutes to process the same idea.

This is why I think Pinterest poses a serious threat to Google in many ways. It provides a lot of digestible information, in a very fast manner. It is the search engine for lifestyle seekers, and a big reason why it should be part of any retail or hospitality business’ social media strategy.

With over 70 million users contributing visual content, the amount of resources available to be searched on Pinterest is just going to get bigger.

Will Google ever be able to do what Pinterest does for search? In my honest opinion, probably not.

Can you Really do Social Media an Hour a Day?

Can you really do social media one hour a day? Not if you want to do  a good job. Find out why it takes longer than an hour and how good social media takes a lot of time.

Excellent Social Media Takes More Than an Hour a Day

Last month, Dendrite Park, a marketing agency, came out with an interesting instructographic that advised how small business owners could do social media marketing an hour a day. While the article does give credit that small business owners are busy, I think it gives the false impression that a good job for social media marketing can be done an hour a day, which in my honest opinion it can’t.

Here’s the harsh reality in the world of marketing, advertising and social media, most of the time is not spent on executing social media, most of the time is spent on researching and planning out an excellent marketing strategy.

When starting any social media plan, you want to make sure that you have a solid strategy behind it.

You want to know who your target audience is and what type of social media networks they are on. This may incorporate only a limited amount of social networks such as Tumblr and Pinterest, or this may include all the social networks.

But excellent social media planning, whether it’s for one network or for five should not be rushed.

An Hour a Day Works…If You Don’t Care What You Post

If you feel that sending out any old status, tweet, or pin will do, and that somehow it will gain you a community of loyal followers, then you might as well not be on social media.

Part of being on social media is to be able to provide valuable content and insight to your audience.

This week I was really blessed, Mari Smith, a Facebook guru, shared my guest blog post from Oh So Pinteresting on her Facebook page, and it resulted in the post going viral with over 400+ shares within 48 hours, and a big part of that was because of Andrea Vahl who shared that with Mari.

My article about pinning Facebook onto Pinterest went viral, big thanks to Mari Smith, and Andrea Vahl. The post was socially shared over 350 time.

But finding such great content requires time and effort. It means reading other blogs about your industry, and keeping up with the ever changing world of what’s going on. And the people who keep on top of their industry are the ones that will be able to provide fresh content that is relevant to their social media community.

Relationships on Social Media Take Time to Build

For most of my clients that I have worked with, only one of them has ever had a previous relationship with another social media agency. Almost all my clients I work or have worked with were personally managing social media accounts.

One of the biggest hurdles that small businesses face on social media, is the lack of time to authentically connect with their customers on social media. And for any business that starts using social media, whether it’s Pinterest for business purposes, or Linkedin for lead generation, you have to spend time building those relationship.

It’s no different than a customer walking into a hotel the first time. If you take time to engage in conversation, care about their trip and try to make their stay as enjoyable as possible, then chances he’s going to be coming back.

You have to spend time to create a list of people you want to connect with who you may be able to do business or form strategic alliances with. And what you’ll find is that some of them will become good friends of yours too because you both share the same passions.

If you’re a local business, you need to spend more than 5 minutes a day checking messages. You have to engage, and if you don’t have time to do that, then it’s best to hire an agency, or freelancer that can.

This is why it’s vitally important to choose the right social networks for your business instead of going after all of them. Focus o the ones that allow you to create relationships with your customers on deeper level.

Social media hasn’t changed the way we do relationships, as a matter of fact it reminds us that little small acts of connection, taking an interest in what people are saying, and providing great resources for them is more vital today than ever. Why? Because everybody is doing it, and if you don’t do it, your business will die off.

Scheduling and Curating Content Takes Time

Almost everybody I know that has made it big on Twitter has scheduled tweets. Very few do real time interactions all the time, and that’s understandable. The world is a 24/7 place.

And even scheduling tweets to reach those people can take an hour a day. Imagine scheduling for tweets a day (again it should be something valuable to your followers) and then you need to schedule some status updates on Facebook, and then jump over to Pinterest to schedule some pins for the next week.

Scheduling can take a lot of time, but what’s even more important is be able to select the relevant information for your followers.

Some great tools to help with social media scheduling is Hootsuite for Linkedin, Twitter, and Facebook. If you’re looking to schedule pins, Hello Society is a wonderful tool that’s free to use. My friends from the U.S. adore Buffer as a scheduling tool for Facebook and Twitter.

Quality Blogs Take Time and are Worth the Effort

Blogging itself is a huge time consumer, and on my good days I can crank out a draft out within 45 minutes. That’s just a draft. The final copy, including getting the right photos that are pinnable and making sure that it’s done. By the time it’s all said and done, a good quality post that has a great headline, great content, and a pinnable image will take anywhere between 2.5-5 hours to finish. But when it’s all said and done, it can help drive so much traffic and establish your business as THE business in your industry.

Other blogs may report that they finish earlier, and that’s because they don’t understand how powerful Pinterest is in driving blog traffic and tend to use any stock photo, I strongly advise against that.

Always take time to create a blog, and blog at least once a week.

Properly Integrating Social Media Networks into Your Marketing Campaign Takes Time

No social network should ever work alone. This is why it’s important to plan out how to cross promote your different social mediums to get people to not only to be a Facebook fan, but also an Instagram fan, and so forth. The more places that you’re able to communicate with your customers, the more that they’re going to remember you. It’s that simple.

Even though I love Pinterest, I make sure I share some wonderful articles on my Google Plus group on Pinterest marketing. This way it helps to reach out to another community of potential leads and influencers.

And if you’re able to create engaging and amazing content, that’s consistent with your brand and strategy, across your social media then all the better.

Measuring and Taking Action with Your Analytics

It’s very important to spend your time understanding how social media affects your marketing and sales goals. Taking the time to analyze what’s going on with your social media traffic, and understanding what type of content is being shared is vital in deciding what type of action or content to provide next.

Analytics alone can take up to an hour a day depending on how much data is coming in, and what you’re measuring. Tools such as Google Analytics can tell you which social networks are driving the most traffic, while Pinterest analytic programs like PinLeague can tell you what pins are pinned the most as well as who your influential followers are.

Pinleague

I’m not here to tell you how much time you should spend on social media, but I will tell you that if you want to make your social media campaigns work, then you need to work very hard at the start, and you need to invest time into your online social relationships, and I guarantee you, if you want to do this right, it will take more than an hour a day.

Photo courtesy of Bill Erickson.

Pillar One of Pintalysis: Create a Kick Ass Pinterest Strategy (2 of 2)

Executing the First Pillar of Pintalysis

Find out how to supercharge your Pinterest Marketing using Pintalysis. This first pillar discusses about business strategy and how to measure the success.

Welcome back, I hope you enjoyed the first blog post about the first pillar of Pintalysis, where I discussed about business goals, knowing your target audience’s persona and being aware of how they interact with Pinterest on a daily basis.

With the first part establishing being about you’re trying to accomplish, the second part discusses how to execute the first pillar of the Pintalysis marketing blueprint.

I’ve mentioned several times in previous blog posts about the single biggest Pinterest mistake businesses make, which is creating too many random boards for what’s hot, but not good for business. Strategically what you want to do is create a Pinterest account that’s aligned with what your business goals and your target audience.

Here’s what a little planning and business strategy can do for your site.

Now let’s talk about executing the first pillar.

Deciding What Boards to Use for Your Pinterest Business Strategy

Now that you’ve clarified your business and marketing goals. Here comes the fun part with the Pinterest marketing strategy for the creative types on your team.

Before you finalize any types of boards, write down all the types of boards you believe your audience would be interested in. Go nuts and think of anything, just let your creative mind flow. (This is how good print advertising is often done.)

Seriously go nuts, write down as many as you want. Now that you’ve executed this fun part, look over your list. How many of those boards are truly relevant to your target audience. Scratch off the ones that don’t work.

Which Pinterest Boards Will Help You Achieve Your Primary Business Goals?

The next step is then to ask yourself what types of boards will meet the business goals set out for your organization. Circle those and keep them in mind.

If you’re not in a complete rush, I would highly suggest that you actually leave that list alone for now and come back the next day to see if they still make sense for your Pinterest goals and strategy.

Narrow down the boards. Now if you had to choose three boards as the ones to prioritize and help you drive your business goals, which ones would they be? Really ask yourself WHY are these boards the most important?

What’s interesting about Pinterest accounts is that often you’ll find well known boards such as Bike EXIF or Yahoo! Sports who have one dominant board that accounts for an overwhelming majority of followers.

Get good with a few boards first as this will help you focus and not go nuts trying to populate 40 different boards at once, which will become a big headache and time waster.

Choose Secondary Boards that Will Help Assist in Your Business Goals or Brand Building

Now choose your secondary boards that will help with secondary business goals such as increasing brand awareness and web traffic.

I would encourage any business not to set up more than 15 boards to start. These boards, may include behind the scenes of how your product is made, testimonials from customers, or highlighting some of your favourite customer photos.

Visualize the Boards with Post-it Notes

Once you’ve finalized all the boards. Grab a set of Post-it ntoes and look for some space to post them on. Imagine what your boards would look like on a desktop , tablet and mobile so that you fully understand how your boards will look to your target audience.

This will help you understand how a user experiences the social media networks are different channels.

Once you’ve done that and have organized you boards, now you can begin to go to the next level of fun and choose some of the best pictures from your website to pin to certain boards as you will have a much more solid idea of what type of pins to pin.

Choose Pins that are Relevant to Your Target Audience

Remember that the pins you post should relate to your target audience in some way, whether it’s to entertain them, add valuable information to their life, like a DIY project, but your least goal should be to get your target audience to start developing an emotional relationship with your brand.

This is especially important for brands and e-commerce sites that are looking to build up their brand and make it go big. There’s been no other social media network that has been allowed to do in the history of the Internet.

Sephora is probably one of the BEST self contained (they don’t join nor create community boards) companies on Pinterest, hands down. They may not have millions of followers, but when you click on their pins and see that many of their pins have been repinned over 100 + times on a regular basis, you know they’re doing something right.

Sephora changes the format of their boards from time to time as well. They know that travel season is about to burst, so they highlight a board that’s about cosmetics for travel. When it was around Mother’s Day, they highlighted their Mother’s Day board to the top of the page.

Sephora does an amazing job on Pinterest with relevant boards and pins for their targetted audience.

It can be very hard to know what works. This is why it’s important to keep track of what pins are successfully helping you accomplish your goals. I’ll be talking about metrics later in this post.

Keep an Eye Out for Your Competitor’s Pinterest Pages

You’re probably having a wonderful time deciding what types of pins to place onto your boards, but there’s still more to it then going at it free for all. You need to study your competition and see what they’re up to.

This is one of the most crucial elements for your Pintalysis business strategy. You want to see what type of content is doing well for them and what doesn’t seem to go well (which boards aren’t getting repins).

If you find that they’re getting tremendous amounts of repins for certain types of pins, try to find out why they are so successful, and take elements from it without exactly copying them. You’ll also be able to find out ideas that they use to generate more sales that would fit perfectly into your business model.

Keep an eye out for them on a monthly basis so that you’re not copying the same Pinterest marketing strategy that they are.

Measuring the Success of Your Campaigns

Avinash Kaushik is my analytics hero in so many ways, and his passion for finding analytics that lead to outcomes is what inspires me. Your business needs to focus on outcomes.

I’m not an analytics ninja or guru, but there is no doubt that no Pinterest marketing and business strategy would be complete without knowing what you need to measure for success.

Every business will have different metrics and KPI’s, so it’s important to consult with your analytics team to find out what metrics are best suited for your business. The following is just a guideline.

If you’ve done your proper planning with Pintalysis then you should have a good idea of your business goals and your KPIs. From there it’s time to find out what should be measured.

In the world of analytics, you can be swamped again with too much data, without using that data to apply actions and determining the outcomes. Remember to measure outcomes and only select a few that will allow you to make improvements to your overall strategy.

The rest of the blog focuses a lot on analytics and is meant for people who have an intermediate understanding of analytic tools like Google Analytics.

Metrics and Outcomes for an E-commerce Site

For an e-commerce site you’ll be looking at the number of sales that were referred to you by Pinterest.
After all, the ultimate outcome for an e-commerce site is to drive sales, not necessarily just traffic.

1) Find out how often Pinterest plays a role in the purchasing path as a medium. If a lot of people are clicking on your pins, and you notice that conversions of goals are higher for Pinterest compared to other sources and mediums, then you can safely assume that it’s vital in the purchase path.

2) Find out how much the average customer spending is compared to other mediums. Some e-commerce sites, like Bottica.com have found that users on Pinterest spend more than their Facebook counterparts. Knowing if Pinterest is doing the same for you business can mean a HUGE difference to your bottom line, and a strong refocus to ramp up efforts on Pinterest marketing.

Bottica Infographic of Pinterest versus Facebook
3) Find out which pins specifically are driving sales traffic. If you use Google Analytics you can use the Full Referrer feature and narrow it down to Pinterest.com and know exactly which pins are helping convert the goals.

What may surprise you is that it’s not a pin from your own board that’s driving sales, you may find out it’s a pin from an influencer that did. If that user is helping you out get sales, you may want to reach out to them and send them a nice gift as a thank you. (This is the power of social media combined with the use of analytics).

4) If you haven’t verified your website yet with Pinterest, I highly suggest you do.

This is because you want to be able to use their analytics tool (which is free) to measure what actually is being pinned directly from your site. And on top of that, find out which pins are being repinned the most and providing a level of engagement. What’s also amazing about this is that you can see if the pins that get repinned the most have any correlation to the ones that are driving sales.

Remember, just because a pin is getting repinned a lot doesn’t mean it’s the right type of engagement.

Metrics and Outcomes for Lead Generation

1) If your business goal is to generate leads then your most important metric is the number of people who have signed up for you e-mail list through Pinterest.

2) The second important metric is to find out how many people clicked on your pin that led to your e-mail sign up. Knowing this metric is extremely helpful because it will tell you if the pins you are creating are getting enough interest for people to click on them in the first place. If you notice that nobody is clicking on them at all, then there may be some problems with the visual optimization of the pins, or the lack of virality with your community.

However, if people are clicking on them, but aren’t signing up, then there’s issues that need to be fixed with the landing page for the e-mail sign up.

3) Find out which pins are leading to more sign ups. Nobody said you can’t do A/B split testing with pins. A misconception is that you need to use a picture that’s on the website as the the actual pin. You actually don’t.

As long as you’ve uploaded your photos onto Pinterest you can choose the URL that the pin needs to redirect to. If you get more clicks for one pin compared to the other…booyah you’ve found a winning pin.

Here’s a trick that Sephora used to get more clicks. On the left hand side is the pin, and on the right hand side is the actual image once the pin has been clicked on.

Notice how Sephora optimizes their Pinterest photos, but it redirects to to their site image after. This is a smart Pinterest marketing technique.

Metrics and Outcomes for Brand Awareness and Engagement

1) Find out which pins are driving high levels of engagement by looking at the number of repins for those pins and find out why this may be the case. But don’t mistaken repins as a solid measurement because it still needs to be in context with your business goals.

For example, one of the most pinned images I have on one of my boards is a beautiful vacation spot. It has been repinned directly from my board 101 times and liked 20 times. That might sound good, but when I started that board I suffered from the “Go with what’s popular syndrome.” And I’ll be deleting that board within a week after doing some auditing on my own strategy. Vacations have very little to do with my digital marketing company or MCNG’s brand.

What you want to be able to do is use analytics tools like Pinleague to examine what content on specific boards are being repinned and notice if there are any common patterns or themes that reappear within those pins.

Pinleague can also tell you engagement levels, such as the number of repins per pin per follower. So if you get a high engagement level, then the content on your particular board is engaging and viral. Low levels of engagement indicate that the board is not worth sharing with others.

Other analytic programs like Curlate and Piquora can provide helpful assistance for this area.

Pinleague has a 14 day free trial, and I highly encourage you to sign up for an account to see what their different analytics are like. Piquora and Curalate are focused on enterprise level management.

2) How many people are visiting your site because of Pinterest? You want to be able to know if people are willing to click on your pins to visit the site. This will determine whether someone was truly interested in your visual content.

From that point on you can also discover the bounce rate, pages they visit, and time spent to truly understand if the pins are meeting the intent of the clicker.

The number of new visitors will probably be a good metric for brands that are looking to increase awareness of their site. This can be especially helpful for bloggers.

3) Measure the number of followers for your branded boards. The number of followers can be very tricky to measure and often misleading in terms of total followers and here’s why.

The number of followers that a person has on Pinterest doesn’t mean that that person has that many people following all their boards, that’s the number of people who have followed at least one board. They could have followed one, two, or five. So this isn’t a perfect metric to use.

If we used the above method and metric, community boards, indirectly, add followers to your account as well. But Pinterest can’t tell you if there’s an overlap of followers.

Here’s what I mean. At this moment it’s reported that I have 560 followers for MCNG’s Pinterest account. In reality, I also have an additional 3945 followers for the community board “Words of Wisdom” because that’s how many people follow that board, I have an additional 691 followers for the Digital Marketing blogs, and I have another 1727 followers for the Creative Ads board. So I have approximately close to 7000 followers.

Here’s the rub with community boards, if someone follows a community board through your Pinterest account, it doesn’t register as your follower, it registers the follower for the creator of that account. This leads to some inaccuracy regarding the number of followers that you have.

With some margin of error (because some of the followers may actually overlap with your boards) your total follower count should actually include the community boards, because the moment you post something on those community boards, you’re exposed your pin to that many more followers.
This is not a perfect calculation and should be taken with a grain of salt. You should include your followers, and the followers of different community boards.

In my opinion, the better way to go is to count the number of followers that you have for each niche board that matters to your brand engagement, because I know that a vacation board doesn’t help drive the targetted followers that I’m looking for. But my board on Pinterest Tips, Social Media Marketing, and MCNG Marketing blog posts, those follower counts do interest me, because these are brand building boards.

I know that’s a lot to take in, but I want your businesses to use Pinterest the right way from the very start. Pillar 2 of 5 of Pintalysis will be discussing visually optimizing your boards and your pins for engagement.

If you don’t want to miss out on this information, then sign up for our e-mail below. And feel free to leave a comment about the post.

Pillar One of Pintalysis : Create a Kick Ass Pinterest Strategy (1 of 2)

Pintalysis, The Ultimate Marketing Blueprint for Marketing

Start Your Pinterest Marketing Off Right with Pintalysis

With any social network, there are fundamental elements that don’t change and have become part of the Internet marketing world. In this blog post I’ll be going more indepth into the first of the five pillars of the Pintalysis Marketing Blueprint, which is determining your marketing and business goals. Now let’s dive into the world of Pinterest and Pintalysis.

Pillar One of Pintalysis: What’s Your Business Goals with Pinterest?

It’s very easy to get caught up in a hot social media network like Pinterest without actually doing any planning. The Pintalysis Marketing Blueprint focuses on creating a solid business goal and strategy as the very first step. If you’ve worked as an entrepreneur then you’ve realized that the “no planning” method isn’t the best method to use. With Pinterest, I’ve discovered that businesses use Pinterest for three primary goals, these goals may not be independent of each other, and often work hand in hand.

1) Pinterest can be Used to Increase E-commerce and Brick and Mortar Sales

Two examples of E-commerce sites that have adopted this particular business goal have used Pinterest to increase sales are Sephora and Etsy. Sephora focuses on cosmectics and Etsy.com is a website that focuses on selling arts and crafts. Sephora has reported that Pinterest users spend 15X more than their Facebook users.

Did you know that Pinterest referrals spent 15X more than their Facebook referrals for Sephora? That's the power of Pinterest for e-commerce.

Etsy added a Pin It button to all their different items, and has reported sales massively increasing. As an example, Rachel Ball of Elepantine who uses Pinterest and Etsy reported that sales increased by 20% after analyzing patterns of pins, repins and likes to focus more creating pins that consumers were more likely to buy and have interest in.

2)Pinterest can be Used For Lead Generation

If you’re wondering if Pinterest is the right type of business for lead generation, I can tell you that Hubspot, a leading inbound marketing software company has been using the social median network to help generate more leads and visitors to their blog.

They get more referral traffic from Pinterest than they do from Google Plus for their blog. During a two week period back in February 2012, they noticed that close to 700 links were generated by Pinterest (unfortunately these links are no follow) but from a small sample of visitors taken they were able to find that about 6.4% of visitors converted to leads.

Here’s another interesting case study with Petplan Insurance. One of their major goals was to “Attract new audiences through compelling and relevant content.” Not only did they use Pinterest to attract new crowds they reported that requests for insurance quotes rose up by 12.5%, and they hit a home run with new visitor to their website rose by 87%.

3)Pinterest can be Used for Customer Engagement and Brand Awareness

If your business goals aren’t about getting more prospects and direct sales, then you’re more likely interested in taking more of a “public relations” stand point with your Pinterest marketing.

You are using Pinterest because it offers a great space to advertise what you do and to increase brand awareness. As a marketing company, I use it to drive traffic to my blog and to use it further to establish myself as a knowledgeable person about Pinterest.

Yahoo Sports which has over 1.3 million followers (mostly for their Sports News and Update board) which isn’t in the business of generating revenue but driving traffic. It’s not uncommon to see many of their pins repinned 40+ times, some of them reaching up to 100 +. So if you thought that Pinterest was just for women, you need to think again.

Yahoo! Sports has over 1.3 million followers on their Pinterest page. Pinterest is no longer just for women. Find out how to maximize your exposure on Pinterest with #Pintalysis.

Here's an example of a great business to business pin from General Electric. This is engaging content that anybody can appreciate. General Electric is a good example of this as well. It takes the time to create entertaining content. One of my favourites is they “Hey Girl…” spoofs that star Thomas Edison. Chances are I’m not going to buy one of their heavy machineries, but there’s no doubt that it has increased my awareness and purchase intent when I decide to go buy a washer and dryer now.

Who Are You Trying To Attract Using Pinterest?

The next consideration with the Pintalysis model is to know who you want to attract as followers and brand ambassadors. It’s easy to inflate followers by creating boards that are of no interest to your target audience. Big woop if you have ten thousand followers following your recipe board. If you’re a banking institution, you probably don’t want to go there.

But as a bank, I’m probably going to display pins on how to save money, or inform customers on how to plan for their retirement. Canada’s largest credit, Vancity Credit Union, isn’t on Pinterest, which is a total shame. They do a lot to contribute to local community projects, and create highly visual content on their website that can grab a person’s attention.

They hold a variety of events that are of interest to the target audience they serve, and should create pins that attract customers that focus on sustainability and wanting to invest wisely. They know who their target audience is, and there are many pinners who also believe in their social and community values.

It’s important to think like your target audience. How would a pin that’s being posted relate to business goals? Why would a pin be of particular interest to click on for your target audience?

If you’re able to incorporate popular topics like fashion, food, and do it yourself projects into your pins that makes sense to your target audience, that’s great. TOM’s Shoes is an excellent example of this. Weddings are popular subject on Pinterest, and so their business has a dedicated Pinterest board for pictures that show their shoes being worn on wedding days.

But don’t do it just for the sake of gaining more followers. When you create great niche Pinterest boards, and you continuously post and engage with others that are similar in thought on Pinterest, you will attract more of your targeted audience.

Also try to find out what the travel path of what your target audience is like, and when they are most likely to use Pinterest. For many fashionistas, Saturdays are a good day to pin as this is often their down time, and can increase their purchase intent. Find out whether your audience is more inclined to use tablets, smartphones or desktops when searching on Pinterest.

More About Pintalysis To Come

I will be discussing more what boards to choose and what pins to share, why Pinterest is amazing for competitive analysis, and how to measure your business goals for Pinterest. Come back to our blog to read about the second part of the first pillar of Pintalysis.

Why Businesses Need to use Rich Pins for Pinterest Immediately

Nordstroms Pinterest Pinterest has recently been working with some companies that provide online e-commerce sales. What’s fantastic about this is that it provides information about the product without actually requiring them to be typed into the description and therefore you never have to worry about another pinner changing the description without listing the vital information (a concern for major brands).

This availability of information is vital and is known as rich pins (most likely taken from the term rich snippets, a common term used when marketers talk about search engine optimization.)

Pinterest has allowed for three different categories of rich pins, and they are, movies, recipes, and products, and will definitely be a great add on to the Pintalysis, a Pinterest marketing blueprint for businesses.

Rich Pins for Products Will Change E-commerce

Probably the one that will interest most readers is the rich pins for product because it affects many e-commerce sites. Rich pins has already been used on Pinterest pages like Sephora and Etsy’s.

Rich pins will be able to tell a viewer on Pinterest real time pricing, whether it’s available in stock, and which website to buy it from (or that it’s available in stores). The other nice feature is that a businesses logo is now added to the side. But you do have to apply to Pinterest to be able to offer rich pins for your account, so whether you run a store that’s dedicated to shoes like Zappos, or run an online store dedicated to aprons, rich pins are vital.

No More Price Tags in the Top Right Corner

Another change for pins is that pricing used to be tagged automatically on the top right hand side of a pin when a dollar amount was listed in the description. This is no longer the case. A user can still post pricing in the description but no more price tags will show. In the case of rich pins, the pricing will show at the bottom of the pin at the left hand side, but only after the product pin has been clicked on.

Why this is of particular help to businesses is because it used to be difficult to provide all that data in the description of the pin without worrying that the information would change after being repinned a few dozen times.

Now if an item is listed as out of stock, then users will most likely know not to click on it, because there’s the potential that it’s going to lead to a broken link, but at least the user has been “warned” in some fashion so it doesn’t disrupt the user’s expectation.

Since this rich pin data can’t be changed by users, that means that when any Pinterest user pins from a Pinterest approved e-commerce site, that specific rich pin data can only be changed by webmasters or developers.

The problem for businesses before was that when pins were taken off a site or repinned their descriptions could be changed, and tampered with. So people could purposely put the wrong price if they wanted to in the description and then go to the site, and realize that it was much more expensive. Now with rich pins, a user can trust that the price listed is most likely the right price.

Another great feature is that it also allows users to know that this pin is officially from the site, and that it doesn’t lead to copycat retailer that’s making fakes of a brand. If you haven’t verified your e-commerce or business site on Pinterest yet, then I highly suggest that you do.

The good news is that when you do put a price for your product in the description of the pin, it will still automatically go into the Gifts section of the Pinterest search.

If you want to implement rich pins, then scroll down to near the end of the article.

Rich Pins are Available for Movies

Rich pins are also available for movies, and is able to offer details such as the appropriate viewing age for the movie, as well as information such as who the director is, and who is starring in it, and rating for the movie. For Netflix’s Pinterest account it gives you some great details before you click to visit their site.

Now Pinterest allows Rich Pins for movies. This is an example of one used by <a href=Netflix. It has information about the director, actor, as well as the rating for the movie by users that have seen the movie.

Recipe Pins Will Do Wonders for Food Brands and Bloggers

With a little creativity, you can get your food brand to be on Pinterest as well. Here’s an example of a recipe for oven fried chicken from Chobani (a yogurt company.) As you can see the rich pin for recipes offers a lot of great information that ranges from how many people it serves, what type of ingredients you need, and how long it takes to cook.

What’s really smart about this for food brands is that rich pins don’t tell you step by step on how to cook the food, so viewers that are interested in executing the recipe have to click on the pin, which will lead back to the main website.

Looking to add your recipes to Pinterest and create rich pins. Click on the pin to find out how to do this.

How To Implement Rich Pins for Your Site

Most of Pinterest has been fairly non technical I would say, and now with the options of rich pins, you’re most likely going to need your developer to help you out if you’re not technically savvy.

I want to make it clear that I’m personally not a developer, so I won’t be able to offer technical advice. They are scraping data from sites that use oEmbed, Shchema.org tags, as well as Open Graph tags.

But if you would like to get all the details of how to implement the technical work, Pinterest has a post dedicated to developers regarding rich pins. And you still need to go through the approval process with Pinterest before you can do what the other brands like Nordstroms and Sephora have done. Pinterest has provided a rich pin tester to test out your code to see if it works.

Also if you find yourself wanting to listen about the changes that have recently happened, Cynthia Sanchez from Oh So Pinteresting, created a podcast about the changes.

Pintalysis: The Ultimate Marketing Blueprint for Pinterest Marketing

Pintalysis, The Ultimate Marketing Blueprint for Marketing After browsing through a few different brands on Pinterest I’ve noticed that many of them are making some basic mistakes on Pinterest.

This is why I came up with the Pintalysis Marketing Blueprint, a framework that helps guide marketers on what to consider and how to use Pinterest to maximize their brand exposure, and monetization.

The Pintalysis Marketing Blueprint consists of five different pillars for a comprehensive Pinterest marketing and business strategy. This blog article offers an introduction to Pintalysis.

All five pillars work together in harmony to provide an integrated approach to marketing. The first four pillars are listed in priority order, with the fifth pillar focusing on website development.

The First Pillar of Pintalysis: Business and Marketing Goals

Before jumping into Pinterest, a business needs to be clear about the types of business and marketing objectives they would like to achieve. This will depend on the nature of the business. For an e-commerce site it will be about driving traffic to the site and converting them into being online customers.

For a service business, a great business and marketing objective is to drive more web visitors to the website, and generate leads from Pinterest.

For business to business, the marketing goal may be to increase the brand’s awareness among the target demographic. General Electric does an amazing job of using their Pinterest board to bring awareness to their company with hilarious content, like the “Hey Girl” board featuring Thomas Edison.

These different types of goals will require metrics. If you are a large enterprise, analytic tools such as Curalate and Piquora are able to help track metrics such as repins, the most popular pins from your website, and so forth. Other tools such as Pinterest’s very own analytics tool can tell you who has been pinning and give you an idea of how many users are pinning from your site. While Google Analytics will offer insight into how long people are staying on the directed site that came from Pinterest.

The Second Pillar of Pintalysis: Visually Optimizing Your Pins

The second pillar of the Pintalysis is to ensure visual optimization of your pins. This means choosing images that are absolutely eye catching that will make people stop and take a look. Remember that your pins are competing with dozens of others every given second.

Ensure your pins are from 300-540 pixels wide, and no longer than 1900 pixels. Recently Pinterest added a “Expand Pin” at the bottom of pins that are longer than that, and that “Expand Pin” happens on both desktops and mobile.

When appropriate consider adding captioning in the picture to draw people in. This is your chance to be a print advertising specialist. Create big fonts that clearly state what the pin is about when clicked on such as, “Top Ten Ways to Protect Leather Shoes.” Sephora recently created a Mother’s Day board in which pins highlight gifts that are excellent to give away. As you can tell they created some text at the bottom of the pin to grab your attention.

Notice in the picture below – on the left Sephora uses an intriguing and customized pin to promote an item on their Mother’s Day board. On the right hand side is a picture of the actual product after the pin has been clicked on. This can be done by uploading your customized image and then selecting the specific url you want the pin to redirect to.

Notice how Sephora optimizes their Pinterest photos, but it redirects to to their site image after. This is a smart Pinterest marketing technique.

The Third Pillar of Pintalysis: Create Virality through Community

Creating virality takes work, especially for brands that are just starting off. But virality begins by increasing the number of followers. After all, you can have a great pin, but if nobody sees it, then nobody is going to share it. Virality can also be increased by participating in community boards on Pinterst.

Virality is about developing relationships with influencers in your industry. When you’re able to create relationships with those in your industry, consider a way of working with each other to cross promote each other’s pins. This is the same concept of guest blogging. If you’ve developed a really great relationship with an influencer consider creating a board together to make the most of each other’s followers.

Social sharing is one of the aspects of going viral. Ensure that you are letting your followers know about your Pinterest account. Share with your followers the most repinned content from Pinterest on Twitter. Have a Facebook tab/app for Pinterest on your Facebook page, Woobox offers one for free. Share your best pins from Pinterest onto Instagram. Ensure that you have a “Follow Us on Pinterest” button on your website.

The Fourth Pillar: Search Optimization

When I discuss about search optimization, I’m not just referring to SEO (Search Engine Optimization) which is very important, but I’m also referring how to optimize pins and boards within Pinterest’s search engine.

For example one of the aspects of getting pins to show up in search is through the use of keywords in the descriptions of pins and in boards. This holds true to for SEO of your Pinterst page. But the domain name that a pin originates from also plays a role in search within Pinterest’s search engine, this is why there are some pins that have no keywords in their description in the pin or board, and yet show up high for search terms in Pinterest.

Ensuring that all your pins, boards, and the page itself is search optimized for both engines will help maximize the online exposure of your page and drive more traffic to your website.

The Fifth Pillar: Optimize Your Pinterest Page for Sharing

The Fifth and last pillar is vitally important for e-commerce sites or sites that require visual content. Ensure that your website has been optimized to allow for Pinterest sharing. This means that your blog has a pin it button so that people can share articles on Pinterest (my biggest pet peeve are social media blogs that talk about Pinterest, and yet they don’t have a Pin It button available).

This also means having wonderful photos that are going to be visually optimized for your website. E-commerce sites are often able to show multiple photos of a product. Bottica.com, the online jewellery site, does an amazing job of showing their products being worn by people. And it goes through a gallery showing their jewellery from different perspectives. This not only increases purchase intent, it also increase the pinning intent.

Bottica does a great job of adding Pin It buttons to all their photos for social sharing. This is a simple Pinterest tactic that all e-commerce sites should focus on.

Traditionally many blogs added photos in a way that was more of a psychological tactic to stand out, but rarely did the photos have any real visual appeal to the reader. Now it’s all changed, the feature image on a blog or any website needs to be Pinterest worthy so that that pin can get repinned again and again. You have to treat the feature photos on blog posts as if you are creating a magazine ad.

Those are the five pillars of Pintalysis. Look back at your own Pinterest marketing strategy and see if there’s anything that’s missing. Sometimes it can be the most simple things such as not SEOing your Pinterest Board descriptions. Over the next few months, I will be sharing more details of the Pintalysis Marketing Blueprint in an upcoming e-book. Please note that Pintalysis is not officially associated with Pinterest.

Pintalysis, the Ultimate Marketing Blueprint for Pinterest Marketing. This Pinterest marketing framework will offer brands and companies a solid guideline on how to maximize their marketing efforts.