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Best Ways to Use Hashtags on Pinterest

Best Ways to Use Hashtags With Pinterest

There are always hot topics about Pinterest that people want to know about. They want to know how to get their pins to show up in Pinterest search results or how to drive more web traffic to their blog. There’s no doubt that one of the most controversial topics that I have come across Pinterest marketing is the use of hashtags.

What is a Hashtag?

Let’s start off with what a hashtag is. A hashtag is simply this -> #. You’ll see these across a variety of different social networks like Twitter, Instagram, Google Plus, and occasionally on Facebook as well. When Pinterest first came out in 2010 there was a lot of confusion about hashtags and how they were being used in Pinterest.

Many marketers assumed that by inserting # in their description that their pins would automatically pop up in search results for Pinterest, similar to the way that Twitter’s search works. But this was not the case, and soon a war on how to effectively use them ensued.

As the years have gone by, more and more brands are starting to use hashtags the smart way. Here are seven tips for using hashtags on Pinterest.

Hashtags Lead to Search Results for that Keyword

When you put a # in your pin’s description it will become bolded in the pin’s description when people are viewing them on the desktop version of Pinterest. This allows people to click on the # which leads to search results for Pins that may or may not contain that hashtag.

Usually the results that are shown are a mish mash of pins that contain the words used in the hashtag. I typed in #GardeningTips onto the desktop version of Pinterest and here were some of the results that were shown.

Hashtags on Pinterest - 7 Tips You Need to Know

Notice that some of the results show #GardeningTips, but other pins contain Gardening tips, some have Gardening-tips, and some of the don’t even have the keywords in them.

Not all Hashtags will be Indexed

Just because you put a hashtag in a pin’s description doesn’t automatically mean that it will show up in search results for that hashtag. Pinterest operates very different from Twitter.

To find out how keywords and hashtags are indexed within Pinterest search results, read my article 4 Tips to Make Your Pins more Searchable on Pinterest.

Hashtags May Lead People Away from Your Pin

A major con of having a hashtag on Pinterest is that it does lead people to search results for the keyword associated with that hashtag. Let’s say that I see your pin about gardening tips, I find the pin has the hashtag #gardeningtips and I click on it.

That click then leads me to search results for that #. And since not all hashtags are indexed, the person that clicked on your hashtag has now been taken away from your pin and now is browsing someone else’s pin.

This can be extremely troublesome when someone has click to enlarge a pin, and is seconds away from clicking on it again to be redirected to your website, only to be intrigued by the hashtag and clicks on it to disappear to a whole new set of results.

Hashtags Are Clickable on Mobile Apps

You may read some older articles about Pinterest that mention how hashtags aren’t clickable on Pinterest apps. But from my understanding in 2015, this all changed.

Hashtags are clickable on iOS and Android devices when a person does a close up of a pin and scroll’s down to the pin description area.

Don’t Overuse Hashtags

You’ll still see this practice occur where there are pins that use dozens of hashtags in their descriptions. While this may be a popular practice on Instagram to get more followers, it can be annoying for users of Pinterest and poor etiquette.

Pinterest has officially come out saying that if you do put too many hashtags in your pin description it could actually demote the pin’s search ranking.  (Thanks to Kelly Lieberman from #PinChat for sharing that article.)

Create a Unique Hashtag For Your Business

If you do want to use a hashtag for your business ensure that it’s a unique one. Try to avoid using common search terms that thousands of other pinners have used. This way when you create you own unique hashtag, and people do click on it, it will lead back to search results that are about your blog posts or products.

To help promote my upcoming book Pinterest to Profits with Pintalysis, I’ll be using the #Pintalysis in pin descriptions that are being used to promote that book since Pintalysis is a unique word.

Don’t Use Hashtags in Board and Account Descriptions

You’ll see some Pinterest boards have hashtags in their pin descriptions. Hashtags in Pinterest board descriptions are not helpful because people rarely search for boards by using hashtags in front of them.

And having them in your board descriptions and are detrimental to Google search results.

Best Ways to Use Hashtags with Pinterest by Vincent Ng of MCGNmarketing.com


Avoid using hashtags in your Pinterest board and account descriptions.

Boards on Pinterest can rank very well on Google, but they have to have keywords that people are searching for with the search engine. When was the last time you decided to type into Google #YourSearchTerm? I would imagine close to never.

Leave out the hashtags in your business name and board names and descriptions to help them rank higher in Google search results for terms you want to be searched for.

As an interesting side note, if you enjoy using Pinterest a lot for your personal use, and there’s a particular board that you enjoy pinning to, then consider putting the # in front of the board name. This might be #Favourite Board. Since Pinterest shows boards to pin to in an alphabetical order, board names that have the # in front of their name generally show up at the top of the list before the rest.

Use a Branded Hashtag with Your Promoted Pins

Advertising on Pinterest is here, and if you’re planning on using Promoted Pins for your business one of the no-no’s of advertising with Pinterest is that they don’t allow more than one hashtag in the pin description.

I’m not suggesting it’s necessary, but I understand that sometimes you want to use a hashtag to have a cohesive social media strategy.

And if you do decide you want to use a hashtag in your pin description it should be branded, no generic hashtags such as #travel or #love. Most likely Pinterest is not going to approve of these pins.

Have you been using hashtags in creative ways with Pinterest? Leave a comment and share with other members of the 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.”

Pinterest Web Analytics for Business is Here

Pinterest Analytics Pinterest released their internal analytics platform for verified business accounts. If you own a website and haven’t verified your Pinterest account, then I highly recommend that you do before more further upgrades are made to the social media network. If there isn’t a checkmark next to your website, then the page hasn’t been verified yet, and it’s vital if you want to use your Pinterest for Marketing.

You can learn how to verify your business account on this Pinterest website.

Once you’ve verified your Pinterest account, you can access the analytics tools provided, but your account must switch over to the new Pinterest system in order to see the analytics menu.

Pinterest New Look

Inside the analytics you’ll be able to see which pins have been repinned the most, as well as the number of clicks that your pins receive. You’re able to get general analytics over a variety of periods, including the default settings of 7 days, 14 days or 30 day period. There is the option to select your own dates of varied length as well.

There are a variety metrics that their tool offer including number of clicks, repins, impressions, reach, pins and pinners. If you need an explanation of the metrics you can hover over the question mark for a detailed explanation.

Pinterest Analytics Example

You can also see which of your pictures on your website have been pinned most recently, as well as the user that pinned them. This makes it much easier to use, compared to the older method of using www.pinterest.com/source/(website, without the wwww.) And it allows you to see patterns of who your regular pinners are from your website.

At the moment, the analytics tool doesn’t measure the success of other pins that your account has repinned, it only tracks pins that have come from your own website. The only third party Pinterest tool I’ve used to keep track of pins so far is Reachli which gives you detailed analytics about how pins that are not from your website are doing.

I have a pin that leads directly to a sales page for my book Help with Yelp for Restaurants. Since this image isn’t hosted on MCNG Marketing, I use Reachli to find out how many people are clicking on the picture. There are other third party apps like Curalate, or Pinfluencer.

I haven’t tried this one out yet myself, but Cynthia Sanchez, of Oh So Pinteresting, recommends using PinLeague as a Pinterest analytical tool.

For good overall understanding of what you can do with the tool you can view Pinterest’s video.

Unfortunately Pinterest won’t allow us to embed their videos, which I think is a bad move since so many bloggers were trying to do it, so please visit their business website to view it.

I believe this is just the start for them, with their extra 200 million dollars in funding, I don’t doubt that Pinterest is looking for ways to please advertisers, businesses, and users of their platform. If you’re still not on the social media platform, I highly encourage you to because it’s popularity will continue to grow, and many users of Pinterest are finding it a much more fun and engaging network than compared to others such as Twitter, Facebook and Google Plus.

Add to add some other great news, MCNG will be hosting our first workshop on how to use Pinterest for your business. The workshop will be held in Vancovuer, B.C. in April, and we’ll be announcing more details in the near future.

5 Pinterest Boards About Marketing to Follow

MCNG Marketing Pinterest Boards

I’m becoming a huge fan of Pinterest. Though the majority of users of the social network are there for fashion, food and fun, it’s also a great marketing tool, not just to advertise on, but to get visual resources that normally would be hard to shift through.

There’s no doubt that there’s a Pinterest revolution going on. I really enjoy spending my time there. It’s a social network that doesn’t invade my privacy, users want their pics and pins to be shared with the worlds, and it’s a great place where curated information can be found.

When you look at the number of women’s magazines and compare that to the number of men’s magazines, you can see why Pinterest has been so successful with women. Pinterest to me is similar to the magazine industry ( minus the written content) because magazines rely on stunning visuals and great headlines in their pictures to get people to pay attention to the magazine.

Pinterest boards are no different. The job of a great Pinterest board is to grab a viewer’s attention and have him click on it to explore more of the pins. And that’s what the following five boards have done, they’ve posted great visuals and provided some great examples of marketing ranging from social media to product packaging. Enjoy the visual feast.

All Creative Community

All Creative Community’s Pinterest is one of my favourite boards to follow, mostly because they are linked to the websites Ads of the World. The Pinterest board isn’t set up in niched boards, but I love following them because it allows me to see ads laid out tile after tile.

If you start following a lot of different creative advertising boards, then you’re guaranteed to run into one that was originally pinned either from their site or their Pinterest board.

Why Follow Them? If you’re looking for examples of print advertising campaigns that will give you inspiration.

AdsoftheWorldPinterest

Peter McNevie, Art Director

Continuing on with the world of Creative Advertising, one my favourite boards to follow is the one that belongs to Peter McNevie, who is an Art Director in Ireland. One of my boards that he has focuses specifically on Irish advertising. I must admit, some of the videos posted are hard for me due to the accent, but that’s the fun part of international advertising, learning about cultures. His boards also cover a variety of topics related to design as well. His boards are diverse and speak from experience.

Why Follow Him? If you’re looking for a place that aggregates video commercials, then you should definitely check out his Advertising Board. It’s a great place for inspiration if you’re looking for ideas.

Peter McNevie Pinterest

Cynthia Sanchez – Oh So Pinteresting

If you’re looking for someone that breathes Pinterest, but is also great at leveraging other social media than you should definitely get to know Cynthia Sanchez. I was first introduced to Cynthia through Google Plus where she offered to answer any questions I had about Pinterest.

She runs the blog “Oh So Pinteresting,” a website that offers great Pinterest tips for marketers and personal users as well as podcast. I’ve personally learned a lot from her, and have seen Pinterest in a different light. If you’re looking to keep up with what’s happening on the visual social network, and a pinner that will help you curate information regarding Pinterest, then follow her Cynthia’s account.

Why Follow Her? If you’re looking to improve your Pinterest Marketing efforts and to find out great information about the social network, follow her board and read her wonderful blog.

Cynthia Sanchez Pinterest

I’ve always found Hubspot a great place to get content, and there’s no better place to find out what all their great e-books and resources that will help with your digital and inbound marketing efforts. One of the most interesting boards that they have is one of unicorns and one for “Things with Spots.”

Why Follow Them? If you’re looking for webinars and e-book content, then this is the board to follow.

Hub Spot Pinterest

Want to go outside of the world of retail on screens and print and enter the world of pop up retail and package design? Then you definitely want to follow the Pinterest account of The Corner Store. On their board you can find inspirational designs for how to design retail locations as well as the way that restaurants are laid out. They’ve also got a great board with over 100 examples of web design.

Why Follow Them? This is a great board to get ideas on how to design packages and how people interact with a brand on a retail level.

The Corner Store Pinterest

Don’t forget to follow MCNG Marketing’s Pinterest Account, and to share your favourite marketing boards in the comments section.