Pinterest is all the rage these days, isn’t it? What was first just a way for people to pin recipes they will never try, has now grown into a full blown search engine.
Did you know that Pinterest is the second most used search engine that is non-Google owned? That is insane!
Maybe you think your Pinterest strategy for your business is currently working. I mean, you pin your blog posts, re-pin a few other people you follow, and you’re done.
WRONG. To get the most out of Pinterest, you need to have a consistent strategy. There should be a reason behind why you do anything for your business, including how you use Pinterest.
Today, we talk about five ways to improve your Pinterest profile and how to be seen by more followers.
You mean I have to spend my Saturdays stuck on Pinterest?! Not necessarily, but we’ll get to that later.
Think about it. A majority of the U.S. population have a typical 9-5 job. They are busy during the weekdays because they are at work. They aren’t browsing Pinterest (unless they’re killing time…) during the day because their focus is elsewhere.
Pinning during other people’s down times is the most ideal, because it will make their Pinterest feeds when they are browsing.
Does this mean you have to spend your Saturdays pinning content on Pinterest? Nope! There are programs out there that can automatically pin for you on a schedule. Check out Viral Woot, ViralTag, or Tailwind for scheduling your pins.
Tutorials, guides, DIY and recipe pins have a 42% higher click thru rate than any other pin. You can create a tutorial or guide for practically any type of small business.
A great way to come up with a topic to use for a tutorial that people are interested in would be to use Google Trends.
Google Trends is a free and easy way to figure out what is trending on Google (i.e. what are people searching for).
Say you are a DIY blogger. Before the holidays get into full swing (think end of October/November), search “DIY christmas,” as pictured below.
See how people are searching for DIY gifts? Use this information to craft your next blog post. Put together an ultimate guide on DIY gifts to give during Christmas. If people are searching for it on Google, they are most definitely searching for it on Pinterest too.
This is a major must-do if you don’t already. You might be sitting there thinking, “alt text…whaaa?” Yeah, I did too. It’s actually pretty simple though!
The alt text is what pops up as your pin description when people pin an image from your website.
Here’s an example:
See where it says “alternative text?” That is where Pinterest pulls in the pin description.
Here is an example of what it looks like once you pin it on Pinterest.
Your profile description is the introduction to your Pinterest profile. This brief, 160 character description should summarize what your business is and what type of topics you will be pinning. Below are a few great examples:
See how they each describe what they do and give a sense for what they will pin? Viewers want to know what type of content you pin before deciding to follow you or not.
I hate to be the bearer of bad news…but you gotta give up the cutesy board names. I know, I know. But you worked so hard on crafting the most clever board name! Well, the bad news is, you’re making it harder for people to find your boards.
For one, people want to know what’s on the board before they start following it. If you have a board entitled “yummy food for my tummy” that’s great and all except…it’s kind of a mystery what exactly will be pinned on the board. What type of food? Any type of food? What’s yummy to other people might not be yummy to others. See how their could be a confusion?
A better way to name the board would be “Healthy Dinner Recipes.” Descriptive and to the point – healthy dinner recipes. No confusion there!
I’m sure you know by now that you need to not only share your own content on your social platforms but that you also need to share other people’s content. For one, you don’t want to be pushing your products constantly to your followers, that gets old. Plus, providing extra valuable content to your followers will give your readers an extra incentive to follow you and trust you as a reliable source.
There are many articles out there that detail out the percentages of how much of your own content you should share and how much should be outside content. For my clients I suggest the 70/30 rule. 70% outside content, 30% your business related- content.
That doesn’t mean 30% needs to be you pitching your product/business, but a mix of promotion, personality, photos, videos, etc.
But what about the other 70%? Where are you supposed to find great content to share on social media? Below are the ways I use for finding great content to share on social media for myself and for clients.
People are sometimes intimated by leaders in their own industry because they think “I could never get where they are” but I think that’s a bunch of bologna. You can’t ignore industry leaders, because, well, they are a leader for a reason. Clearly they are doing something right, otherwise they wouldn’t be a leader. Take a look at their social media platforms and see what they post.
Are they posting more videos to Facebook? What pages are they following?
Are they more personal on Instagram? What types of photos are getting the most interaction?
Are they interacting more on Twitter? What publications do they tweet about?
By watching industry leaders, you can start to become familiar with the types of content they share and what gets the most interaction. This will then give you an idea of the types of articles and content you should share on your platforms.
Along with following industry leaders, you should also follow your peers. These are the people and organizations that are on a similar playing field as you. Now you may be thinking, “Wait! But these are my competitors!” and perhaps in some instances they are, but that doesn’t mean you can’t find value through following them. Heck, maybe you will end up having a business partnership with them at some point!
The point is, people who follow your peers on social media are most likely the same type of people you are looking for get to follow your platforms. It doesn’t need to be a competition, we’re all in this together as small businesses.
Pinterest is one of the largest search engines in the world now. People are browsing Pinterest on their mobile devices more than ever, even while they are shopping in a store! What is popular on Pinterest is sure to be popular to the world, so browsing what is popular on Pinterest is a guaranteed way to find great content to share with your followers.
To find the “popular on Pinterest” section, all you have to do is:
Creating Twitter lists is something I feel that is underused on Twitter, but can have a major impact. If you aren’t sure what a Twitter list even is, here’s your quick rundown: A Twitter list is curated list (you can create your own or you can follow others) where it only lists Tweets from the people that are put on the list.
For instance, say you want to make a Twitter list of local non-profits in your area. You would search on Twitter for all of the non-profits near your location and add them to your list. Here are some screenshots to help make this a little easier to understand:
How to create a Twitter list
2. Click on “create new list” on the right hand side of the screen
3. Give your list a title (for my example, we will do “non-profits in Dallas.” You can make your lists either public or private, depending on your needs. I made this one private to just show an example.
4. Find people to add to your list.
Once you add people to your list, you can go to the stream of your list to find the content that only they are sharing. It’s a great way to filter out your entire Twitter following to just a certain topic and industry.
There are hundreds, probably thousands, of tools out there to help curate the particular types of content you are looking to share. To list every single one of them would be exhaustive, but I’ve curated ones I have experience with and have loved or that I have seen highly recommended by others.
Google Alerts: Google alerts gets a bad rep now since there are many other programs out there, but I still set up Google alerts for each client I work with, just in case. Remember when setting up keywords to use quote (“) around phrases otherwise your inbox will be quite full by the end of the day 🙂
IFTTT: The best time saver ever. If you’ve never heard of it, might I suggest reading this article to get a really good overview (although I don’t agree with it completely crushing Google alerts! :)). Essentially, it’s a tool that allows different online programs and software talk to each other, without you having to do a single thing.
Here’s how it works: you can set up a “recipe” (their terminology) for the types of content you would want to share to be emailed to you. Say you’re in the technology industry. You can set up a IFTTT recipe that emails you anytime there is a popular article has been shared on the New York Times.
There are many more recipes you can create, this was just one example, so put your thinking cap on!
Pocket: Pocket is great for when you find an awesome article you want to share but aren’t ready to read entirely through the article yet. Pocket saves the article to view later. The best part? Once you save it to pocket, you can even read it without having an internet connection!
BuzzSumo: BuzzSumo is a great program to see what is getting shared the most on the web on a particular topic. You can also see topics that are currently trending, benchmark against competitors, and find key influencers in the keyword you selected to search.
Theneeds: The reason why Theneeds sticks out to me the most is that it not only pulls in relevant news, articles, and videos but also relevant social posts too!
Flipboard: Flipboard is a beautifully designed app that curates your interests from articles around the web. The design layout is drool-worthy!
Finding great content to share on social media doesn’t have to be hard. Once you set up a few of these suggestions listed above, you are bound to have great content surrounding you.