Lately I’ve decided to start sharing more of my blogging secrets with you guys.
I figure there’s no point in keeping them all to myself because
A) I think there’s plenty of room in the blogosphere for thousands of bloggers even if a lot of us write about the same thing since we all have a unique perspective to share and
B) I need some co-workers to talk to! 🙂
I feel like I sit here every day blogging away all by myself with very few people to talk to who can understand what I’m talking about. I’m seriously trying to make my sister into a full time blogger just so I’ll have someone in real life to work with. lol
So in the vein of being transparent and sharing knowledge with my fellow bloggers, I’m coming to you today with some of my secrets to a successful Pinterest strategy. Some of it you may have heard me share on the blog before, but I’ve never laid it out this way in a single post.
If you’ve never been to my blog before….I am a CPA who quit 10 years ago to be a stay-at-home mom. I have three kids ages 9, 7, and 5, and I write about all kinds of things that relate to my life as a stay-at-home-mom, especially family finances. You can see a variety of posts (60 of them) listed on my About page.
Lately I have decided to focus on the money side of things, since that’s what I’m trained to do. I write about ways to make extra money from home and how to grow a blogging business. But sometimes I still throw in fun stuff like camping with kids. My blog pays better than my job as a CPA ever did, and I think it’s the best job in the whole wide world!
Does Pinterest Drive You Crazy?
I see so many bloggers freaking out all the time about Pinterest. Should you pin at certain times of the day? Should you pin with a scheduler? Should you pin manually? Should you delete under performing pins? Why is my traffic half today what it was yesterday? Can I bring back a pin that used to do really well for me? Did Pinterest change it’s feed and now it hates me?
I know all these fears & questions because I have wondered the same things!
Pinterest is on top of our minds for good reason – it brings MASSIVE traffic to our content with relative ease. It’s my favorite platform because it’s fun to use, produces results quickly, and it doesn’t have as many rules as other platforms (ahem, Facebook)
Pinterest Secrets from Me to You
It wasn’t until I found several solutions to my Pinterest questions that I began to feel more comfortable there. Until I figured out a few things, I was really flailing around without a clue as to what was driving me traffic and producing results (i.e. income) for my blog.
If you are serious about Pinterest and want to get massive sustainable traffic to your blog without pulling your hair out, there are some things you need to know.
- You can’t learn it all for free. The best trainings on Pinterest are not free. Believe me, I read alllllllllll the blog posts on Pinterest before I decided to invest in a course. In fact, I have a Google alert set up to deliver ANY blog posts on the internet that mention “Pinterest algorithm” in the headline directly to my inbox each week. I read them all! I glean nuggets of information here and there, but the tidbits I learn in these blog posts doesn’t compare to the paid learning I’ve taken on Pinterest. (I still have that alert set up to this day, just in case. 🙂
- You can (still) get great traffic using a scheduler 100% of the time. I have tried my hand at live pinning, and although I believe there is an ever so slight edge to it over scheduled pinning because of the control it gives you, I never found it to be sustainable, especially since I have nearly 800 pins to manage. I find that my time is better spent focusing on drivers of income like my email newsletter, product creation, and funnel planning than manually pinning. Hence, I will continue to schedule my pins until my income starts to decline.
I don’t know if you are in the same boat, but I have zero time to blog some days because I’m a stay-at-home-mom and sometimes the kids are literally sitting on top of me! I find time to blog in the weirdest pockets of time throughout my day, and I need all the time-saving hacks I can find so I can blog smarter for better results in less time.
There are the three things I highly recommend if you want massive results from Pinterest over the long term and don’t have the luxury of a ton of extra time on your hands.
3 Non-Negotiables for Massive Pinterest Results
I’m not playing around ya’ll. If you want serious results with the least amount of ongoing effort, then this is seriously what you must do.
1) Take a comprehensive Pinterest course & implement every step
I have taken 4 Pinterest courses to date, and hands down the best course I’ve ever taken is Pinning Perfect. It’s so good, I’d put it in my top 3 blogging resources of all time (and I’ve taken A LOT of courses). It has everything in it you need to know to set up a killer Pinterest strategy, from setting up Rich Pins to sourcing keywords for your pins. My favorite part is the systematized method they give you for running your Pinterest account, down to exactly how many pins of your own + pins of others to pin each day. It’s kinda nice having a set method + strict rules for this kind of thing.
In this course, Melissa from Blog Clarity (who helped write the course with Anna Luther of My Life and Kids), gives tons of tips throughout that she got straight from Pinterest headquarters! I love knowing answers directly from Pinterest. Saves me all the heartache of guessing.
Here is a glimpse of the Units in Pinning Perfect:
Each one of those units goes deep into strategies & explanations like this (this is what you see when you expand the contents of Unit 2):
I mean – seriously – you won’t be disappointed! If anything, you’ll be angry because you’ll realize all the things you’ve been doing wrong up until this point! I know I was. But I’m so glad I found this course because, if I hadn’t, I’d probably still be spinning my wheels.
I walked module by module through this course and implemented every single thing they recommended. I set up a Pinterest spreadsheet like they recommended and even followed their recommended pinning schedule + daily pin counts. I have used the same pinning strategy from this course for 2.5 years, seeing my account grow from 50 pins when I first took the course to nearly 800 pins to date. And it still works!
Anna’s strategy is crazy easy to implement once you have this spreadsheet set up. I adapted my spreadsheet over time….what I use now is similar to the Pinning Perfect template, but perfectly suited to my needs. I put instructions in a sample copy of the spreadsheet to explain how to use it and gave it to my sister so she can grow her blog in the same manner.
You can’t buy my spreadsheet anywhere, but I have decided to make it available to anyone who purchases Pinning Perfect as a bonus for getting it through me. I’m only making it available to Pinning Perfect students because you won’t truly understand how to use it until you take the course!
If you enroll in Pinning Perfect based on my recommendation, I’d like to give you a sample copy of my personalized Pinterest tracking spreadsheet. Just enroll in the course, then email me at lena at whatmommydoes.com with “Pinterest Spreadsheet” in the subject line and I’ll send it to you! But before you email me, join the private Pinning Perfect Facebook group (link in course). When I see you in the Facebook group, that’s how I will verify enrollment.
2) Invest in a powerful & flexible Pinterest scheduler.
The Pinterest scheduler I recommend (that’s also approved by Pinterest) is Tailwind (they offer a free trial so you can test it out). Melissa verified with Pinterest (and I agree based on extensive testing with my own account) that you are completely okay to 100% schedule your pins. No manual pinning is necessary to maintain a solid Pinterest strategy!
In fact, I will go one step further and say every minute you waste on manual pinning is a minute you could have been working on your monetization strategy (see point #3).
Tailwind is so powerful – there’s a learning curve to it, but once you have it down, you’ll be golden. I know a lot of people use Board Booster, and try as I might, I just can’t seem to make it do what I need it to do like I can in Tailwind (plus it’s not a Pinterest approved partner, which gives Tailwind more bonus points in my mind).
The main features I use for my Pinterest strategy are the scheduled pinning times (recommended by Tailwind once they hook up to your analytics) and interval pinning to board lists. In a glance I am able to see exactly what pins I have scheduled to pin each day and what time slots I have remaining to fill.
In the image below, you can see the pins I have scheduled for June 21st. You are seeing this correctly – I only schedule 28 pins per day. No pinning like a maniac for me! This is another little trick I learned in Pinning Perfect & it works like a charm.
Board lists is a feature that you can use to simplify scheduling. Using the Tailwind extension for Chrome + the board lists function, I can schedule out a pin to all relevant boards with a couple clicks. This feature gives you supreme control over which pins are scheduled out (including viral pins that you grab from Google Analytics) and when each image is pinned. This is the scheduler equivalent to manual pinning, which is why I believe it’s still just as effective as pinning in real time.
In the image below, the boards you see are included in my “budgeting boards” list. When you click on the “use interval” button on the bottom left, you can space out the repins to each board however far apart you’d like. This ensures you don’t spam your account or others.
With Tailwind on my side + the pinning strategies from Pinning Perfect, I spend approximately 1 hour per week scheduling pins. If I’m really digging into my analytics to test new strategies, I might occasionally spend up to 2 hours.
One hour on average dedicated to nurturing a platform that brings me an estimated $70,000 worth of my revenue per year? Way worth it!
Heads up! You can participate in a LIVE Summer Pinterest Challenge JULY 10th – 14th!
Anna Luther (Pinning Perfect instructor) and Melissa Culbertson (owner of Blog Clarity) are hosting this FREE event.
From Monday – Friday during the week of July 10, Anna and Melissa will go live in the private Brilliant Content Creators Facebook group with that day’s lesson (you’ll get a link to join the group once you register for the challenge).
- How to get a head start on gaining Pinterest traffic after the summer lull
- The blog post hack that’ll jump start your fall traffic NOW
- How to get old content in the Pinterest Smart Feed (mega important!)
- Easy ways to promote your pins
Plus you’ll get a detailed workbook to follow along each day of the challenge!
If you are on the fence about joining this course, this challenge is the perfect way to find out if the course is for you (hint: some of the ideas are pulled straight from Pinning Perfect). Keep in mind that the price of Pinning Perfect will be going from $149 to $197 on July 18th so this is a great time to decide!
I can’t wait – I’m taking it too! I took initially took the course so long ago that I could use a refresher. And I love live interaction with real life bloggers! 🙂
3) Write + pin smarter
Here’s the thing – you can and will achieve amazing results if you invest in & fully utilize the resources I mention in this post. However all good things in blogging eventually come to an end.
Even the most viral pin will eventually die off. They don’t fly high forever. While your pins are doing well, you need to stay on top of them and keep them scheduled out appropriately using the strategies in Pinning Perfect.
As your old pins die down, you must replace them with new pins. Your Pinterest strategy needs consistent fresh content. You must make the best pins you can every time and keep them scheduled out until they either take off or flop. It’s okay to have flops – you can learn from your mistakes and move on!
You can use the split testing strategies we covered in Step 20 of Traffic Transformation to get double the results with less effort. You can use other strategies from that guide to be smarter about your blog post titles & calls to action.
Even as your traffic ebbs and flows with pins going in and out of favor on Pinterest (something you cannot control beyond doing your best to schedule and pin with a strategy), you CAN control what happens when the visitors you DO GET land on your blog.
This is where a solid income generating strategy comes into place. I cannot stress this enough! The point I started making over $10k per month consistently from my blog was the point when I developed a strategy to make more from the page views I already had instead of worrying about getting more and more visitors to my blog.
Traffic is important, but even more important is what you present to those visitors when they land on your blog. You need both good traffic + an effective strategy to monetize that traffic.
I go into detail about these types of strategies in my guide Income Boost. It goes into topics like:
- What type of content is ALWAYS worth writing for the highest return
- The #1 thing you can do on Pinterest for immediate positive impact to your bottom line
- A strategy for sending qualified traffic to high converting content
- How to use your monthly income results to decide what to work on next
- The mindset shift you must go through to start making more sales on your blog
The Income Boost guide 100% relates to your Pinterest strategy because it will revolutionize what you decide to write about and pin from now on. It’s all about getting you to the point that every post plays into an overall monetization strategy that goes beyond “get as many page views as I can so I can make more ad revenue.”
Click here to read more about Income Boost >> (FYI – this guide is specifically for bloggers who want to monetize with affiliate products + their own products as opposed to ad income + sponsored posts)
That’s it for now!
I hope you got a lot out of this post! I know some people will read this and think I’m only trying to sell something. On the surface, that is a true evaluation. I am trying to sell you something. Just the exact things I think you need to take your blog to the next level. They worked for me & I know they’ll work for you. I hope you decide to join me on this journey! Take care.
COMING SOON: In depth Pinterest keyword training
I also have an announcement to make – over the past few years, I developed several strategies & theories for Pinterest keyword selection & pin optimization that goes down to the post level and also helps you rank the single post for Pinterest AND Google. I’ve never seen these theories taught anywhere else before, so I want to share them with you!
This will be a paid training because it will literally be a video walk-through to show you exactly what I do to mine Pinterest keywords AND the theory behind why certain pins bring traffic and others don’t. To join the wait list and be notified when it goes live, fill out this form. Estimated release date is September 2017 after my kids have gone back to school and I have more time to focus. 🙂