Pinterest for Bloggers and Writers

Pinterest for WritersPinterest has been around for a while now, but I’ve yet to take full advantage of it for my blog. Although I mentioned it briefly in my How To Use Social Media to Promote your Blog post, I haven’t yet gotten a chance to dive into it to try and use it to it’s best advantage. While one of the main things I learned through experience (as well as through the people I interviewed and comments on the article) that the most important thing is to use social media not just as a way to promote yourself, but as a way to communicate and interact with your readers. It has to be more than just posting links to your posts on your blog or link’s to your business’s website. You have to interact with them.

While I will occasionally pin some of my own posts that I think I will work extremely well onto my own Pinterest  boards (such as workout challenges and recipes), I’ve yet to make it more accessible for people to check out my own Pinterest boards/pin my own posts. To do this, I’ve looked into joining both Pinterest as a business as well as adding plugins/widgets to WordPress to make it easier for others to both share my pins and connect with me.

 

Pinterest for Business

The first thing that was annoying about creating a business account was it made me follow five random boards of Pinterest’s “Most Popular Boards.”

My next step was to verify my website, so that my URL would show up on my Pinterest page. This is one of the main things that makes a personal profile different from a business profile. It requires you to either upload an HTML verification file to your website or a meta tag to your HTML. I wasn’t sure quite how to do this (and was afraid I was going to mess something up) so I did a quick search and found that The Blog Maven, once again, has a great walk through.

It’s pretty simple though if you have an FTP client on your computer, you just drag and drop it into your public.html file. If that sounds like gibberish to you (and trust me, those words meant nothing to me two weeks ago) check out the Blog Maven. She’s also got instructions on how to get verified if your on WordPress.com or Blogger.

You can also link to your Facebook page, Twitter profile and Google+ profile directly on your homepage as well.

 

Widgets and Plugins

There’s also a super easy widget maker that allows you to add Pin It links on specific images, Pin It links onto all of your images, as well as follow buttons to add as widgets to you page. I already had the ability to pin my articles on my site through the JetPack plugin fro WordPress (it’s under sharing), but I wanted more than that. So I checked out Pinterest’s Widget Builder.

In the widget builder, you have options to add pin it buttons to specific posts using html or Javascript. If you use the html, you’d have to add it to each post (which is great if you don’t want to add the social media sharing button via WordPress) but since I already had that built in, so I checked out the image hover option, which required me to use Javascript, which I don’t know quite yet. So I went hunting for a good plugin for a quick install.

The Blog Mavin again had some great recommendations, I decided to try to go with WP Pinner and Pinterest “Follow” Button plugin. WP Pinner is still in beta access, so I wasn’t able to get started with it yet (bummer!) so I needed to find a substitute. Pin It Button Plugin is a great way to add it to your posts if you don’t want to use Jetpack or manually add it.

I also checked out the Pinterest Pinboard Widget, which you can customize to show specific amounts of pins from a specific board.

 

Getting the Most out of It

As I said in an earlier post, Pinterest is most useful for image heavy blogs. But it can be useful for other purposes as well. I’ve had some success with other people re-pinning my posts (or pinning them directly from my blog) with  how-tos and exercise routines. Other good ideas for posts that work well are informational, easy to read, shorter posts, including lists, how-tos, recipes, and more.

Make sure your profile is filled out well on Pinterest, including all of your social media information, and a verified website so people can find you. You’ll also want to make sure to have a good, attention-grabbing description, and a photo that is clean and reflects the image of your brand.

Another thing to consider doing is inviting others to pin on your boards. While this is somewhat cumbersome as it requires you to invite them via e-mail, it can be a great way to interact with your close followers. Also make sure to follow influential pinners as well as people super relevant to your brand, and don’t just pin links from your own website, pin other informational resources that fit with your image as well.

Have you ever considered using Pinterest to grow your business? Why or why not?

About Kristen Gillette

Kristen Gillette is a freelancer who has written for a wide variety of publications including Philly2Night.com, two.one.five. Magazine, and Cred Magazine, thINKingDANCE.net, the Philadelphia Dance Journal, TechnicallyPhilly.com and more. She runs AdultBallerinaProject.com

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