If you haven’t yet heard that Pinterest is the holy grail of blog traffic, you may want to to a quick search on Pinterest and see what you’re missing out on! It’s no secret that Pinterest, if used strategically, can drive blog traffic like crazy! But how? In my last post, I talked about how to set up your Pinterest profile to look professional. Now, I’m going to teach you 7 secrets to make your Pinterest pins look more professional (from the start!).
You don’t have to be a graphic design guru to master the art of professional looking Pins. What people often seem to forget or skip over are simple, basic elements that can elevate your pin from average to professional (and get the results you want). Remember, paying attention to the details is what elevates a pin from basic to professional.
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Why You Are Creating Pins in the First Place?
If you’re new to Pinterest or just starting out, then you may not know the reasoning behind Pinterest (and that’s okay, you’ll learn!)! Pinterest is a search engine (not a social media site). This means that people are looking through Pinterest to find out something. They could be looking for inspiration or a how-to, or simply looking to be taught something.
The reason you want to create a pin is to draw attention to a blog post, and get people to click on it! Think of your Pin cover as the cover for a book! You want it to catch people’s attention, and you want them to open the book and read (AKA, click on your pin and read your blog post!)
What You’re Trying to Achieve
By creating pins and circulating them on Pinterest, you’re wanting to attract people to your blog. You want to create eye-catching pins to grab people’s attention, and make them click on your pin! The more people that click your pin, the more people are visiting your blog! And of course, the more people that are seeing your blog, means that more people are reading, and can potentially become subscribers to your blog!
The ultimate goal of creating pins for your blog posts is to convert clicks on pins to views on your website! You want to do this by creating high-quality pins that make people want to click on them!
Before You Start
A few housekeeping items to keep in mind before you start making beautiful pins are:
1. Make sure you set up your Pinterest profile for success first! Find out how you can do that in 10 easy steps!
2. It’s not mandatory, but it always helps to be self-hosted. Not only does self-hosting boost your credibility, it allows you greater control over your website! Also, you won’t be able to use the Pinterest business profile feature of claiming your domain (it doesn’t work for free blog sites) unless you are self-hosted. Check out my list of Blogging Resources to get you set up for self-hosting success in a flash!
7 Secrets to Make Your Pins Look Professional (From the Start!)
Below you can find my list of 7 secrets to make your Pinterest pins look professional (from the start!). Note that each blogger will find their own tricks for success, as well as their own way of doing things. Utilize your unique talents, experiences and style to make your pins stand out from the rest!
1. Get Friendly With Canva
You may have heard this mentioned before, but Canva is my go to app/website for designing pin covers! Canva allows you to build pins from scratch, or you can use templates that are already created and tweak them to your liking!
With Canva, you can create pins with no images, or you can add images and manipulate them within the app to meet your theme needs! Canva is simple to use, and can be used on either your mobile phone or through the website (whichever you’re more comfortable with!)
Canva is how I’ve been able to create my pin covers for my blog posts! (peep below)
2. Use High Quality Images
In an age where phone cameras are increasingly incredible, as well as the wide array of professional cameras available, having blurry photos is no longer going to cut it. In order to stand out (in a good way) you need to have high quality images! I personally don’t publish pins with poor lighting or poor picture quality (especially when theres so many pins to choose from that are exceptional!).
You can achieve this through taking your own photos, or by purchasing stock photos! Creative Market is an excellent resource for stock photos (check them out here!)! I definitely recommend using your own photos if you can, or purchasing stock photos. Free stock photos may seem like a great idea, but they hinder your Pinterest results.
The problem with free stock photos is that everyones using them. This makes Pinterest confused when it sees the same image being used over and over again. This makes it harder for your pin to not only stand out, but for Pinterest to properly categorize it (AKA, what kind of pin is this?).
3. Spell Check!
It breaks my heart when I see a super cute pin that has a big ole’ spelling mistake dead centre. Not only am I not going to save that pin, but I’m probably not going to even click on your blog post! Why? Because I assume theres going to be more where that came from.
Adopt the mindset that your pin cover may be only chance to impress someone. If someone is going through Pinterest and stumbles on your pin (the one with the spelling mistake), they may just keep scrolling past it and never check out your blog. You could have the best article in the world, but I guarantee your traffic will be seriously stunted if you don’t take the time to proofread your pins.
This goes for grammar too. Make sure each pin you create is spell-checked and grammar checked! Don’t let a simple mistake be the reason your Pin doesn’t get noticed!
4. Pay Attention To Details
Similar to spelling, take the time to make sure your pins are stellar quality. Take the time to make sure graphics aren’t crooked! Make sure text is placed dead centre! Canva is great for this both on the app and website, as it has guidelines to drag your graphic/text into a perfectly measured spot! Seriously, take the time to make sure your pins are well placed!
5. Tie Your Blog Theme Into Your Pins
Consistency across all social media platforms is a great way to build yourself and your blog as a brand! Having pins and graphics that are all over the place in colour, fonts and design can lead to a bit of confusion. People won’t be able to instantly recognize your pins or your blog! You want to be recognized!
Uniformity is an excellent way to achieve recognition! You can see how my theme (shop cute themes here!) and my pins tie into one another. Notice how the pink of my blog theme is the same as the pink I use in my pins (check out below)? This is intentional! I want to create a consistent theme across all platforms!
6. Create More Than One Pin for a Blog Post
This is also known as A/B testing. The reality is, not everyone is going to like each graphic you make! Some people are naturally drawn to different colours, fonts and designs! A/B testing is creating two different pin covers that link to the same blog post and sending them both out to be re-pinned! This allows you to reach a greater audience and appeal to a wider spectrum of people! Note: keep all tips above included in each pin you make!
7. Don’t Forget the Pin Description!
So many times I see people uploading pins without a pin description! By not adding a description you’re missing out on a chance to include keywords and hashtags which can help further boost your pin! Before uploading your pin, do a quick search of your topic on Pinterest and see what keywords are associated with that topic! Include those in your bio, as well as up to 10 relevant hashtags (I separate with a few spaces to look less spammy).
Other Things to Keep In Mind
While having professional looking pins is a huge bonus, it’s not the be all end all to sky-rocket your blog traffic on its own. Having a Pinterest strategy is key to making sure you’re active on Pinterest and driving the right traffic to your profile! Pins rarely go viral without at least a little bit of work, this is where your strategy comes in!
You can check out how I set up my Pinterest professionally here, and how I grew my Pinterest like wildfire in the first month here! If you want my absolute best advice, check out EllDuclos’s Pinterest E-Course for learning the ins and outs of Pinterest! Her course is the reason my Pinterest has been so successful! Normally $32, you can grab it for $15 (until April 1st, 2019) using the code SPRINGAHEAD (and if you absolutely love it like I did, you can become an affiliate as well)!
Last but not least, I always recommend Tailwind. Tailwind is a pin scheduler that aids in helping you be ‘active’ on Pinterest for a majority of the day! It works behind the scenes to pin when you’re not available to! It is an excellent tool for driving traffic to your Pinterest!
You can try Tailwind for free here and get up to 100 scheduled pins and access to Tailwind Tribes! (My post here explains Tailwind a little better!). If you want to try Tailwind Plus for one month free (up to 400 scheduled pins!), use my special link here!
Like trying anything new, it takes time to master. It’s easy to get discouraged when you feel like you’re not seeing growth quick enough. Trust the process and believe that you can achieve your goals! I promise you I was so frustrated when I first started getting serious about Pinterest, and it wasn’t until I started harmonizing all of these strategies to see the growth that I have!
To this day I still look back on old pins I designed and wonder what I was thinking! Practice really does make perfect. The more you work at creating pins and nailing down your Pinterest strategies, the more results you’ll see!