I’ll be speaking at Alt Summit in a few days on effective DIYs and how to market with Pinterest. Jill, one of my co-panelists, is very well-versed in Pinterest and will be covering that aspect of the panel very thoroughly. I do want to mention a couple of things here, though.
I’m not sure if this post is for me, for beginning Pinterest users or for my co-horts (not sure how many of my fellow blog friends actually read this) but I figure it’s good to get this off my chest and get my personal feelings out there on the matter. Feel free to chime in on the conversation in the comments below.
WHAT DO I PIN?
There were (and still are) a lot of mixed feelings about Pinterest when some terms of service changed, begging the question: What should be pinned to Pinterest? For me personally, I keep it to original sources only. DIY blogs, food blogs and shops are pretty easy ones. I also pin from fashion and interior blogs but only when the author of the blog publishes original content. For example, I’ll pin an interior that someone has styled and photographed themselves as opposed to the interior images they used for inspiration.
I never pin from tumblr, google images or stock photography sites.
HOW DO I PIN?
This is a dumb question, I know. But some people may not necessarily think about this so I feel it’s worth mentioning. I pin directly from permalinks – I click through to the single blog post or product page, then pin what it is I want. Pinning from the main page of a blog is really annoying – content always shuffles on that front page, so you’ll never be able to get directly to that blog post after new content appears.
If I’m re-pinning from peeps I follow, I’ll quickly click through the link to make sure proper attribution has been given. If re-pinning a recipe from Pinterest, wouldn’t you click through the link to make sure that the site is still working and the recipe is worth making? I treat all other pins the same way. Especially with art and design.
I also pin with descriptive language. I want people to be able to find the same awesome things that I’m pinning, so I make the image searchable with key terms. I also like to write little notes to myself about what made me pin the image in the first place. I never pin full tutorial instructions in the comments. It’s just plain annoying and just like stealing the content from that site or blog.
HOW DO I ENCOURAGE PINNING?
This is kind of a funny thing. I’m getting more into this now. Pinterest is a great way to get your content out there, but I say this with hesitation. I don’t like following pinners that are self-promoting all the time, so I try not to. I’ve not done a great job of this recently, but I’m working on striking a good balance.
After much thought I’ve decided that if I’m going to be pinning my own work, I should be pinning to boards marked for self-promotion. I feel like this works in my favor two ways: 1) It clearly tells my followers that this is something of mine, I’m not sneaky about promoting my work. 2) It’s a great way to aggregate all of the stuff that I’ve done in one spot. It’s easy for people to find what they’re looking for and to repin as they see fit.
I’ve also enabled a “Pin It” hover over all of my in-line content images allowing readers to pin directly to a permalink without having to click through to a single post. Chris developed this widget for me (you can download your own ISLY Pinterest WordPress Widget below). When you hover over any of the graphics in the main column on this blog, you’ll see a pin it icon. Simply click the icon and it takes you to a Pinterest pop up where you can pin that image and the attached permalink straight to a Pinterest board. Slick, and properly attributed. If you plan on installing it on your blog, it comes stock with a Pinterest icon, but you can certainly customize it using simple code.
I don’t write about this stuff very often, but I thought it was appropriate to share since Chris put in a lot of effort to make the widget for me and we are more than happy to share this with others. I’m looking forward to hearing Jill’s insight and advice on Pinterest. I have a feeling that I’ll be learning a lot from her and my other amazing co-panelists: Jenny, Chris and Chelsea.