10 Pinterest Marketing Mistakes “Experts” Still Teach
If you’re not careful when browsing the old Google for “Pinterest Marketing Strategies,” you could end up with a bunch of “Pinterest Marketing Mistakes” instead! Yikes!
Pinterest, like any social media, has a very specific algorithm, or set of “rules,” that you have to play by if you want to get ahead.
The difference with Pinterest though is that while the rewards can go beyond ANY social media platform out there, the punishments are also much harsher.
You have to appease the Pinterest gods if you want to get ahead, and many of the so-called “expert marketing strategies” out there these days will unfortunately lead you in the wrong direction.
If you google “Pinterest marketing strategies,” you will see that the first several articles are all dated between 2012 and 2015.
How unhelpful is that? Do you know how many times the algorithm has changed since then? …A LOT!
It’s REALLY hard to find up-to-date Pinterest information, tips, and strategies these days, because the platform is always changing.
Avoid these common mistakes unless you don’t care about the speed at which you grow.
P.S. If you are new to these parts, let me tell you how we do things around here.
We don’t just blog about blogging. We didn’t make all of our money online from teaching other people how to make money online.
Our main squeeze and money-maker, Avocadu.com, is in a separate niche (health and fitness). We teach our blog and social media strategies from the standpoint of this website. You can check out our latest income report for some more insight as well.
Okay… Moving on!
10 Pinterest Marketing Mistakes “Experts” Still Teach
1. Thinking success happens overnight.
There is no shortcut to 10,000 followers when you start at zero, so just take a second to digest that.
There ARE ways to grow your following faster than others though. Most of the tips from the “experts” won’t get you very far though. DO NOT follow/unfollow.
I know it’s tempting, and it works quite well on Instagram. Pinterest is not the platform for that though.
Your account will end up getting docked even more for the spammy following of so many people at once and then again when you have to unfollow them.
There is a reason Pinterest sets a limit on follows and blocks you from doing this. They don’t like it.
DO create the best pins on the planet. Because Pinterest is a completely image-based platform (like Instagram), the best photos win.
There is an example of one of my pins that I created for our health and fitness website.
The best free tool for creating custom images is Canva.com, and that’s what I personally use to create all of my pins. Yes, you have to have great content behind your pins in order for it to get shared and consumed, but pins are what gets your readers IN the door.
Focus on creating the best content and images possible, and followers will come.
2. Caring about Pinterest Analytics.
I’m in a couple of Facebook groups specifically for “Pinterest strategy,” and everyone is ALWAYS talking about Pinterest Analytics.
And you know what? 90% of those folks are all in the 1k-7k follower range, and they’ve been stuck there for ages.
I grew our following to 80k in a year and didn’t pay an OUNCE of attention to Pinterest Analytics. Okay I gave it a go at the beginning, but I stopped when I realized how useless it was.
It’s useful at the beginning to know the basics of how content works on Pinterest. I.E. Infographics are GREAT at getting lots of repins, but they SUCK for getting clicks (people read the content straight from the infographic or pin it for later and never bother to actually look at your content behind the pin).
Study it for a week or so to wrap your head around the basics, and then let it go.
3. Joining any and all group boards you can find.
Be careful here. When you start a new account, group boards WILL be the single most valuable tool that you can use to share your content and grow your account.
This is because group boards will have a LOT more followers than you have on your account, so it’s a way to get your content seen by thousands without having to get those followers on your own account.
Oh and pingroupie.com is the best place to look for group boards if you weren’t already aware of that.
DON’T join 40 group boards and start willy nilly pinning on all of them every day.
Just because a group board has 30k followers, does NOT mean that your content will perform well on that board. If there is a bunch of poorly performing pins on that board or any spam, the board will be ranked very low and your content will perform similarly to others, whether your content is good or not.
DO join Tailwind to see how well your pins are likely to perform on that board BEFORE you bother to start pinning.
If the board is scored poorly, your content won’t get seen or get any repins, and it will weigh down your account. It’s vital to the success and fast growth of your account. They also offer a free trial, so you can check it out before you commit to anything.
Bottom line: Bad group boards are worse than no group boards. You want to leave these boards immediately.
These stats can be seen in Tailwind, which is an invaluable tool to growing your Pinterest account quickly. Join Tailwind here.
4. Using Board Booster.
Gear up for some tough love, peeps. I don’t care if Board Booster makes your life “easier.” Board Booster is NOT a Pinterest-approved third party app.
A lot of people swear by this, but I’m a fan of sticking to the basics and only using apps that are specifically approved by Pinterest.
It’s no secret that Pinterest HATES spammers. Everything they do is to get rid of, block, and prevent spam.
This is why they dock your account when you too many things out of the norm like delete pins, move pins, create too many new boards, etc. They associate “normal, routine behavior” with safe pinners. Anything out of the norm sets off their spam alarms.
Use at your own risk.
5. Engage with your followers.
Many articles you read will encourage you to not only put content out there for your followers but to actively engage with them to build trust.
This little bit below came from Amylynnandrews.com. It was at the top of google search when I typed in “Pinterest tips.”
Now Amy does know her shit, for sure. I will give her that, but I do disagree greatly with the Pinterest “tip” below that I found on her Pinterest Tips article.
No. No. Just no. This is not Facebook OR Twitter, and this platform is WILDLY different than either of those social media platforms.
There is a reason that Pinterest has a very small limit on the number of comments that you can put out there in a day. It’s because they associate comments with spam.
They don’t release too many “official limits,” but the general consensus is that the limit is between 3-6 pins (at the time of writing this).
DO NOT comment. Pinterest is ironically not a “social” platform in the traditional sense. They don’t push you to communicate with users in the form of comments.
They want you to SHARE content via repinning.
If you’re reaching out to a fellow pinner about something in particular or joining a group board, then of course go ahead and comment.
My point is that you shouldn’t waste your time commenting with the purpose of “engaging” with your followers.
DO repin. Don’t worry about repinning the content of your followers. You likely aren’t following them anyway, and you shouldn’t be unless they pin content that is relevant to your business. Pin a few great pins from your home feed every day though. Pinterest likes when you are personally active on their platform.
6. Having personal pins and boards to show your “personality.”
DO NOT pin your favorite hairstyles, makeup tutorials, and outfits if you are in the health and fitness niche.
Your followers DO NOT CARE about this, and it’s not the reason that they followed you.
DO pin holiday or other content that is RELEVANT to your brand. If you are in the health and fitness niche and you regularly pin a lot of healthy recipes, go ahead and have a “Healthy Christmas Recipes” board if you think it’s relevant to your followers.
Keep everything else that YOU find relevant, but your followers will not, on a personal account. DO have a personal Instagram account that your readers can follow if they’d like to see a more personal side of you.
Instagram is for the “raw” and “real” you. Pinterest is not. My instagram account is @laurenitous, and the healthy food and yoga content you will find on there relates to our health and fitness blog, Avocadu. Alex’s Instagram account is @alexnerney, and the blogging and travel content you will find on there relates to this blog, Create and Go.
7. Downloading too many social media plugins.
DO NOT download 5 different plugins for your website that provide all these little gadgets and things here and there to “drive more traffic” to your blog.
DO find one or two really great plugins with multiple capabilities. We use and recommend Ultimate Social Deux. Yes, it’s $15. GASP! I know, we all love free plugins…
This one is a multi-purpose social media plugin, and it won’t slow down your website.
You should have share buttons at the top of your articles and the bottom. The sides are good too, depending on what kind of look you are going for, but don’t get a SEPARATE plugin for this!
Find one or two plugins that have all of the capabilities that fit your needs.
You can check out Ultimate Social Deux here.
8. Pinning too much.
The more you pin, the more your content gets seen and repined and the more traffic you get, right? Not necessarily…
I’ve experimented with pinning as much as 70 pins in a day and as a little as 10. The traffic from the two isn’t wildly different. Here’s why.
Pinning your content TON will give you a better chance of getting repins and traffic.
That is true. What happens though is that people get burnt out on your content…
If you pin the same stuff every day (and most people have to if they’re pinning 70-100 or more pins/day), you essentially saturate your followers.
You don’t gain new followers fast enough, so all of your old followers see the same content over and over. This results in less repins overall, and will just bring your account down.
Pinning less means that your content gets higher repins, which means that more new people end up seeing it.
Find a balance that works for you. Now this does depend on the number of followers that you have as well. You can pin a lot more when you have a lot more followers and reach.
Oh and P.S., as of right now, there is a lifetime limit of 200,000 pins on any given Pinterest account. If you reach this limit, you will be forced to delete pins or start a new account if you want to keep pinning.
If you’re in it for the long haul, aim for long-term growth.
Which brings me to my next point…
9. Thinking there is a “one-size fits all” pin for everyone.
There is an example of one of our infographic pins for Avocadu.
There is no magic size for the perfect pin.
The magic size is what YOUR followers respond best to. I have found a magic size for MY followers. It’s generally about 735px by 1500px. But it depends on what you are trying to achieve. This is what works for my health and fitness account, but I need smaller pins for my Create and Go account.
If you are in the DIY niche and showing step-by-step pictures in your pins is what your followers respond better to, then you will need much longer pins. If you’re making infographics, you will also likely need a much larger pin.
Create a variety of different pins using Canva, and find out which ones your followers respond to the best.
10. Focusing on followers rather than content.
On any social media platform, the first thing newbies do is focus on getting as many followers as possible as quickly as possible. I get it. We all want more followers. More followers = more traffic. This is true.
But focusing on crappy, short-term strategies will only translate into minimal and slow growth and ultimately waste your time.
I’m going to say it AGAIN: Focus instead on LONG-TERM growth. Create the best possible content and pins on the platform, and the followers will come.
Alright sexy Pinterest people, check out our other Pinterest resources below
Related Topics and Courses:
- Pinterest for Business: The Ultimate Beginner’s Guide from Actual Power Pinners
- How to Set Up Your Account and Drive Traffic Via Pinterest
- Optimize Your Website for Pinterest Pins and Traffic
And our ultimate resource for success on Pinterest: Pinterest Organic Traffic Avalanche Create something awesome today.
Co-Founder, Create and Go
P.S. I want to hear from you today! No for real, get out from behind that keyboard and let us know about yourself! Use the comment section and introduce yourself. 🙂
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Alex & Lauren
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