Content Marketing Best Practices for Driving Traffic with Pinterest
If you run a website or online business, you are probably no stranger to using social media platforms to boost exposure for your site, products and services. Pinterest is a gold mine of opportunity for gaining exposure, with its 200 million monthly users searching for ideas and solutions to their problems.
Pinterest strategy, however, deviates from the typical practices of other platforms. Rather than just raising awareness, the main aim of Pinterest is to drive traffic, and the best way to do this is not by simply posting links to your product listings and images. It’s by developing effective content marketing– creating useful content to draw in users to learn more about your products and services.
Here’s exactly what you need to know about content marketing so that you can grow your Pinterest engagement and drive more actionable traffic to your online business. Make sure to read on to the end to learn about the top 3 things you should never post on Pinterest.
What is Content Marketing?
Content marketing is a way to drive your ideal customer to your site by adding value to their lives and simultaneously plugging your product or service along the way. You become a free information service to the user first, and then you convert them as a buyer second, after building the know, like, and trust factors through sharing valuable information.
Content marketing can take many forms, but the most common form is written blog posts or even short informational articles that address topics people may find interesting, or problems people are looking to solve.
Why Content Marketing?
Pinterest is a go-to resource for users who are searching for solutions to their problems and planning for the future. They may be looking to buy the product you sell already and desire more information about it, or they have other problems that your product resolves and they stumbled across your brand through search.
By creating valuable free content, you attract an audience that is already seeking the help that your brand offers. They receive useful information about their problems and see your product as part of their solution – seems like the perfect way to drive qualified leads to your site, right?
The “What’s in it for me?” Concept
The “What’s in it for me?” mindset of online users will always be in place when people stumble across any content on social media and search engines. It exemplifies how it’s less about your brand and perspective, and more about the user and his or her needs.
In regards to content marketing on Pinterest, this will take the form of people wondering how your pinned content will help them. Your main concern should be creating content that first helps and informs the user, and second, promotes your product.
How to Do Content Marketing Well
To start your content marketing strategy, create an editorial calendar or bank of ideas that you can draw upon in deciding what to write for a blog post or article. Anything that could relate in some way to your product that provides valuable information to the user is fair game here.
Go-To Topics for Pinterest
“How To” types of posts work particularly well on Pinterest. You show how to solve Problem X with Y Tool- hint: this tool can be your product! “How You Can____” articles can take this idea a step further, placing the user in the action-taking position from the get-go.
Another topic that succeeds on Pinterest is “Top  ______”. If you own a clothing site, you might think about showcasing the “Top 10 Ways to Rock White,” with photos and little blurbs for all your white pieces. Any numbered list relating to what your brand is about is bound to catch a user’s eye, because people like to read quick and easy-to-digest articles.
Designing Pins for Your Content
The next step in your content marketing strategy is creating strong pin designs with text overlay displaying the title of your content. You share these pins on Pinterest to link back to the blog or article being promoted.
Never Post These Types of Articles on Pinterest
While topics of nearly every niche have a place on Pinterest, there are a few no-no’s that you must avoid when creating content for your business’s Pinterest.
Was your brand just featured in a lifestyle magazine? Did you just expand your headquarters? The harsh reality is no one on Pinterest really cares about these news tidbits you may want to share about your business.
News updates might be great on Twitter or Instagram, but Pinterest content has a long lifespan. This means content can can circulate anywhere from 6-12 months, so refrain from posting anything time-sensitive. You want evergreen content (content that does well any time of year) that will help people no matter when they find it. Seasonal content works well too, and will re-surface in search results yearly, as long as the content matter hasn’t gone out of style.
Behind the Scenes
Behind the scenes kinds of posts that show how a product is made or how things operate within your business do not work well on Pinterest.
This conflicts with the “What’s in it for me?” principle. Users trying to solve their problems don’t care about the happenings of your company. They usually haven’t heard of your brand. They just stumbled across your content through their Pinterest home feed or search results, while looking for an answer to their problems or desires.
As opposed to Facebook and Instagram, which promote brand awareness, Pinterest is more anonymous. People care more about solutions to problems, or discovering things that they want or need.
Pictures Without Links
Pinterest is not a hub for sharing photos alone. Instead, every image posted has a link that leads the user to another place. This means random pictures without any links do not belong on Pinterest, as this will only allow the user to click on it and enlarge the image, nothing more.
You must link to something when sharing pins even if you decide not to share written content. Pinterest is a tool for driving traffic to another place, so link to a how home page, a services page, or a product listing – just make sure there is a link with every image.
Are you ready to try your hand at content marketing on Pinterest? Join the Pin Coach Facebook group and leave a comment for content marketing ideas and feedback.