Did you know that Pinterest marketing can actually help you step away from your business, have more free time and market smarter?
We have another amazing episode in store for you today. Pinterest expert Cara Chase is the CEO of Chase Digital, a Pinterest marketing agency, and she's the founder of Pinterest Power Up, the first Pinterest marketing membership community designed for entrepreneurs.
She loves nothing more than seeing those light bulb moments with her clients and members when they finally see how Pinterest can build up their businesses.
Today, she’s going to share how Pinterest marketing can actually help you step away from your business and make more time for the things that truly count. Not to mention, she’s going to share a ton of current Pinterest marketing strategies that you can use to boost your Pinterest account and obviously to get more leads over to your Web site and into your product sales funnels.
How Cara Became a Pinterest Marketing Expert
Cara’s story is definitely unique. She started her first career as a special agent criminal investigator, and after 10 years decided to leave because she wanted more autonomy.
She ended up becoming the social media manager for the band Megadeth, and managed 13 million fans across 17 social media accounts. That was her first job in social media, and even though she thought it was really fun, she decided to leave that job for the same reason that she left her first career. She wanted more autonomy, so she decided to start her own business.
“When I started my own business, I did what I think we all do, which is all the things. I was doing Website building, and email marketing, and social media and blogging and pretty much anything that could fall under the digital marketing umbrella.”
After a few years, she started to realize what tasks she liked doing, and what she wasn’t as passionate about. She realized that Pinterest was really where she wanted to niche down because it was having the biggest ROI for her clients.
This let her deep dive into all the changes and strategies of the platform. She was able to stay ahead of everything and keep up-to-date on the latest changes in Pinterest strategy. “Niching into Pinterest not only made sense for me because it was the biggest ROI of my business and made the most difference as far as my email list and my sales… I was able to really dive into it and become an expert.”
Cara makes a good point, that she figured out as her business progressed. To achieve success, you don’t need to do all the things. Just do the one thing that you’re really good at.
Why You Should Be Using Pinterest to Help You Have More Free Time and Market Smarter
The biggest benefit to using Pinterest is that it allows you to repurpose your content and get off the content treadmill, says Cara.
What does she mean by “content treadmill”?
“When you're in the online entrepreneur space, we constantly have this pull of create more content, create more content, whether it's videos or blogs or podcasts or even just Instagram posts and posting in groups, and all of this stuff that takes up so much time. And then at the end of the week, you're left with, oh, I didn't really accomplish what I needed to accomplish because I was on this treadmill of post after post after post.”
Cara emphasizes that when you’re using Pinterest, you don’t need to constantly create more content. You just need to create more pins for the content that you already have. There are no limits to however many pins you want to do for a single piece of content.
Instead of needing to create high-quality content over and over, you can use Pinterest to help you save time and drive traffic to the content that you’ve already created.
You can create a bunch of different types of pins to draw different people in – a title pin, a description, what the reader is going to learn, quotes, infographics, and now it can be video. But all of those different things will lead back to the same piece of content you’ve already created. Pinterest sees all of those separate pins as the new content.
“It enables you to really step back and, you know, care more about the value of the content you're connecting pins to, instead of just kind of pumping it out because you're checking a box.”
Using Pinterest: The Basics of How Cara Uses the Platform to Maximize Her Traffic and Minimize the Time She’s Spending on it
Cara shared some of the basics of her Pinterest strategy. She’s spent a lot of time optimizing the amount of time she puts in to using the platform and the results that she sees.
How many pins should you strive to create per post?
Let’s say you have a new piece of content that you want to put on Pinterest. How many pins should you create per post?
Cara says that while you should always be testing your audience to see what works for them, she generally starts with five pins per piece of content, that are all different types of pins. Then she sees how they do from there.
If the pins start doing well and driving a lot of traffic, or your audience is showing a lot of interest in an older piece of content, you can create more pins for that piece of content.
Using Analytics to See What Content is Driving the Most Traffic
Cara says it’s important to not just start pumping out pins for content immediately. She uses Google and Pinterest analytics to see what’s driving the most traffic and what her audience wants to see, and then goes from there.
First, she goes into Google Analytics to see what traffic is coming from Pinterest specifically and where they’re landing.
“That might be, OK, this blog was one of my top three traffic drivers this month from Pinterest. So I'm going to go ahead and create three new pins this month for that piece of content, because that's obviously what people are clicking through to my site for.”
She also uses Pinterest analytics to see what pins are doing the best within Pinterest. When she sees a specific pin is doing really well, she tries to replicate the content or the graphics to see if she can make more pins that are equally as successful.
If she has a pin that’s driving a lot of traffic, Cara will often recreate that pin as a template to repurpose it across different content. “Pinterest is a visual search engine. So keywords get you found because it functions on keywords just like Google does or any other search engine. But the graphic is what actually gets people to look through.”
Content versus graphics: how to determine what is making your pin successful
Cara says that sometimes pins can be successful because of the graphics and sometimes because of the content that you’re offering to your audience. The best way to determine which one it is, she says, is through trial and error and split tests.
When Cara starts a promoted pin campaign for a new client, she’ll take the exact same pin graphic and do two different questions to test the keywords. She’ll also create pins with the same description, but two different graphics.
“There is a level of testing that's involved. But if you keep it really simple, like an a/b test, you're going to get that information really quickly.”
Pinning new content versus old content: What’s the ratio?
In a typical month, Cara will create five new pins for a new piece of content. That’s the sweet spot for her, because it doesn’t take too much time with the templates she’s created.
Then she goes back and looks at her pins that are successfully driving traffic. She usually will create one, two, or at most three pins for that content as well. That way she’s keeping up a mix of new posts and older content, to continue driving traffic to her website.
Crafting the Perfect Pin: Descriptions, Graphics and More
Creating the perfect pin isn’t easy, but Cara shares some of her tips and tricks that she uses to write the best descriptions that help people to find her pins and get them to click.
Are keywords important?
Picking the right keywords are absolutely essential if you want your pin to be found. Pinterest is a visual search engine, and keywords are what will make sure your pin pops up when people are searching different topics.
If you’re creating a pin on Pinterest, you’ll have to think very carefully about the title of your pin (this is what shows up in the different feeds) and the description (which will encourage people to click on your pin).
When writing a description, Cara says that you should lead with a strong call to action, or have an eye-catching topic, like “top tips” or “best way.” Then make sure you include your keyword phrases in the rest of the description.
Cara says you should be careful not to “keyword stuff,” which is when you just copy and paste a list of keywords into the description.
“You want to have two to three sentences that are conversational, like normal sentences, that you would say and speak that have your keywords in them.”
Hashtags: how many is enough?
In your description, Cara also says you want to include anywhere from one to three hashtags.
She usually includes three, the first one is usually a more general hashtag, like #entrepreneurship. The second one is more specific, like #pinterestmarketing. And then your third hashtag should be a branded hashtag, like #CaraChace.
Don’t forget to check your URL!
The purpose of Pinterest is to drive traffic away from its site. Unlike other social media platforms that want you to stay on their sites, Pinterest is the one digital marketing platform that redirects traffic away from it purposefully.
This means you want to make sure that the URL linked to your pin is the correct one and that it goes specifically to where you want it to.
“The problem that I see often with people as they'll make the mistake of they have a new blog, and instead of linking to the specific URL they'll accidentally link it to like the general blog page. And then what happens is someone clicks through and they're taken to the general blog page instead of the blog itself, and then they'll click right off.”
Using Pinterest to Drive Traffic: The Best Kinds of Pages to Create Pins For
Generally, you’ll convert better if you drive traffic to a blog post with a lead magnet or freebie or a content upgrade through Pinterest. However, you can also drive traffic to a landing page or an opt-in page without getting penalized.
But from Cara’s experience, the general Pinterest user will convert better on pages that contain a lot of information, because that’s what they’re looking for when they click through to your page. In general, blogs with strong lead magnets or a call to action is probably going to convert better.
This doesn’t mean you can’t use Pinterest to drive traffic to sales pages, though. “I have had good success with sales pages or landing pages that were almost like a blog, they had enough text or explanation in it.”
Pin Sharing Strategy: Up-to-date Pinterest Tips about the Best Way to Share Your Pins
Cara also has some specific strategies that she uses to make sure she’s sharing her content in the most effective way.
Tailwind is the most effective tool to share pins
Everything that Cara does on Pinterest, she does through Tailwind. “I could not do what I do for myself or my clients without using tailwind. They're a fantastic tool.”
After she creates new pins, she feeds them into her Tailwind smart schedule so they’re put out consistently. Setting up a Tailwind smart schedule ensures that you’re putting out content when your audience is on Pinterest.
How often should you pin per day?
Cara pins an average of 12 times per day, and her Tailwind smart schedule is optimized throughout the week to make sure that she’s pinning the most on days that her audience is on the platform.
She says it’s easy to set up your smart schedule with however many pins per day you want to set. That number is up to you, though she recommends thinking through how much valuable and informative content for your audience you can actually post per day.
“I know that there are people out there that recommend doing a huge number of pins per day… And whatever this gets into, like, is this really an ROI for you? in order to fill up 20, 30, 40, 50 slots per day in your smart schedule, you're going to be spending a whole lot of time on Pinterest filling up this queue.”
For Cara, taking up a lot of time to fill up a queue isn’t a great ROI for her, because it doesn’t make much of a difference based on how much content she puts out. 12-15 pins per day are optimal for her, because it gives her enough room to re-share the amount of content that she needs, in addition to her own content.
More is not always better on Pinterest, but you can play around with what settings work best for you. If you want to do more pins per day it’s easy to change that setting, but make sure what you’re posting is valuable.
“Pinterest knows what you're repinning. and if you are repinning stuff that goes to dead links or spam, it will penalize your profile.”
Repinning: Tailwind Tribes or group boards?
The entirety of Cara’s repinning strategy is with Tailwind Tribes, and it’s actually what drives the majority of her traffic.
Cara says that she sees a lot of people still using group boards, but it’s not as effective of a strategy as it was about a year ago.
“Pinterest actually came out and said, we don't want you using group boards for marketing, like stop ruining it for everyone marketers. That was not the intention for group boards. So they actually started penalizing group boards that were spammy, that were not engaging.”
Cara jumped off that bandwagon as soon as she heard that pinning in group boards would affect the performance of her profile in Tailwind Tribes, and hasn’t looked back.
When it comes to Tailwind Tribes, Cara recommends that you do a little research to find good ones that are engaging and have valuable content to share with your audience. She also says that her pins get shared much faster when she posts in Tailwind Tribes, because pins can sometimes take a while to get seeded in a newsfeed and start showing up.
“By submitting to Tailwind Tribes I start getting that traffic right away and Tailwind Tribes are reciprocal. I don't know of any Tailwind Tribe that doesn't have that in their rules. If you're going to submit, you need to share.”
How to Get Better Results on Pinterest while Spending Less Time
Using Tailwind has definitely saved Cara a lot of time. Aside from creating the graphics, when she goes in to create pins and feed them into her Tailwind queue, she can batch an entire month of content in about an hour and a half.
Is there a part of this process that you don’t feel comfortable with, or don’t want to spend your time doing? You can also outsource to save yourself a lot of time.
Cara says there are a lot of Pinterest virtual assistants (VAs) out there that you can hire to do some (or all) of this process for you. She herself uses VAs to help her with her business and clients.
There are many benefits to hiring someone who knows about Pinterest and its strategy. VAs can help you and make sure what you’re putting on the platform is consistent, content- and time-wise.
Cara says, “Pinterest has also said the number one thing they value is consistency.” Don’t let yourself get burned out, instead of pinning a lot sporadically, make sure you’re pinning consistently every day, even if it isn’t that much. Cara recommends starting out slow, figuring out the platform, and building up from there.
Pinterest Success: Using Pinterest Traffic Evidence to Build Your Business and Create Digital Products
Cara says that you can use analytics to your advantage to think about how to further develop your business.
Her lightbulb moment was during the first nine months of running her blog, when she would spend hours pumping out blog post after blog post.
Looking at her analytics, she realized “there was a single blog that was generating an incredible amount of traffic percentage-wise on my website. And that traffic was all coming from Pinterest.”
She decided to use this information to her advantage and went back to that blog post to repurpose that content. She put the information into a free e-book and put it behind an email gate. That freebie tripled her email list within six months.
“That's the magic of Pinterest. And that's not a pin that is ever going to die. It's still there. Whereas an Instagram post you got about 24 hours before that's you know, no one's ever gonna see that again. I wrote that blog in 2015 and it is still one of my top three traffic drivers every single month.”
This is what she wants to emphasize the most for business owners – you want to be making decisions that bring you the biggest ROI for your business instead of spending a lot of time on things that may not actually have results.
Manual Pinning: Should it be a Part of Your Strategy?
Even though there are a lot of sources out there that say you should spend some time regularly manually pinning, Cara says that when it comes to efficiency and productivity, manual pinning doesn’t do much for you.
“Every single minute that I'm doing something has to make sense for the ROI on my business. And manual pinning is not something that I want to sit and do. The difference in time that it would take me to manually pin fifteen pins a day, it's just not even comparable to sitting down and spending an hour and a half a month.”
Cara says that while this may have been a part of good Pinterest strategy in the past, it’s most likely the platform has changed. Manual pinning has zero impact on her personal marketing strategy.
Pinterest Will Get You More Traffic, Save You Time, and Help You Be a Smarter Business Owner
Cara loves Pinterest because it helps her be a smarter CEO.
“It lets me look at the hard data and the numbers and take action based on what I know is going to work instead of I hope I get enough likes on this Instagram photo. It's something that I can dive into and knock out and move on to other things that I want to do, whether that's personally or professionally. And I know it's going to work.”
Cara says the platform is great to help you be smart about your marketing and the time you spend on your business.
Wondering where you should start if you’ve never used Pinterest before?
Think smart marketing, and look at your analytics to find your top five blogs and start with those. Create graphics and templates and see where you go from there.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed, just take it one step at a time and start with data. You don’t need to create pins for all of your content right away, instead create pins based on content that you already know works.
Resources for Entrepreneurs Wanting to Build Their Pinterest Strategy
Want to learn more about Pinterest, or understand what you need to do to build a top-notch Pinterest profile?
Cara has created a free resource called the 90-Day Pinterest Success Roadmap.
It’ll take you step-by-step through clicking over to make your profile a business account instead of personal, all the way through to your first promoted pin campaign. The resource covers how to find keywords, create a custom segment in Google Analytics just to find your top five traffic drivers, make sure your settings are correct, how to claim your website and more. Find that in the link below!
She’s also got a Pinterest marketing membership, called Pinterest power up. If you’re interested, follow the link to her website below.
//LINKS IN THE SHOW//
Check out Cara’s website here – https://www.carachace.com/
Find the free 90-Day Pinterest Success Roadmap here – https://www.edenfried.com/pin-success
Learn more about Cara's Pinterest Marketing Membership here – https://pinterestpowerup.com
Take a look at Cara's Pinterest page here – https://pinterest.com/carachace