Blog, Digital Marketing, DIY, Social Media Pinterest for Business: The Basics

Pinterest is a powerful marketing tool with 200 million active users per month, and is suitable for most B2C businesses. Rather than a social media platform, Pinterest is a search engine driven entirely by visuals (images and videos) which encourages users to save and share content through pinning it to their own boards.

Why Pinterest?

Pinterest drives 3 times more traffic to other sites than Google +, Twitter, LinkedIn, Reddit and StumbleUpon combined. It allows users to curate images and content, but unlike other social networks, the focus is on the discovery and curation of other people’s content, rather than your own.

One client of THE-OOP.COM increased her page views for a fashion e-store from 3,000 to 7,000 within one month, simply by pinning and sharing her photos in Pinterest and engaging in group boards.

Pros of Using Pinterest

  • Conversion rates are typically higher than Twitter and Facebook
  • Pinterest drives traffic to your brand (and lots of it!)
  • Pins give you more inbound links
  • User engagement is one of the highest of any social media channel
  • The half-life of a pin is 3.5 months compared to Facebook’s 90 minutes
  • Ability to view analytics
  • Content on Pinterest is incredibly easy to share

How to Get Started

Pinterest has options for both personal and business accounts, and we highly recommend signing up for a free business account to take advantage of the various features including:

  • Access to analytics – understand how your audience is engaging with your content and determine what is working and what is not.
  • Ability to post rich pins – the secret weapon of a business account. Rich pins are detailed pins which show a description and call to action buttons, and are essential in utilising the power of marketing on Pinterest.
  • Reach more people through paid pin promotions – more commonly viewed as advertisements, these are regularly pins for which you can pay to reach more of your target audience.

Pinterest Advertising

There are two types of Pinterest ads:

  1. Traffic campaigns: used to drive sales on your business website. You pay when a person clicks on your pin to visit your website.
  2. Engagement campaigns: used to increase reach on Pinterest. You pay when people engage with your pin, such as repinning and clicking.

Creating Boards

Now it’s time for the fun part of using Pinterest, setting up your boards and pins! Having a variety of boards is vital to having a successful account, and a mix of general and specific boards will help you to reach more people. The following are examples of board ideas for a travel brand:

  • Travel
  • Asia
  • North America
  • New York
  • Sweden
  • Bucket List Adventures
  • Foods to Try in the World
  • Travel Tips
  • How to Budget for Traveling

Remember, Pinterest is a search engine. Just as you would with a website, use keywords when naming your boards and in the description. Once you have added some pins to each of your boards (don’t be afraid to save pins to multiple boards) it’s important to edit the cover images to create a visually appealing profile for your brand.

Pinning Images

After you have created a couple boards, go ahead and start finding images of your own content to pin. To optimize your Pinterest profile for success, your pins need to be visually engaging to stand out amongst the crowd. The following tips will help your pins perform:

  1. Pins that are longer in length perform better than those that are wide. It is recommended to use a 2:3 or 1:3.5 ratio, and keep in mind that the width of the pin will be scaled to 236px once uploaded. We recommend Canva (free!) to design eye-catching pins to the correct specifications.
  2. Use text in your pins. Images that have text on them are also known to perform better. Think of your pin image as advertising, much like a billboard – you want to grab the customer’s attention and tell them what they will receive from your pin. The most successful pins have the title and a short description (one sentence) added to the image.
  3. Use keywords. The title, description and your content that is linked to the image should all be keyword dense. To discover great keywords to use, type your content into the search field on Pinterest and see what’s popular.

Pin Regularly

Pinterest suggests that you pin something at least once a day, however, the more you pin the better! Accounts that pin 10 to 30 times a day have the highest rates of success. Pay attention to the times you are pinning – if your target audience is location based, make sure you are pinning during the peak times for that location (generally 2-4pm and 8-11pm).

TIP: An easy way to hit 30 pins of content is to create different images for one link. For example, if you are trying to receive clickthroughs for swimwear, you could pin a few different photos of models wearing the swimwear and a flat lay. Other options include:

  • Lifestyle photos, eg. a customer using the product
  • Infographics
  • Photo collages
  • Lists
  • Flat lays
  • Tutorials/how-to graphics

Take these pins a step further and use different keywords for each one you create. This will be able to help you see what works best for future content and opens the door for more growth in the early stages.

Build your Pinterest Following

After you have established your Pinterest profile with boards, pins, and all the little details. It’s time to focus on growing. There are many routes you can take to achieve growth, but the best method is a combination of all. Depending on how much time you have to dedicate to your Pinterest, break them up into a few tasks at a time.

Group Boards

One of the best ways to utilize Pinterest for marketing is by joining or creating a group board. Group boards allow users with similar interests to share pins amongst themselves, theoretically leading to higher engagement. To create your own group board, simply create a new board and select the option to make it collaborative, then send an invite to those with whom you want to share the board.

Use Pinterest as a Person

Although your account is solely for your brand, it’s important to use Pinterest as you would a regular personal account – you can’t be discovered if you aren’t seen. Following other users on Pinterest is a great way increase your own following. Leave comments and engage with others in your target audience to increase your visibility and grow your following.


Pinterest is the highest converting social media tool and should be a part of your digital marketing strategy. Once you have created a following on Pinterest, the effort needed to maintain growth is minimal and you can rely on your quality content to do the work for you. Remember to use great keywords, have enticing visuals, and be active. Utilise your business account by checking the analytics once a week and improve from there. Implementing Pinterest as part of your marketing and branding strategy is vital. Don’t miss out on your opportunity to grow!