Can small business owners become awesome Pinterest marketers? Can you use Pinterest to bring more people into your world to increase the efficacy of your email marketing? And can you grow your email list through Pinterest?
Meagan Williamson spills the beans about how to leverage Pinterest as a marketing platform and shares some super simple and quick tricks on how to grow your email list through Pinterest.
Spoiler alert: Pinterest is probably not what you think and YOU can use it too!
Check this out!
SOME EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS: (0:14) Join our FREE Facebook group. (4:10) Is it Meagan Williamson or Megan Williams? (6:58) What is Pinterest and what do people use it for? (10:58) Growing an audience throught Pinterest. (14:35) Understanding the different media types on Pinterest. (18:05) How much content should you share on Pinterest? (20:46) Providing value on Pinterest. (24:48) Building your email list with Pinterest. (28:49) Finding the right balance between different pieces of content. (33:39) Subject line of the week with Meagan Williamson.
What is Pinterest and what do people use it for?
As Meagan explained, Pinterest is a visual search engine. It's a place for people to curate inspiration, and education, and store their ideas virtually. You can curate videos, images, links to projects, and even plan your next business move – anything you’re researching has a place on Pinterest.
Business owners often struggle to figure this platform out because they’re not sure how to use it. If you want to leverage it as a marketing platform, think of it as a search engine.
Just like when using other search engines, some people head to Pinterest with the intention to plan a purchase. They're not there to catch up with friends and see what they’re up to – they're looking for visual inspiration or to find How To tutorials. So it's perfect for any business – both B2B and B2C.
Growing an audience through Pinterest
While it's true that people head to Pinterest to buy, Pinterest is not a conversion tool. It's a platform that can help you grow an audience. And you can leverage the platform in many different ways – not just through your blog (in fact, it's perfectly okay if you don't have a blog!)
Meagan tells us that the secret is to layer Pinterest into the marketing you are already doing and to repurpose your existing content with Pinterest in mind. So if you're already podcasting or using Instagram for your marketing, for example, you can take any juicy bits and create something for your Pinterest audience to engage them and bring brand awareness to your business. In other words, it's about repurposing with purpose and specifically for the platform. That means taking the extra time to tweak existing content so it works for Pinterest.
This will play to your advantage because Pinterest has seen exponential growth over the last few years. It's different from the other social media platforms – it’s not as noisy, and it’s a much more inclusive and diverse place. They're intentional about growth, which is why so many creators and small business owners who feel frustrated with their growth on other platforms are heading to Pinterest.
Understanding the different media types on Pinterest
People tend to view Pinterest as their planner. This means they might be browsing and saving content for months before they're ready to make a decision and buy. For you as a business owner and content creator, it means you have to remain mindful of that customer journey and take it into account when uploading your content assets to Pinterest.
Just like other social platforms, Pinterest has different content formats. The most common is the standard pin, which is an image you can add a destination link to, such as a landing page, your website, or a third-party link. A pin can also link to products or product collections.
Right now, you can also add links to video pins, even though this format will eventually be removed from Pinterest in favour of something called idea pins. Idea pins are a type of multi-page format content aimed at educating. They're Pinterest’s answer to the move towards engaging video. To create an idea pin, you can use a mixture of images, videos, or short clips to teach somebody something or give them high value.
The great difference between Pinterest and other platforms is that it encourages you to include destination links. Because it works more like a search engine. And those links will bring you traffic and help you grow your audience for months and years in the future, unlike an Instagram Story, for example, which is here today and gone tomorrow.
How much content should you share on Pinterest?
There's no perfect or magic number of pins you have to create on a daily basis. What pays off, Meagan shared, is consistency. The Pinterest algorithm figures out what’s consistent for you and your unique account over time. Pinterest grows exponentially when you show up consistently and add high-value content.
So however much you decide to post, aim to be consistent and optimise content for the platform. In order to do that, Meagan suggests you do some research about the sizing of pins (it’s a little different from other platforms) and figure out what you can realistically and consistently put into your ecosystem.
In other words, look at the content assets you already have (video, podcast, blog, email marketing, etc) and work out whether you have any pieces of content that you can repurpose into a pin for Pinterest. The more you show up and add existing content you've repurposed (as well as brand new content), the more interest you’re going to get.
Providing value on Pinterest
The way Pinterest measures whether your content is of high value is through saves or re-pins. This metric shows that your content is resonating with your audience and is valuable enough for them to save to their own account. Impressions, reactions, and comments aren’t as valuable on Pinterest – what matters the most is that people are saving your content.
So when you’re creating content, think about something that would be highly save-worthy – things that people might want to refer to later. Think of the kind of content (like infographics, for example) that you tend to save because you want to take action on it at a later point and when you're ready. Aim to create and post content that will be referred to again and again.
The action of saving a pin to your own account, Meagan explained, also sends a signal to understand the quality of your website and to what you're sending traffic to. The technology visually scans your image to understand to who Pinterest should show your content. It also looks at the copy associated with that pin. So don't miss out on optimising your pin title and description.
Meagan also advises having boards on your Pinterest account. If you pin content to a board called “How to start email marketing”, for example, Pinterest will know to show that pin to people who are interested in email marketing or email newsletters.
Building your email list with Pinterest
Pinterest is ideal for moving people onto your email list. Meagan suggests you do this in a way that doesn’t annoy the user. So always aim to adjust your content in order for it to make sense for the platform you're posting on.
The first thing you want to do is to give enough information so you’re closing the loop on Pinterest. That means that if you create a pin that tells people you're teaching them 3 ways to do something, for example, you're giving them what you promised. Don't say you're going to teach 100 ways and then only teach 3!
What you can do after you share your 3 ways, for example, is to let your audience know they can get more information by accessing your blog, your podcast, or downloading your lead magnet. But always close the loop – give people enough information to stop them in their tracks.
If you want your Pinterest audience to join your email list by downloading your lead magnet, give them something of high value and explain why they should go and get it. Use strong calls to action and tell them that in order to get more value they need to take the next step. Make it a no-brainer – give people value and a clear reason as to why they want to download your lead magnet. Also, let's remember that Pinterest is a visual platform, so give people a taste of what they’re going to get, like a mock-up of what you're offering.
The landing page for your lead magnet
When it comes to the landing page for your lead magnet, other platforms (such as Facebook or Instagram) have conditioned us into thinking that email opt-in pages need to be short and sweet. And that's true if your audience comes from a platform where they already know who you are. There's authority and familiarity there, so people are more willing to give you their email addresses.
But Pinterest is different. Chances are that users have never heard of you before, so you have to create a landing page that will convert your audience. Tell people what they’re going to learn from your lead magnet, who you are, and why you are the person to teach them what you teach.
Give them multiple opportunities (above the fold, middle, and below – on the page) to sign up. In other words, Meagan shared, you want to create a landing page that has some meat on it. Give people more information before they make the decision to give you their email address – this helps them overcome objections and reassures them.
Finding the right balance between different pieces of content
Depending on how many vehicles for content marketing you have, you want to share a balance of content on Pinterest that helps you create visibility and grow your audience (i.e. offer free value) and mix it up with requests to download your lead magnet, for example.
Your first priority should be to repurpose existing content (such as Instagram reels or TikToks) into high-value content that's optimised for Pinterest. Think about being strategic and sharing content that links out. That way, you can encourage people who want to learn more or take the next step, to sign up for your lead magnet.
When creating videos or images that lead to a pre-existing destination URL (like your opt-in page), always focus on what the customer experience looks like. Are you taking an interesting angle with your pins and offering something new? Does your content look varied and different? If you're adding 10 pins a day, and one of them links to your lead magnet, you can easily get away with that. But if you’re posting a lot less, you want to take into account the visual representation from the user's point of view. Because the last thing you want to do is to use the same pin over and over again.
Subject line of the week with Meagan Williamson
Meagan’s subject line is from an email she sent recently, and it’s “My two secrets that I’ve learned working with Pinterest.” This works well because it positions Meagan’s authority – she works as a private contractor with Pinterest, so this subject line lets her list know that she has authority. Because if Pinterest trusts her to teach Pinterest marketing, then you should too!
Plus, everyone loves a secret, right? Meagan knows that a lot of people subscribe to her email list because she shares best practices that have been taught by Pinterest directly and have been tested on hundreds of accounts. So this subject line was based on the fact that Meagan can share these ‘secrets' because she has a direct line at Pinterest and can ask them questions about any changes, trends, or specific situations. And her audience loves that!
Useful Episode Resources
You can connect with Meagan on her website, where you can also find her FREE lead magnet that teaches you how to optimise your images and your videos for Pinterest. You can also find Meagan on Instagram and TikTok.
FREE list of the top 10 books to improve your email marketing
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