Pinterest is THE place to be at the moment, actually anyone seems to be on Pinterest. We humans are visual persons so I think that is one reason why Pinterest got so damn popular over the last year or so. I remember when a friend told me about Pinterest and I thought, “Ok, great, another social media platform to keep up with” and quickly got over it because I felt already overwhelmed with all the social media platforms around. But it seems Pinterest is getting one of the important ones. Here are a few facts about Pinterest I found today doing some research.
Some facts about Pinterest
- Pinterest is the 3rd most popular social media website and in the Top 100 most popular websites on the planet (YES, on the planet)
- Nearly 70% of all Pinterest users are women and 50% of them have kids
- They spend in average 18 minutes on the site daily
- The most important categories include DIY/Crafts, Recipes, and Quotes
- The best time to pin is between 2pm and 4pm in the afternoon and between 8pm and 11pm in the evening
- Most Pinterest users are between 25 and 34 years old, the second biggest user group is between 35-44
- Pinterest generates 27% more revenue per click than Facebook
- Most famous sources for Pins are Etsy.com, Google.com, Flickr.com, and Tumblr.com
- 80% of Pins are retweeted, while just 1.4% of all Tweets are!
- It has 23 million users every single month
Why is Pinterest important for you as an Affiliate Marketer?
We know the quote
Pictures are worth more than 1,000 words
So when you pin a picture it is very likely that people will see the picture and re-pin it or like it. Pinterest makes it very easy to share pictures and if people find something nice or cute they just click re-pin or like, it doesn’t take longer than the blink of an eye. So if you want to get a message across you need
a. a good amount of followers
b. an appealing, cute or informative picture
Let’s start with the followers….
It is very easy to gain followers on Pinterest. You can register for an account here. Make your profile nice: add a picture, add a bit about yourself (including your website link – you never know ;-)) and create or modify some boards of your liking. After that you can pin and re-pin all images from Pinterest but you can also go to other websites (including your own) to pin an image. And that is the beauty of Pinterest. Don’t make the mistake and go to your website and pin all images you have there. Find a good mix, pin some images from your site, pin some from people in your target market – basically participate like we need to do in all social media networks. I just think that it is much easier on Pinterest because people will see what you pin and most probably follow you just because of that. I bet you can already see the potential!
But it gets better…
Make your picture stand out on Pinterest
YOU decide what image to pin – and you decide the message you deliver. So for example, you can not just use a picture from the beach on your travel website but you can put a banner over it and a message.
Here is what I quickly did in Photoshop. I show you in a minute how to do that as well.
Wouldn’t you agree that the pictures above stand out more and give you more attention than this one:
So let’s dig right into it, in the following video I show you how I created the banner with less opacity with and without the button
Pinterest for Business attention
If you do not want to create these banners yourself, you can get a very cheap package with tons of styles exactly for that – just go here.
Link your pictures on Pinterest for Affiliate commissions
1. Add Affiliate Links, but cloak them!
It it possible although I wonder if it is still allowed. John Chow (a well-known Internet Marketer) wrote on his blog that Pinterest skims their website for affiliate links and simply replaces them with their own. Very clever, if you ask me. I mean – on the one hand we want to have a piece of their big cake by “using” their traffic to make us money, on the other hand – of course – they want to keep their traffic for themselves. Sharing revenue might be the answer so it would look better for them and for us to use affiliate links. The customer though, has no disadvantage from it so why not sharing the revenue? Maybe Pinterest is thinking about that option, too, because it would make the platform much more interesting for all kind of Internet Marketers.
But there is a way around. If you cloak the links correctly, Pinterest won’t recognize them as affiliate links and so won’t change them though. Some people report that they make up to $1,000 on Pinterest daily using this – but I doubt that, I more think that they spam until they get banned. It’s up to you if you try it – but please keep in mind that you make your business dependent on Pinterest and their policies. If you use Affiliate links on their site, make sure you host the images on your own. There are free services such as Tiny URL to cloak your links but Pinterest already has them in their database and it is very likely that they will pick them and change the links. However, there is a premium plugin available from MaxBlogPress called “Ninja Affiliate” – it is great for many things but one definitely is that you can cloak your Affiliate links. Still, please be aware that you do not need to spend money on it, you can also the second way, forwarding users to your own website. I show you in the video how to cloak your links if you want to add your Affiliate links directly to Pinterest.
The second option might be less powerful but most probably be better for your business and reputation.
2. Link back to reviews on your website
I know you might be tried to choose the easy way – who is not? It is much easier and less time consuming. Creating a good article or review, maybe a video, is much more time consuming than simply cloaking your affiliate link, even if you brush up your picture as described above, and adding it to the picture you pinned on Pinterest. But – in the long-run this method might be much better, for several reasons. First of all – you do not depend on Pinterest Policies. If they do no longer allow affiliate links – they might ban your account. And with that your revenue is lost. If your business depends on something – in this case Pinterest – I’d say you do not have a real business. I believe that it is much better if you go the long way – you create a great review, give your customers an amazing value and then you pin a brushed up picture on Pinterest. Done well, you’ll not just get a lot of visitors from Pinterest but also new subscribers and long-term customers.
a. Install Shareaholic – a free plugin to your blog (or any other which gives you the option to pin your post to Pinterest)
Enable the plugin, it should look like this, it is pretty self-explaining. Just make sure that you mark the checkbox for Pinterest:
Under each of your posts you now find the social sharing buttons you have chosen.
b. Write a great review and make your picture stand out as shown above.
Here is a sample review I wrote for the Microphone I use for Podcasting and Video Tutorials
You can brush up the picture (as shown above) and uploaded it to the post. Just upload it to your post as a normal picture and include it in your writing. That’s all, you do not even need to use it as a featured image.
c. Save your post, do not forget to include your Affiliate Link in the review.
d. Click the sharing button for Pinterest under your post.
e. Pinterest opens with all the pictures you have in that post, choose your brushed picture and pin it.
f. You’ve created your pin! It now links back to your review page, which contains your Affiliate Link. The text you add to the box (in this case “Microphone for Podcasting”) is the anchor text you use.
I’ve just used a picture without a banner – I’m sure my picture would stand much more out of the crowd if I would. As mentioned above, the second option is much better if you plan for the future because you do not depend on Pinterest’s Policies.
After all, people pin to Pinterest to organize what they like and enjoy. They want to get inspired, find ideas for their wedding or their new bedroom. They look for products or crafts they can give away as gifts. So here are some tips for your Pinterest usage.
- Often they pin products but not just. That’s how you should do it as well – do not just pin products but also craft ideas or quotes if that fits to your business. So when you build up your account make sure you do not just focus on pinning your own products but also on other things you like.
- Organize the pins in different boards. The better you organize your pins the better your followers can decide, what they really want to see and what not because you can also just follow boards and not everything the person pins.
- Follow important Pinners – they spend a lot of time on building their accounts and pin every day. If you follow them, your pins are also seen on their site and might be re-pinned or liked by them. Imagine, how many people see a pin re-pinned by them! An important pinner for you is someone who has a huge amount of followers, is active and pins products or ideas related to your niche.
- Each pin you post is a backlink. That is another reason why it is better to pin from your site rather than direct Affiliate links – you get the backlink, even if it is not a do-follow link.
- To get more attention, put the banners (as shown above) on your images; add promotions (or coupons?) there, be creative so it is more likely to get notified.
I truly hope you enjoyed the tutorial. I spent about 10 hours putting it together, doing research, recording the videos, etc. and I know it will give you a head start and hopefully an advantage in using Pinterest for your business. If it has helped you in any way, please do me a favor and use the social media buttons here under this post. If you have any comments, idea, or questions please do not hesitate to leave them as well, I come back to you 🙂