Pinterest can be a great way to get your blog content out there, but it can also be very involved.
When you’re a blogger you already have so much to do, that it can be difficult to add one more thing to the list.
I know because it’s part of the reason I have clients as a Pinterest manager. Being a Pinterest manager means I not only do Pinterest for my own blog but also responsible for my client’s.
So how do I find the time to manage several Pinterest accounts while still blogging on my own site?
In this post, I’m going to show you how I use Pinterest to systematically promote my blog and do the same for my clients.
Step 1: Choose Your Pinterest Scheduler
Personally I use and recommend Tailwind, but Pinterest does have a native scheduler itself. I don’t think it saves you nearly as much time. But this wouldn’t be a complete guide without going over it.
So Pinterest has a great scheduler built-in. I find Tailwind easier to use and saves me a bit more time, but you can absolutely get by with the Pinterest scheduler, especially if you’re on a budget. To see how Pinterest’s scheduler works, check out the video below:
I kind of hate that my first step suggests you to pay for a tool. But it’s worth the investment and it’s something I demand of my clients before taking them on.
Once signed up, you’ll need to set up your Tailwind account for success. This means:
- Connecting your Pinterest account
- Setting a pinning schedule
- Join some Tailwind Tribes
- Connect to your Google analytics and a few other things,
Check out this quick video tutorial I made about how to get started on Tailwind:
Step 2: Create Board Lists in Tailwind or a spreedsheet
Board lists help you to stay organized and make sure you aren’t ignoring pinning to any of your boards.
Board Lists in Tailwind
Using the Board Lists feature in Tailwind, group together your personal boards. Try to stick to 5 boards per List. I’d also focus on your own boards before adding in any group boards.
A note on group boards: Use the Board Insights feature to see which boards perform best. Then only include group boards in board lists that seem to be performing well for you.
I wouldn’t bother posting to boards that don’t do well for you. I would also consider archiving those boards on Pinterest.
If you are including a lot of group boards in your Board Lists, make sure you revisit your board insights. That way if a board stops performing well, you’ll know.
Note: I use a recurring task in ClickUp to remind me to do this monthly and I refer to it as a board audit.
Board Lists Somewhere
Your list can really be where ever you want, a spreadsheet, a Google Doc, a Note taking app, Trello, whatever works for you. Just somewhere that helps you remember okay, I have all these boards on this topic.
I think Airtable, is a great tool for this, because it makes it easy to link to different records, so you don’t loose track of what you pinned, where, and don’t end up spamming a board. You can check out this example Airtable base I made just for this.
Step 3: Set Up Pin Templates
Templates can cut the time you spend creating pins in half. While I used Canva for years, I finally cut the cord on it (I moved back to the free version) and now use Google Slides. The site Redefining Mom, has a great tutorial post on how to make Pins in Google Slides.
I find it is much easier to apply templates using Google Slides than it was in Canva. This is especially true if I needed to adjust the size of the Pin. In Canva my old out of date size template would no longer work, in Google Slides it’s not an issue.
Lets dig into setting up Pin Templates and keeping them organized:
Creating Pin Templates
The only downside to using Google Slides to create pins, is that most people selling templates, sell them for Canva. But that doesn’t mean you can sign up for their template subscription, it just means you take a quick extra step to build out the templates in Google Slides first. Don’t worry you’ll more than make up this time in how quick it is to create pins in Google Slides.
Step 1: Open Google Slides and Change the page Set Up
Once you have Google Slides open, go to File> Page Set Up (it’s towards the bottom).
Within the “Page Set Up ” options, select “Custom” from the drop down menu and I would suggest changing it from “inches” to “Pixels”.
Now, you need to decide on your Pin size, Pinterest says a 2:3 ration does best, so something like 600×900 or 1000×1500. However some people find that slightly longer pins do better, really it’s up to you what size you want.
Once you’ve decided your pin size, hit apply. you’ll now have blank slides upon which to build your Pin templates.
But before you go to town, there are a few things you can do that will not only make Pin creation easier, but will speed up the template creation process too…
In the menu options, click on “View” then select “Master.” This will take you to the Master templates. There are two things I want you to do in here:
- Change the default fonts to your branded fonts
- Set up your brand colors
Now, let’s go through how to do that….
Change the default fonts
Click “Click to edit master title style”, once it’s selected, chose your font from the fonts drop down menu – note that only Google Fonts will be available and there is no way to upload a custom font.
Set up your brand colors
Next, you want to set up your Brand Colors, this will not only save you a ton of time creating pins, but if you ever rebrand to different colors later on, it will make the switch super easy.
When in the “Master” view, click off of the slides, you should now see a “Colors” option:
After you click on “colors” you should see drop down menu titled “Choose a theme color” when you click on it you’ll see a list of colors with names like “text and background, accent, and link”
Select the color you want to change and then pick your color, you can do this with your brand color’s hex code or you can choose a default color:
Once your brand colors and fonts are set up, you’re ready to start creating your templates.
I went ahead and made a video showing you my best tricks to creating templates in Google slides:
Once you have everything set up, you’re ready to get down to business to use Pinterest to promote your blog.
Step 4: When to Be a Rule Follower & When to Break the Rules
Pinterest says that a 2:3 ratio on pin size is ideal. But depending on your niche you might find that a longer pin does better.
At least for now…
Being a rule-breaker can get you better results, but you do risk the chance that it won’t work better later.
So it may prove to be worth it to “break the rules”.
But there are certain “rules” you should never break. . .
Like spamming a board.
Or pinning the exact same thing over and over again to the same boards several days in a row.
Tailwind can help you to make sure you don’t do either. A pinning schedule keeps you from pinning a ton. And Tailwind will notify you if you’ve already pinned a pin to a particular board.
Just click on the yellow exclamation point to see when you last pinned it to that board:
If you’re not using Tailwind then I would recommend keeping track in some way of what pins you pin where, again I think Airtable is perfect for this without it becoming too cumbersome or overcomplicated.
Obeying the Rules of Group Boards & Tailwind Tribes
Being a part of group boards and Tailwind Tribes (available on Tailwind) is a great way to promote your blog posts.
But, to remain in the group boards and Tribes you need to be a good fellow pinner and follow the rules.
Rules usually consist of how many pins you can add per day and the pin ratio you need to maintain. For example, if you pin one of your pins, you then have to pin somebody else’s Pin from the board.
Rules might also say whether you can include affiliate links or promote products.
Obeying the Rules of Tailwind Tribes
I’ll be honest, I don’t always follow the rules. I do make sure I follow the rules for Tribes where I get a lot of shares. To what extent you follow the rules, that will be up to you. Making sure I stick to the rules is what takes up the most time when I’m working on Pinterest promotion.
But I do batch it. Rather than having to pin from Tribes daily, I go in once a week and pin a bunch of stuff to make sure my ratios are right.
Playing by the Rules of Group Boards
Here is a secret, there is no way to tell if someone is following the rules of a group board. But it is easy to tell when someone is spamming the board. Sharing to a group board and never sharing from it is a dick move. But you can get away with it.
That being said, if you and everyone else does that, that group board isn’t going to help anyone.
If you want a group board to stay helpful to you and others in it, you need to pin from it.
With the Tailwind Chrome extension, it’s easy to pin several pins from a board at once.
Step 5: Loading Your Pins into Tailwind or the Pinterest Scheduler
Now that you have an idea of when to break the rules and when to follow them, let’s dive into scheduling Pins. Because I use Tailwind, I’m going to talk about it in that context, but of course you can use the Pinterest Scheduler that I showed you earlier.
First, in case you didn’t know you can bulk upload pins to Tailwind, drag and drop them into the drafts page.
How To Add & Pull In Descriptions & Titles
The first thing you want to do is replace the default website URL with the content URL. Tailwind will by default enter your homepage. But if you are pinning blog posts you need to replace the homepage URL with the post’s link.
After adding the right link, Tailwind should pull in the post title. But it can be glitchy so you might need to add it yourself. In that case, type it in or copy and paste it from the site.
Next, you need to add in the pin description. Pin descriptions are important because they help your pins show up in searches. Giving you more opportunities to get your pin seen. A great description includes some keywords and hashtags.
But make sure you’re writing for humans and not algorithms. So write your description as if you’re telling your friend about the blog post.
Pro Tip: Look at your post’s intro paragraph or concluding paragraph to see if they can be your description. If it’s a new pin for an old post, search the URL in the Pin Inspector and grab the description you came up with last time.
Step 6: Scheduling your Pins
Scheduling is where there is some debate about if you should even use Tailwind or Pin manually. I do both.
Scheduling vs Manual Pinning
Should you pin in Pinterest every day? Or rely 100% on schedulers? There are lots of bloggers that find manual pinning has great benefits. But I don’t have the time to manually pin everything. So what do I do?
I do both manual pinning and Pinterest Schedulers. 99% of my pinning happens through automation with Tailwind. But I do try to go on Pinterest a few times a week and pin a handful of Pin for each of my sites.
This means I am in fact, doing Pinterest stuff most days. But I’m only spending maybe 15 minutes on it daily.
The days that I am working on scheduling a lot in Tailwind I spend more time, maybe an hour a week. But generally speaking, I’m not spending hours and hours every day, if I was, I couldn’t take on client work.
To save myself even more time I have a catchall board for each of my Pinterest accounts.
That means if I’m not sure what board to pin to, I don’t have to think too hard, I put it in my catchall.
Setting up Your Smart Schedule (Tailwind feature)
Ideally, you did this when setting up Tailwind. But just in case you didn’t, do it now. Your smart scheduler in Tailwind figures out the best times a day to schedule your pins. Because let’s be real, people are on Pinterest more during the weekend and in the evenings rather than at 6 a.m.
Tailwind knows this and has figured out the best times to publish your pins.
All you have to do you create your smart schedule is decide how many times you would like to pin per day.
If you have a smaller blog with less content, then 12 times a day is plenty.
As a general rule, I don’t recommend pinning more than an average of 20 times per day.
Keep in mind the Smart Schedule knows the best times to publish and takes the average number per day you choose. Meaning some days you will post more than that number and some days, less.
Tailwind Tribes (Tailwind feature)
Tailwind Tribes are kind of like group boards, they have rules and pinning ratios. But, they are a lot easier to find and request to be on. It’s also way easier to keep track of your pinning ratio.
With Tailwind Tribes you can search for tribes and then click “request to join.”
If you want you can include a quick note and then the owner of Tribe will receive a notice about your request. Sometimes you don’t even have to request, you can join with a single click, it depends on how the Tribe is set up.
Tailwind keeps track of how many pins you’ve submitted and how many pins you’ve scheduled from the Tribe. So it’s easy to tell if you’re actually keeping up. Keep in mind it’s easy for Tribe owners to see if you’re sticking to the rules or not.
I love the ease of use of Tailwind Tribes.
Now I should make note that the number of Tribes you can be a part of it restricted when you’re on the free Tribe plan. Tailwind Tribes is complementary to Tailwind Scheduling. Meaning you don’t have unlimited access to Tribes.
To get access to unlimited Tribes and submissions you have to pay for a power-up plan. I’d recommend starting with the free Tribes plan of 5 Tribes and 30 submissions. Then review the value you get from Tribes before upgrading.
Smartlooping (Tailwind feature)
Tailwind Smartloops allows you to reshare your most popular content. You can do evergreen content that shares year round. Or seasonal content for all your holiday posts.
Check out this sweet video from Tailwind on getting started with Smartloops:
But Smartloops aren’t completely set it and forget it. You want to keep an eye on it to make sure and take out content that isn’t performing well. You’ll also want to include new content that has done well.
Need help getting started with Tailwind? I put together a quick video tutorial
Spacing Out Content
Okay, now that you know all about the using Tailwind, it’s time to get to the meat and potatoes of scheduling.
First step, add your boards to each pin. Make it easy on yourself by selecting one of your board lists.
Now, that all your boards are on the pin, it’s time to schedule, which is where things can get tricky.
Pinterest has said it likes new content. It determines if the content is new based on the image or the URL. So you can create several pin images for each post to promote on Pinterest and each would be considered “fresh content”
But, you likely want to space out these different pins, I wouldn’t post them all the same day on the same boards.
What I usually do is stagger them. I’ll use Tailwind’s interval scheduling to space them out anywhere from 5-18 days apart. So Pin A will go to Board 1 on day one and go to Board 2 on day 18. Then Pin B will go to Board 1 on Day 7 and Board 2 on Day 25.
Or if that is too much work, you could schedule all your drafts and then shuffle them in Tailwind.
Step 7: Staying Consistent by Systemizing
Now that you know the ins and outs of pinning to Pinterest, it’s time to systemize it.
Keep in mind the first few times you work through this system, it might take you a bit longer.
But the more content you have scheduled out, the easier it becomes.
When You Have Nothing in Your Tailwind Schedule
If you’re starting from scratch begin with your popular content. Create pins or move older popular pins to drafts.
If you don’t have any pins in your Tailwind schedule at all, you’ll need a lot. You’ll want your content to consist of around 50- 90% of your pinning.
If you’re pinning an average of 12 times a day, you’ll need at least 56 drafts (8*7days).
Don’t freak out if you don’t have 56 pieces of content, remember you can create several pins for each post. I’d recommend at least 2-3 pins per blog post. So if you have at least 20 blog posts, 56 pins should be possible.
After all your drafts are loaded with the title, description, and correct url, start scheduling. Try to add at least 5 boards per pin, and don’t forget your “best of board”.
If a piece of content has only two different pins, do an interval of 14 days. If it has at least 3 pins, do somewhere between 18-20 days.
But don’t forget to space out the pins themselves.
For example: Blog post has both Pin A and Pin B.Pin A goes out Monday to board 1, and then 14 days later to board 2.Pin B goes out Saturday to board 1, and then 14 days later to board 2.
Staggering out the pins for the same posts, helps you to get more promotion time out of the post.
This will also help fill up your schedule for the upcoming weeks and months.
You should now only have a few open spots per day in your schedule. Fill these with pins from Tribes or Group Boards.
A week later, repeat the process.
Now, this can get tricky because you don’t want to redo all the content you scheduled out last week, it’s still being posted to Pinterest.
In the second week, you should pin whatever new content you have and then dig into your archives. Chances are you have some great posts buried that deserve to have more eyes on them.
It’s also possible that because they are old you didn’t create a Pin for them. Or that the pin is ugly. Make a new pin or two. If the pin is good, use it, and still make a new pin or two. This will help you come up with the 56 pins you need that week.
Once you’ve got 56 drafts, schedule them out and then fill in the holes in your schedule.
Keep doing this each week until you’ve got a good amount of content scheduled.
You should get to the point, where when you log in at the beginning of the week, half of your schedule is full already.
How to Keep it Going, Once You Have Content Scheduled
Now, that you only have an average of 6 pins per day to deal with, it should be pretty easy to fill them. Start with your latest content, followed by any content that seems to be trending.
Once you have enough pins to cover around 75-90% of your pinning schedule start scheduling. Remember to stager your pins, and do intervals of 14-20 days.
By doing so, you continue to build out your schedule. So you don’t need to spend more than an hour per week on Pinterest duties.
Advanced Pinning Strategies
At the end of the day Pinterest is an image based search algorithm, and can be great fro driving traffic to your site. However, in order to grow your business you likely want more than just traffic, that really only gives you ad revenue.
You want email subscribers, affiliate sales, and product sales. In order to accomplish this you need to know what your goal is with each piece of content you create and each pin.
For example, if you want more email subscribers, create a landing page for your opt-in and then create lots of pins to drive traffic to it. In case you don’t know a landing page is a page where they have one option, either join your list or leave. It sounds harsh, but it’s effective.
To drive product sales you might consider setting up a tripwire on your opt-in. Or creating a sales landing page, or some other funnel that you use Pinterest to drive traffic to.
As for affiliate marketing, you can create pins and use your affiliate links for the URL, however, it must be the affiliate URL, not a pretty link. Using a pretty link violates Pinterest’s terms. And just like any time you do affiliate marketing, you must disclose that you are an affiliate.
While you can create pins for products you’re an affiliate of, I’ve found driving Pinterest traffic to a review or a post that goes in-depth on how to use it for the desired purpose to be more effective in driving affiliate sales.
The bottom line is, don’t just pin to pin, have a goal in mind and make sure you are creating a pinning strategy that aligns with that goal.
Pinterest is a great way to get your blog off the ground and attract readers but it does take some work. It takes time and a strategy. You’ll need to:
- Get up and running with Tailwind/the native Pinterest scheduler
- Find and join Pinterest group boards and Tailwind Tribes
- Promote your content within those board and Tribes
- Decide when you’re going to break the rules
- Actually schedule your pins and make sure you stager them and use intervals
Hopefully, this post has helped you with your Pinterest strategy. If you have any questions, let me know in the comments!