How to Make a Pin Go Viral
Hey all you Pinterest obsessed people!!
You are having trouble with your blog traffic, aren’t you? And you’re hoping Pinterest can help you out.
Guess what? It can!
Your traffic is down, right? And you’ve tried all of the tips and strategies out there to boost your blog traffic, but it just isn’t working.
Now you don’t know what to do next, but you are hoping that Pinterest has the answer.
And it does! Did you know that you can increase your blog traffic simply by making a pin go viral? And it’s so easy to do!
Wait, whoa…say what? How is making a pin go viral easy? If it were easy, wouldn’t everyone be doing it?
Yes, everyone would be doing it, if they knew how. But they don’t. That’s why I’m going to tell you how! Because you are so tired of hearing crickets on your blog. You’ve put a lot of work into it. You want people to read your stuff!
Creating a viral pin really isn’t rocket science! If you keep in mind these four super easy steps while creating your pin, you can make your pin go viral!
What is a Viral Pin?
A viral pin is a pin that has become very popular in a short amount of time, like three to seven days. It has become popular really quickly and has received a ton of clicks and saves.
How Do I Know If My Pin Has Gone Viral?
It’s easy to check! What you do is check your Pinterest analytics. See how many clicks, shares and views your pin has gotten. You need to have at least 1,000 re-pins, shares or clicks in a three to five-day period for your pin to “go viral”.
You can also look at the bottom of your pin. There it will tell you how many impressions you have gotten and how many clicks you have. You want to pay attention to the clicks – they are what matter. The impressions are just the number of people who have seen your pin, not clicked on it or saved it.
Why Do I Want My Pin to Go Viral?
Because it boosts your traffic! If your traffic is in a slump, you can give it a nice boost with a viral pin. Having a viral pin draws people into your website and blog. You get more views, more clicks, more saves, and your website traffic goes up.
That’s what you want, right? An increase in traffic and people reading your blog posts?
Lots of people have had increased traffic from viral pins. Look at Anastasia Blogger – she had a nice little boost in traffic around Halloween with her very first viral pin! And she had been blogging for a year before she had a pin go viral!
Katie from Joyful Messes had a pin go viral too. She had been blogging on an old blog for quite some time, and just started a new one. After two months, this pin went viral! She got over 25K page views in her second month of blogging!
How do I know a viral pin will increase your blog traffic? Because I am a Pinterest Expert! I have taken many courses on managing Pinterest accounts, creating pins and becoming a Pinterest VA, so that I can help you to manage your Pinterest better. I love to learn about Pinterest and want to share everything I’ve learned with you, so that you can use it to grow your blog traffic!
So if you are ready to make your very first pin go viral, then read on!
Four Super Easy Steps to Making Your Pin Go Viral
To make your pin go viral, you need to pay close attention to four things: Your Stock Photos, How Many Pins You Make, Your Headlines, and Your Pin Descriptions.
Step #1: Remember That Your Stock Photos Matter
Why? Because Pinterest isn’t liking the use of the same stock photo over and over again. Everyone uses the same photos, and this confuses Pinterest.
For example, if you have an image of a lady carrying a pitcher of tea, and one blog uses this photo in a pin about how to reuse tea, and another blog uses the same photo in a pin about spending quality time with your family, Pinterest gets confused.
Why does using the same image in multiple pins confuse Pinterest?
Because Pinterest doesn’t know how to categorize the pin then. And if Pinterest can’t categorize the pin, it makes it harder for you and me to find the pin when we are searching for posts on how to reuse tea or how to spend quality time with our families.
Pinterest categorizes pins in three ways: it goes off of what the picture is saying, it goes off of what the title is saying, and it goes off of what the description is saying. It links all three together, to categorize the pin and to show it in people’s Pinterest feeds.
Say there are two different pins using the same little boy as the pin image. One pin is about behavior and one is about activities. This confuses Pinterest and so neither pin performs well.
Each stock photo has its own code or url. And it doesn’t matter what you do to the image, that code will go along with the pin. So every pin with that image on it will have that code attached to it.
And that really confuses Pinterest.
How Do I Make Sure I Don’t Use the Same Photo as Everyone Else?
The best way is to buy your images. Don’t use the free ones. Or you can take your own photos. This way you always have a unique image.
You can also use graphics, instead of photos, depending on what kind of pin you are using it for. I recommend doing this for holiday posts only though.
But if you have to use a stock photo, you can look to see if the photo has been used already.
To do this, upload your pin with the photo already on it into your Pinterest account. Then click on “see more pins like this” and it will show you all of the pins with that photo in it.
If there are too many, delete your pin and find another photo.
What if I Really Want to Use an Image That Everyone Else Is Already Using?
Sometimes you have to use stock photos, especially if you are just starting out and can’t afford to buy photos yet. Or if you aren’t a very good photographer.
Sometimes you just really love an image and don’t care if others are using it. You know it has to go on your pin!
So what do you do if you want to use a stock photo that has been used before?
There are ways to make it look different than everyone else’s. It will still have the same url or code, though, so the chances of it going viral are less. But if you’re willing to take the risk, you can change the image a bit to make it look more like you.
Different Ways to Make a Stock Photo Stand Out:
- Crop the photo in a unique way
- Apply filters to the photo
- Put the photo on the edges or corners of the pin
- Add an overlay to the photo
Any way to make your photo look unique will be helpful, but remember, Pinterest may still be confused, because your pin with that photo will have the same code or url as all the other pins with that same stock photo.
How Can I Make Sure My Pin Is Unique?
There are other ways to make sure your pin looks different from everyone else’s and stands out on Pinterest as well. Even if you use the same photo as someone else, you can still make your pin look different by following some of these tricks:
- Avoid using faces
- Avoid using images of people
- Use light colored photos
- Create colorful pins
- Use bold colors – they perform the best
- Use lots of white space; especially for your headlines
- Use black and white lettering in your headlines
- Use fonts that pair well together – certain fonts compliment each other; do a google search to find out which ones work well together
- Keep your pins from appearing over-crowded
- Keep in mind that dark colored photos on a dark background don’t do as well.
Above all else, don’t copy someone else’s brand or look! Copying someone else is a great big no-no, but more importantly, it won’t help your pins to stand out at all. You will just blend in and start looking like everyone else on Pinterest. And then no one will pay any attention to you or your blog.
Make it yours! Be creative! That’s the fun part of making pins!!
Step #2: Create Multiple Pins for the Same Post
Why? Because people like variety! If you create multiple pins for the same post, people can choose which pin they want to share or save. This helps your pins to go viral because they share the ones they like the best.
Another reason why you should create multiple pins for the same post? Because if you keep sharing the same pin over and over again, Pinterest will see it as spam. Plus, every pin has a “shelf life”. Once a pin has lost its “freshness”, people will move on. So it’s always good to have multiple pins for every post.
A good number of pins to have is three to five per post.
How Do I Display All of My Pins in My Post?
You don’t. Well, you can; some people do, but I recommend that you don’t.
Some bloggers will put all five pins in their post, but ‘hide’ them from view. That way, when the reader clicks save on Pinterest, he or she can choose which pin to save. But this is not good for your website. Too many images can slow it down.
So what I do is update the pins when I update my post. I switch out the old pins with newer, fresher ones. This keeps my pins from getting too old.
When you create multiple pins, another good thing to remember is to schedule your pins to go out at different times. Some bloggers have pinned all of their pins at the same time to Pinterest and have seen increased traffic with this strategy.
But the best way to do it is to schedule them at different times. You need to pin to the most relevant board first, and then to your other boards a few days later. The last board you should pin to is your blog board.
Remember the Rule of 3
Vary how you pin your pins. Pin the same pin to a different board three days after pinning it to the first board, and then wait three more days before pinning it to another board. Don’t pin the same pin to three different boards on the same day.
You can re-pin the same pin to the same board, but you need to wait at least three months before doing it.
How Do I Create So Many Pins for the Same Post?
It’s pretty easy to do if you think like your reader. What would you want to know, if you were reading this post? What questions would you want answered?
And then use those questions as your headlines.
Create multiple headlines, or titles, for your pins doing this. Switch up your titles. Have a different call to action on each pin. “Read this”, “Click Here”, “Get this now”, are all catchy, good call to actions.
Step #3: Remember that Headlines Are So Important
Headlines, taglines and titles draw people in. Sure, Pinterest is a visual search engine. But Pinterest looks at your image, your headlines and your descriptions.
Don’t forget to put yourself in your readers’ shoes: what would you want to know? Use that as your headline.
Some headlines that have gone viral are: How to Hit 1,000,000 Visitors in a Year of Blogging, How to Prepare Your Home After Baby, and 30 Montessori Activities.
When creating your viral headline, be sure to include your call to action! Use who, what when, where, why, or how in your title. Don’t put it all on one line either – space it out. Make some text bigger and some text smaller.
Mix it up!
Big, bold fonts go well with smaller, thin fonts.
And remember, “how to”, “steps”, and “tips” are all super catchy.
Step #4: Use Popular Keywords in Your Pin Description
Why? Because keywords lets Pinterest know what your topic is all about, why people should pin it, and what category it should go in.
When people view a pin, Pinterest feeds them a whole bunch of other “similar” pins. You want your pin to appear in that feed. Your description is what gets it there.
Keywords are also used for searching. Pinterest is a search engine. If your description says “Pinterest strategies are important to have if you are using Pinterest for business”, and your keywords are ‘Pinterest strategy’ and ‘using Pinterest for business’, then every time someone types one of those phrases into search, your pin will appear.
Is There a Formula for Creating My Pin Descriptions?
Yes! There sure is!
Put your keywords in complete sentences or use them to tell a story. This makes it easier to read.
And then at the end of your description, choose three keywords to follow the description with a hashtag. Don’t go crazy on hashtags. This isn’t Instagram.
How Do I Know What to Use as My Keywords?
Pinterest gives them to you!
Use the search bar in Pinterest to pick out your keywords. Type your topic or what you think your keyword should be into the search bar, and then see what words pop up in the colored blocks underneath the search bar.
Choose a relevant word from those blocks and click again. Keep clicking until Pinterest doesn’t give you any more. Then you know you have your keywords.
How Can I Be Sure My Keywords Are the Right Ones?
Look for popular keywords. Some keywords are popular and some are generic.
Check how other people are wording things. Search for other pins in your topic and see what headlines and keywords they are using. See how many times their pins have been saved.
And I recommend using a mixture of longtail keywords and short keywords. Longtail are longer phrases, such as ‘prepare your home after baby’ and short keywords are one or two words, such as ‘blogging tips’. Try to use one longtail and two short in every description.
My Pin Went Viral!! Now What?
But you are not done yet!!
After your pin goes viral, you have a lot of work to do! You don’t want to lose that traffic!!
The first thing you need to do is create more pins for the same post. Quickly! And then get them out as fast as you can – without being spammy. Remember the Rule of 3.
Then you need to create more posts around that same topic. We call these ‘sister posts’. They are posts that expand on whatever that first post talked about. They go in deeper.
And remember to make the pins for those posts go viral too!
Do all of this as quickly as you can.
You want to keep your readers coming back for more of your stuff!!
Key Take Aways:
- You can increase your blog traffic by creating a viral pin.
- Avoid using stock photos if at all possible – they make it hard for Pinterest to categorize your pin.
- If you do use stock photos, change them so that they reflect you and your brand.
- Create multiple pins for the same blog post.
- Put yourself in the reader’s shoes when creating headlines – what would you want to know, if you were them?
- Choose your keywords carefully and use them in complete sentences or to tell a story when creating your pin description.
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