How to leverage the Power of Pinterest to Grow your Online Business

Pinterest is one of the largest search engines in the world; its unique demographics and visual content make it ideal for growing a business offering digital services, digital products and physical goods that can be shipped worldwide. 

‘Oh I saw it on Pinterest!’

‘I got this image from Pinterest.’

‘I did a Pinterest thing this weekend!’

All phrases I hear people say and see people write ALL the time. The truth is that you found an idea on Pinterest, but that idea was not created by Pinterest. 

It was created by a Pinterest user or creator and shared and optimized on Pinterest’s search engine so that when you wanted that idea for a cake, party decoration or business affirmation print out – you got what you needed. 

Pinterest is a vastly misunderstood and underestimated growth engine for your business. 

I’ve been sharing our real time Pinterest results in my weekly newsletter and folks are loving it. Download my free resource called 77 Story Prompts to be added to my list!

I will be so bold as to say if you are: 

  • A blogger or content creator of any kind
  • Sell digital products like courses or workshops etc. 
  • Sell digital services that do not need to be carried out in person (but for eg. can be done over Zoom or are on evergreen funnels)
  • Sell physical products that can be shipped anywhere and have an online shop

… Then you need to start leveraging Pinterest for your business. 

How to leverage the power of Pinterest to grow your online business

Why am I so in Love with Pinterest? 

Pinterest is incredible for long term organic traffic generation

Well, like blogging, it’s a form of marketing that I just can’t quit. I was invited to Pinterest’s platform back in 2011 or so, when it was still invite only and the user base was almost entirely bloggers. 

In the last ten years, I grew DIY Passion using Pinterest strategies that still work to this day. 

And the beauty of it is that I can create a month’s Pinterest content for that site in about half a day. And then I walk away. There’s no need to sit and go live or push buttons. It’s definitely a hands-off platform that needs time and space to do its magic. 

(Unlike the hungry Zuckerberg beasts of Facebook and Instagram where they want you to be ON ALL THE TIME). 

I was able to monetize that traffic in a meaningful way when I created my first mini, blog-related funnel project. You can read about how I built my first organic lead generation funnel on DIY Passion here. 

Pinterest wants you to leave the platform

Speaking of being on all the time, Pinterest is NOT a form of social media; which means it’s not there to suck you in and keep you there. 

The primary function of Pinterest is as a visual search tool to help you curate an experience and learn or gain knowledge. 

The head honchos at Pinterest consistently say that they want you to find something you love on Pinterest and go THERE to see it – as in CLICK OFF THE PLATFORM. 

Instantly you can appreciate how that is like gold for anyone who sells anything digital. Pinterest makes it easy for you to invite new leads to visit your site. 

Note: Some recent additions to Pinterest – like Story and Ideas pins fly in the face of this general notion because they do not seem to allow embedded URLs. I’m watching this trend closely to adapt my strategy to use them – but haven’t landed yet. 

From a REPURPOSING standpoint

This is kind of minor, but Pinterest’s optimal visual ratios are the same as that for Instagram Stories and TikTok – which means if you are creating Pinterst friendly content – you are able to reshare it elsewhere. 

I’m always a fan of saving time and energy. 

Pinterest is an incredible lead generating platform

When I first launched my solo consulting business, I had approximately 10-12 blog articles on my site that I was starting to run through a Pinterest strategy. I used a set-it-and-forget-it approach. 

And well, I forgot it when I went to change my URL and redirect all my content to my new fully-built out corporation. 

Well, what would you know – I booked TWO 1:1 high ticket clients with about 10-12 blog posts and a Pinterest account that I’d only serviced for 3 months. 

That means, I had a few hundred pins pointing to that site and those blogs and I booked more than $10,000 of business JUST FROM THAT. 

So imagine what happens when you put actual effort into the platform??!

Pinterest sends social signals to other search engines and sites

Now this is no longer certifiable, but anecdotally, it still rings true. That if you have a Pin that is ranking on Pinterest or picking up steam, other search sites will give that post more favor. 

This is why, for example, when you Google a question, sometimes a Pin turns up in the Google search results!

Note: This used to happen WAY more frequently. However the big Google algorithm update in 2017 stopped it from happening as much. It seems the people at Google didn’t want the top search result to be a Pin! So they changed the algorithm to make it harder to rank that way – but it still happens and it’s still a social signal. 

Pinterest challenges you to tell very short Stories!!

I work with my clients on developing their Story muscles and lens and Pinterest is an incredible way to do that! I like to think of a Pin as telling ONE STORY in a fraction of a sentence. 

Some of my best performing pins of ALL TIME are Story based hooks using phrases like : 

  • How I did x and learned y
  • What I learned from x years doing y
  • How my first attempt at x failed

All Story based concepts that do really well on Pinterest

Pinterest ads are a GREAT and AFFORDABLE alternative to Facebook and Instagram ads

I’ll preface this by saying that I have taken a Mastermind course in Facebook and Instagram ads and run funnels that way. 

I’ve also taken in-depth Pinterest Mastermind courses and even had a Pinterest coach – and I’ve run Pinterest ad funnels too. 

And Pinterest ad funnels are much less expensive to run – and offer a few lingering benefits that the FB/IG funnels do not. 

I can’t tell you what the average ROAS will be for a Facebook ad campaign versus Pinterest, because it really depends so much on how you set it up and what conversions and audience you are tracking – but I can tell you that if and when you invest in Pinterest ads, you will likely have trailing ROI after the campaign has ended. 

Think about it this way, if you run Facebook ads for two weeks to a particular audience – once the campaign is over, Facebook yanks those ads from the feed. They are not searchable or findable anymore. 

I mean, have you ever been served an FB ad and then wanted to go back and FIND it AGAIN? And you use the meager search bar in FB and just get frustrated and you never see that ad again and can’t click on it? 

No? Just me? Okay. HA!

Well, with Pinterest ads, that is unlikely to happen. 

If you run paid Promoted Pins (that’s what ads are called in Pinterest) for two weeks, other people will be Pinning or Saving your Ads for that entire time (if you’ve targeted them right). 

Once your two weeks is up? Those saved Pins? They STILL EXIST in the search engine and will be finable and discoverable by anyone who searches for terms you used to create them. 

So in effect, what I’m saying is that you will pay for ads for two weeks and people will still be able to find your promoted content months or years later. 

Next Steps

Want to take Next Steps with your Story and include Pinterest in your Strategy? 

Then you’ll want to hop into my subscription Content Strategy program called Stories for a Year!

**Just updated to include a Walk Through of my Daily Pinterest Creation Strategy AND the high converting Pinterest Templates I use in my businesses every single month!*

For way less than the cost of a social media manager or a fancy marketing plan, you will have direct access to curated content plans and strategies to help you find, tell and share your Story and your Business online with ease and …. AUTHENTICITY!

Stories for a Year is a subscription program and each month you’re in the program, your strategy gets bigger and better based on what you’re building!

Each month you get: 

  • Monthly long form content plan – great for blogs, vidoes, podcasts and more
  • WEEKLY curated social media plans – so you know exactly what to create and when
  • Story Strategy Planner – so you know which types of content will work on which platforms, Including PINTEREST!

Then you also get access to: 

  • My Content Strategy Mini Guide so you understand the nuances of certain platforms and can start to leverage them strategically – like Pinterst, LinkedIn, Instagram Stories and more
  • My four part Story Strategy Workshop – that was done live in spring 2021 and is not available as a replay anywhere else!

Quarterly Strategy Workshop Bonuses : Unlock Multiple Masterclasses on things like:

  • Repurposing content
  • Creating content workflows
  • Pinterest strategy
  • Mainstream Media and PR for your business
  • Writing Sales copy 
  • MORE – we are adding to the program every single month!

The Rest of the Story is a project of love and commitment to showing up on this site every day for 90 days; sharing honest opinions, thoughts and observations. Comments are welcome.

Erin Trafford Incorporated is located on sacred land that has been the site of human activity for over 12,000 years. We are in Mi’kma’ki, the ancestral and unceded territory of the Mi’kmaq People, and we acknowledge them as the past, present, and future caretakers of this  land.

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