Pinterest is a great tool for generating traffic, leads and email subscribers. And the question that worries any beginner is how to get Pinterest followers fast. I would add here another question which most of you are not asking because you assume more followers = more traffic from Pinterest. This is not necessarily true, but more on this later in the post.
Pinterest SEO can be used for improving the performance of pins.
You’ve probably learned from me by now, Pinterest is between a search engine and a social media platform. The social part of Pinterest is mostly presented by followers (even though you can communicate through Pinterest using comments and direct messages), the activity of Pinterest users is content discovery.
How do I get more followers on Pinterest [2021 Guide]?
1. Pinterest Follow Button
Pinterest has a wonderful widget that allows you to include a follow button as many times as possible and everywhere.
Just some ideas:
- In your sidebar, along with other social media buttons;
- In your sidebar as a stand-alone Pinterest follow button or Pinterest Profile widget (I’ll show you in a few moments where you can find the official page with the code for this widget).
- In the footer of your website;
- In the header of your website;
- As links to your profile (an example of a link you need https://www.pinterest.com/anastasiablogger/) at the end of your emails if you have an email list;
So, to add the official Pinterest widget which looks like on the screenshot below, you need to select Profile option on the Pinterest widget builder page.
You could use a paid plugin like Milotree which creates a sticky or pop-up banner with a link to your Pinterest profile. Or, if you want to avoid plugins because they, in general, can make your site heavier, you can replicate what this plugin does like I did on my second blog, by a simple text and a button (you can create any design for your button image even in Canva and upload to your site as an image). The button can be simply linked to your Pinterest profile page:
Don’t miss a chance to give a link to your Pinterest profile in your other social profiles. For example, on my personal FB profile I give links to my other social media including Pinterest:
2. Promote Particular Boards
If your blog covers various topics, some of your potential Pinterest followers would prefer to follow a particular board instead of your entire account.
For example, on my blog anastasiablogger.com I have a ton of content that could be interesting for beginner bloggers. But I also have a lot of content dedicated to healthy eating. As you can imagine, people that are interested in blogging tips would prefer to follow my board Pinterest Marketing tips (by the way, follow the board if you are looking for more Pinterest tips!).
You need to use Pinterest’s official Board widget and then insert the code into any place in your content or under your relevant posts.
3. Be present on Pinterest daily
One of the things I teach in my Pinterest SEO Traffic Secrets course is about manual pinning. When I say pinning, I actually mean physically being present on the platform – either on a desktop or on your Pinterest app.
There is no other proof than testing on multiple accounts and seeing a pattern: if you schedule all your pinning and don’t show up on Pinterest for months, your traffic will tank.
Some of the activities on top of manually pinning on a regular basis, that don’t come to your mind as you are mostly using Pinterest to promote your own content:
• Scrolling down the Smart Feed and saving content from other sites manually to your relevant boards;
• Saving pins from your website or other blogs manually;
• Checking your “Activity” tab – these are original pins created from your website by Pinterest users.
Note: some of these pins in the Activity tab can be your own Tailwind-generated pins. It makes sense to find pins created by other users in this tab and then repin them to your boards.
• Following Pinterest’s recommendations (the platform will send you notifications with recommended pins or boards – so just go check them out and save or follow if you find them relevant to what your account is about). Click on the red notification button:
You’ll also see in the notifications who saved your pins – you can definitely engage with those by repining, liking or commenting! These are your own pins and this engagement is helping your account overall.
Comment on your Popular Pins
One of the things content creators often perceive as being spammy is commenting on your own pins. What’s interesting, Pinterest doesn’t mind if you as the pin creator, create an initial engagement on your pin, you can be the first one to comment on a pin to spark the conversation.
Just make sure your comments don’t look spammy. For example, adding a comment with a link to your post looks bad and actually doesn’t make any sense because your pin is linked to your site anyway.
Join On-Topic Group Boards
Joining group boards helps you reach an audience that’s not yet following your account. You can find relevant groups in PinGroupie.
Note: As of 2019, it’s not recommended joining large group boards that allow pins from any niche. Those boards are not helping Pinterest understand what your pins are about and are giving confusing keyword context to your pins. If you don’t understand what I’m talking here about, it might be worth reading my post about evaluating boards before you take a decision to join or leave a group board.
Create Your Own Group Boards
One of the ways some accounts are getting extra followers is by creating their own group boards. I have this on the list because I see some people find this useful.
You can set in your group boards rules that to join, collaborators have to first follow you. Of course, no guarantees they will not unfollow you a month later, and of course, you’ll never know because like other platforms, Pinterest only notifies you when someone follows but doesn’t send notifications about unfollows.
For me personally, it didn’t work because managing your own group board takes time. I tried with two of my boards and eventually I had to close one of them because people wouldn’t follow the rules, spam my boards with affiliate links or their products. Too much trouble, in my opinion, for a small win of a few followers.
How do I grow my Pinterest followers? With New Content!
One of the ways I find particularly effective in growing followers might be surprising to you because it doesn’t involve any Pinterest followers hack or trick. It all comes down to old school quality content, the more content you can produce for Pinterest, the more the platform will like your account and show it to new audiences.
Good news is that for Pinterest, a new pin for your old post is actually considered as “fresh” content. This means you don’t even have to create new posts every day.
What I personally do when my account slows down, I create 2-3 new pins for a post which used to drive me good traffic. On Pinterest, it’s usually the volume game. You have to shoot 100 times to hit your target with 10 patrons. If you only shoot 10 times, you’ll hit your target just once and will complain that your competitors are more successful. If they are, that’s because they tried more times. I can almost guarantee that they don’t have any other Pinterest hack except sending a ton of new content to Pinterest.
Take Advantage of Pinterest Trends
If you didn’t realize that yet, people come to Pinterest to save ideas for the near future, and so Pinterest content is often seasonal or related to holidays.
If you can make a connection in any way between your content and holidays like Christmas, Thanksgiving, Eid, Hanukah, Valentine’s Day, etc., make sure you have those boards on your account.
Seasonal traffic spikes are the foundation of my Pinterest success. If you are not yet planning your content a couple of months in advance for Pinterest, you might be missing out on at least 50% of all traffic potential for your website. Or maybe even more.
Following trends on Pinterest is so important that I spent a week at the beginning of this year creating my own Pinterest Trends Marketing Plan. You can get it here.
Leverage Pinterest SEO + Hashtags
I can’t emphasize strongly enough how important Pinterest SEO is for your traffic volume. If you do everything right in terms of SEO, Pinterest will start showing your pins to users that looked for similar keywords or saved pins to boards with the same keywords.
When SEO is done right, Pinterest will actively show your content to new audiences. And if your content is good, and if you have Pinterest follow buttons or board widgets on your site, the same users will follow you to see more useful content on that topic.
Hashtags are also important as they are involved in Pinterest SEO and help your pins to show up in the feed of users that are not your followers.
Use Keyword in Your Profile
One of the ways people look for authority in their niche or topic is filtering search results on Pinterest by “People”. When you do a couple of searches this way, you’ll notice that people with optimized profile names show up higher than the others.
This is how my account ranks for the keyword “Blogging for beginners:
You can see that I also target two more keywords: “Pinterest Marketing” and “Blogging Tips”:
PRO TIP: If you try to edit your profile name and it tells you only 30 characters are allowed, try to do the same on your smartphone using the Pinterest app. It should allow you to save a profile name a lot longer. I can’t promise this workaround will work forever, so use it while you can 🙂
Learn What Your Followers Like
The best way to use your Pinterest analytics is by checking which posts and pins get more traffic and saves.
When you see some types of pins or some topic gets more traction, keep creating more “fresh” pins and new posts around that topic. Stick to what works and it will work even better. People will see you as an expert in that specific topic and will follow you for sure.
Automate To Pin at the Best Time
One of the key factors in your Pinterest success is pinning at the right time. You see, if you save content when the majority of your followers sleep because you are in a different timezone, they will wake up in the morning and unfortunately, your pins will NOT be waiting for them in the feed. Because in the following feed Pinterest shows pins in chronological order. So they will wake up and go to work, at the end of the day they come home, open Pinterest and scroll through the feed. By that time, your pins will be at least 12 hours old for them.
I live in Europe, the majority of my users are in the US. What I do to solve this problem? I use Tailwind scheduler in addition to manual pinning to cover the peak activity on Pinterest when it’s night in my part of the world.
Don’t Delete Your Boards
If you want to keep your following numbers high, don’t experiment deleting boards. A lot of users are following only particular boards and not your entire account. If you delete one of the boards that has its own followers, they will not be shown as your account followers anymore.
I will not go into detail here explaining why someone would want to delete a board, but I’ll just give you a simple fix: make a board Private or choose the option to Archive it. Both ways are safe as all board followers stay on your account.
Follow Followers of Your Competitors (if you have time for this!)
One of the less effective tactics on Pinterest is following people in hopes they will follow you back. I’m 100% sure this doesn’t help you as much as all the previously mentioned activities, but if you have some extra time, you can try to follow active users that are following your competitors.
To find your strong competitors, just search for some of the keywords you cover in your content and filter results by “People”:
Go through user profiles one by one. You want to make sure you follow people who are genuine (not bots), who are active on Pinterest right now (not abandoned accounts) and saving content in your niche often. Following anyone and everyone is a bad idea because bots or abandoned accounts will not follow you back anyway, plus they would not engage with your pins which is making things worse for your account.
How Does Pinterest Followers Work?
On Pinterest, it’s better to have a lower but more engaged following. That’s because Pinterest will decide whether your pins are good or not, based on the early engagement of a small portion of your followers with your pins. So, your success on Pinterest depends quite heavily on how followers engage with your new content.
See what Pinterest’s representative has to say about the importance of Followers and especially their quality rather than quantity (starts at 31:35, I’ve already set the timer for you anyway):
Use Promoted Pins (If you Have a Budget)
This might work well for Pinterest marketers who promote brands or want to sell products. If you have an ad budget, you can start advertising your content on Pinterest as low as $0.1 per click.
Advertising option is only available to Business Accounts, just like Pinterest Analytics. If you are using a personal account on Pinterest, you might want to switch to a Business account. It’s free and easy to make.
I can honestly tell you though that a good Pinterest SEO strategy can bring you a lot more traffic and followers than paid clicks from Pinterest.
Help Users Share Your Content on Pinterest
Not all the users who land on your website and like your content will instantly think of saving your pins to their Pinterest boards.
I use all the ways to remind my readers that they can save images from my site:
– I have social sharing buttons at the end of each post;
– I use Social Warfare to add hover Pin it buttons to each image (this plugin has a free and paid version, you can start with the free version and later upgrade if you need);
– I ask them in the text of my post (usually by the end of it, right next to my main pin) to save this pin, and I even give them an idea of how the board to which they save, should be called.
Make Your Pin Design Stand Out
Pinterest is a visual search engine, right? People who come to Pinterest, are naturally more sensitive to visual information than others. So try not to hurt their sense of beauty with your pins 🙂
Also, when users scroll down the Smart Feed, you have less than a second to grab their attention with your image. Your image graphics must have high resolution, use a good color scheme and a captivating text overlay.
It’s hard to underestimate how important your pin design is for the overall success on Pinterest. And if your pin design sucks, users will not save them to their boards. Who wants ugly pins on their boards, especially on public boards? I don’t!
If you want to learn the basics of pin design, I wrote how to create quality pins here.
A/B Testing Your Pins
Sometimes I get this question and it makes me smile: “Can I create more than one pin for the same post, isn’t it considered duplicate content?”
I smile because Pinterest actually recommends creating AT LEAST 5 pins for each post. My best guess is they want to grow their numbers of “fresh pins” and they understand that it’s easier to create 5 new pins than one new post like the one you are reading now for example.
So Pinterest will be happy if you create multiple pins per post and this gives you a chance to A/B test your pin design, text overlays, and keywords safely. No worries about duplicate content!
Just make sure you don’t get too spammy by saving multiple pins to the same webpage in a single day. Create pins in bulk and then space them with intervals in Tailwind or do it manually, giving Pinterest one “fresh” pin per day or per week.
A/B testing your pins helps you understand which pin style works best for your audience and then replicate your success over and over again.
What Is A Lot Of Followers On Pinterest?
A good question to ask after reading all the tips in this post :)I honestly can’t tell you that more followers is always better. Quality of your following base is extremely important.
I already mentioned that if your followers don’t show Pinterest good early engagement on your new pins, those pins will not be shown to larger audiences and so they will not go viral, will not bring much traffic and also will not help you increase Pinterest followers numbers.
Now that Pinterest shows Reach of any account, you can go through several accounts of your competitors and see that reach often doesn’t correspond to the size of the follower base.
I know that some old accounts with an enormous following (we are talking over 500,000 followers) have a hard time on Pinterest in the last few years when Pinterest SEO and relevance of pins is so much more important than the number of followers.
So be careful with your wishes 🙂 When you work on growing your Pinterest followers, keep in mind you want only active users genuinely interested in your content. With a small army of 500 fans, you can get higher reach than an account with 50,000 followers in the same niche.
Don’t believe me? Look at these random examples in Yoga niche I found in 30 seconds.
The account with over 600k followers has a reach about 5 times lower than an account that has 50k followers (more than 10 times lower following number).
However, I’m not advocating for not working on your follower growth. Not at all. Highly engaged followers can skyrocket your Pinterest traffic. So, implement everything you learned in this post and you’ll see the results.
Additional benefits of having a large following on Pinterest are the same as on any other platform:
- you establish your authority and expertise in a topic or niche;
- impressive following numbers help you pitch sponsors and brands;
- you can cross-promote to your followers on different platforms, you can ask your fans from one platform to follow you on a new one;
- high-quality followers are also your friends as they share your interests or values, you can always ask them for support or even to help you validate your new ideas.
Let me know if you have any questions, in the comments below.
Did you find this post useful? Save THIS PIN below to your Pinterest Marketing board and check it later at any time!
- Pinterest Follow Button
- Promote Particular Boards
- Be present on Pinterest daily
- Comment on your Popular Pins