So, gone are the days where I urge anyone who’ll listen to stay away from hashtags on Pinterest!
It has been announced that hashtags are now supported on Pinterest - so I wanted to take you through what this means for you and how you can implement my 5 step formula to use them effectively in your Pinterest strategy to get your content found.
The official stance from Tiffany Black - Pinterest’s Head of Content Business Development and Corporate Development discusses the new direction:
“It is true that In the past, I think that we were dissuading people from using hashtags. We are actually changing that such that you can and are often benefited in the future by using hashtags. As far as best practices go, the rule of thumb is use authentic hashtags but don’t keyword stuff essentially. So I know on other platforms you can often see people putting 50 or 100 hashtags on something.
It’s not the volume of hashtags that’s really useful, it’s actually making sure you are using the hashtags that people will likely be searching for. So not trying to do like 100 because actually doing too many will decrease rank in some capacity because we will think it is possibly spam.
So I would say we haven’t figured out exactly what the right number is. I don’t think that we will probably come out with an exact number but you know keeping it reasonable and using ones that are relevant to the content and authentic is the way to go”.
How to use hashtags on Pinterest
So, what Pinterest is saying is that the new hashtag integration is in it’s early stages but you should think about incorporating a few keywords (1-5) into your pin description and keep them relevant.
Start by implementing the 5 step step formula (below) to determine the key takeaway for each piece of content and how it’s going to get found from your audience’s point of view.
FREE DOWNLOAD: Pinterest Hashtag Workbook
How to use the 5 step formula
Step #1: Key Content Selection
Begin by selecting your 10 best pieces of content (research this through Pinterest analytics - most repinned, clickthrough rate etc). You may know this already as they may be the pieces of content that get the most comments, subscribers and sales.
Action Step: Once you have your hashtags written down (the accompanying workbook makes this super simple - download it here) outline the key takeaway for each type of content.
- What will your audience get by clicking on your image?
- Will they learn how to do something, be educated in some way, inspired to take action?
Step #2: Keyword Research
Once you have each piece of content written down and #1 takeaway outlined, hop on over to Pinterest to do some keyword research.
Pinterest makes it easy for you as when you search for something it gives you popular keywords.
For example - this search for sales funnels shows me that if I were to write a post about sales funnels it would be a great idea to create an infographic and/or a template for that post.
Action step: Get creative and research keywords and phrases to discover what the most popular searches come up that relate to your content.
Step #3: Hashtag Branding
As Pinterest’s hashtag feature is in it’s early stages - it gives you and your business a chance to build your brand using hashtags! By this I mean - create your own hashtag!
By creating your own hashtag you can keep track of when it’s used, who uses it, how it’s being used - plus it’s a great way to build brand authority.
Think about how Rising Tide Society have used this for Instagram! They’ve created a whole movement out of their hashtag #communityovercompetition.
Action Step: Think of hashtags that embody your brand values and how you’re unique - and start using it on every piece of content you put out!
Step #4: Content Implementation
Alrighty then - now we’re cookin’! We have our 10 best pieces of content, with 1-5 relevant hashtags and we’ve created our one-of-a-kind branded hashtag to add to each piece of content!
Now we need to get creating.
Firstly - it’s important to establish that you have a consistent style when creating your content. By this I mean - you have the same style, colours and typography for all content.
I suggest you getting a brand style guide created so you know EXACTLY what fonts, colours and design elements you’ll incorporate into your messaging (this is for all content you put out - not just for Pinterest).
It will keep you from going what I call “Canva crazy” - which will eliminate design overwhelm, keep your brand professional, and will build authority and recognisability.
Ok so now you have a consistent brand you’ll want to create your template. I use Adobe InDesign but you can do this simply in Canva.
The main reason to do this is to keep your workflow super simple, save time and create a consistent brand! By having a template all you need to do is change the text, download & share away!
Step 1: Create a document in Canva with custom dimensions of 800 x 1200 px
Step 2: Upload a high-res image (I use Rosemary Watson’s stock library - but there are lots of other ones like Haute Chocolate or Wonderfelle Media. I suggest you invest in this as it makes your graphics pop and look original).
Step 3: Add a square box over top of the image and change the opacity to around 70%.
Step 4: Add your title - in your main font “How to…”
Step 5: Change one part of the title a different colour (a brand colour obviously)
Step 6: Download & share.
My designs have a slightly different structure as I have images where I can have my title around the picture - which I prefer.
Action Step: OK so now you've created your consistent brand and template you can now share on to Pinterest and incorporate those wonderful 1-5 hashtags you’ve selected PLUS your brand hashtag.
FREE DOWNLOAD: Pinterest Hashtag Workbook
Step #5: Review & Update
Set yourself a timeframe and test the image, hashtags, descriptions and update accordingly. If you can design 2 or 3 images that link back to the same content with different hashtags that’s even better. By A/B testing which image and hashtags get the most clickthroughs you can develop more content with those in mind in the future.
Remember to keep these 3 main points in your head when doing this:
1. You want to create content that delights to your audience
2. You want to research relevant keywords, phrases and hashtags that will get your amazing content found by your ideal audience
3. You want to create graphics that are visually on-brand and click worthy to get your tribe to click through and fall in love with you.
And you’re done!
I want you to take action & help you be accountable so let me know below WHEN you’ll be implementing this - and keep me posted on your progress!
I can’t wait to hear your success stories!
Now - TAKE ACTION! :)