If you think Pinterest is a fluffy, confusing or unnecessary social media network for authors, think again.
According to Shareaholic, Facebook and Pinterest are the top social media networks for driving traffic to websites.Facebook and Pinterest are the top social media networks for driving traffic Click To Tweet
And Pinterest drives more traffic than Twitter.
According to Mashable:
Just look at the chart below from Shareaholic.
After a huge surge in early 2011, Pinterest continues to attract interest and drive traffic and sales.
(Source: Google Trends)
According to Mashable, the number of total unique visitors since May 2011 has increased by 2702%. That’s incredible. Here is their their infographic with compiled user demographics.
Over time, the top boards have covered the following topics: hair, weddings, quotes, recipes, home, and Christmas.
The top boards make sense since 68.2% of users are women,, and 31.8% are men. This is a huge improvement since the earlier days when 80% of all users were women.
But don’t let that fact dissuade you from the importance of interest to authors and bloggers. Check out these statistics from Business Insider:
Pinterest drives 7.10% of Web traffic that sites receive, second only to Facebook (21.25%), and leagues ahead of other social sites like Twitter, Reddit, StumbleUpon and LinkedIn. In the first quarter of 2014, the company drove 48.36% more traffic than it did at the end of 2013.
So have I convinced you of the importance of this social media network yet?
Pinterest and Your Blog
I spend quite a bit of time (some people think too much time) creating images for my blog posts. The image I create for the top of the blog post is compatible with image sizes for Twitter and Facebook.
What you don’t see – and won’t see unless you click the Pinterest social media share button at the bottom of each post – is that I create a second image just for Pinterest.
I easily spend at least 45 minutes creating these two images, but it’s time well spent. You see, one of my pinboards is for my blog and the images that I pin from my blog to Pinterest tend to be my most frequently repinned images.
Take this image, for example. It was fairly simple yet it was my most popular pinned image that week.
And Pinterest ranks high in terms of referral traffic to my blog. However, in my case my analytics bucked the trend. Twitter is my top referral source for traffic to my website.
The second social media network that drives traffic to my website is Facebook. And the third network is Pinterest. These numbers make sense for me because I focus a lot of my energy on Twitter.
I’m not trying to disprove the above studies; my only point here is that Pinterest for me is among the top three social media networks driving traffic to my website, and therefore it’s important for me to have an active presence on it.
57 Boards Every Author Should Have on Pinterest
When I speak with authors about Pinterest, they are often perplexed about how to use this social media network.
A common question I hear, “What kind of images should I collect?”
You can use these suggestions as a starting point for building your Pinterest unique presence and establishing your sense of style.
Fiction Author Pinboard Suggestions
- A pinboard for your blog images
- Quotes about reading and books
- A collection of your favorite books
- Quotes about the joy of reading
- Fun, funky, unusual bookstores
- Libraries from around the world
- Images of your favorite literary characters
- Humorous sayings about the life of writers
- Quotes from authors about life or writing advice
- A collection of book covers from your colleagues
- Images of your favorite authors
- Examples of bookshelves you love
- Images from your favorite writers conferences
- Visual writing prompts
- Images that portray the cities and countries where your characters live and travel
- Images of the type of clothing your characters wear
- Images of the type of jewelry your characters might wear
- Images of your character’s favorite meals
- Create images with quotes from your books
You may want to check my Pinterest account, which has 62 boards and 4877 pins for more ideas. You’ll find pinboards about social media, which reflect the topics of my nonfiction books and blog.
In addition, I have boards related to writing and books, pinboards related to a future novel, and some pinboards I created just for fun.
Pinterest Suggestions for Romance Authors
- Create a pinboard for all of your book covers
- A collection of sexy jewelry your characters wear
- Images of sexy clothing your characters might wear
- A pinboard of dreamy picnic settings
- Images of sexy heels and dresses
- Photos of actors and models you feel are sexy
- Pinboard of sexy hairstyles
- A collection of sexy lingerie
- Images of chocolate
- Images of models or characters who inspire your writing
- Pinboard of all your blog images
For more ideas, check out Tawny Weber’s Pinterest account.
Pinboard Suggestions for Nonfiction Writers
- Pinboard of all your blog images
- Images from other bloggers you admire
- Images from blogs where you write guest posts
- Images that portray the niche you write about
- If you write about diabetes, creative a pinboard of recipes for diabetics
- If you write about hiking, create pinboards for boots, hats, sunglasses, tents, trails, etc.
- If you write about the importance of exercise, create pinboards of walking paths, workout routines, yoga clothing, etc.
- Whatever your niche might be, create boards filled with images that inform your readers
- Collect quotes that are informative and reflect your specialty
For an additional source of inspiration, check out Lisa Tener’s Pinterest account.
Pinboard Suggestions for Poets
- Collect images that provide you with visual inspiration for your writing
- Create pinboards of photographs you might have taken from the beach or your walks in the woods
- Overlay favorite lines of your poetry on beautiful images
- Create a pinboard of your favorite poets
- Create a pinboard of book covers from your favorite poets
- Create a pinboard of quotes from authors that inspire you
- Images that captivate your imagination
- Images of the natural environment that inspire you to write
Pinboards for Picture Book Authors and Illustrators
- Create a new pinboard for every book you write and include all or most of your images
- Collect images of bedtime reading rituals
- Create images or collect images you find that portray the importance of reading to children
- Promote diversity in children’s literature
- Create a pinboard for images from your blog and elsewhere on your website
- Create images that reflect the topics you cover in your books. If you write about pigs and pies, create a pinboard of images of pies and recipes. If you write about marine life, create pinboards of sea turtles, seashells, creatures of the sea, ocean beauties, dolphins, etc.
- Create pinboards of resources for teachers and parents
- Created pinboard that reflects the importance of literacy. Images can include infographics.
- Create a pinboard of book covers from the books your colleagues and editors write.
Look at this pinboard for ideas from author and illustrator Elizabeth B Martin.
What types of boards do you have on your Pinterest account?
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Haven’t yet understood Goodreads? Get The Author’s Guide to Goodreads.
When it comes to social media, I love guides that go beyond telling me what I SHOULD do and instead tell me HOW to do it. Frances Caballo’s The Authors Guide to Goodreads is the most useful guide I’ve read on how to make Goodreads work for you as a reader and a writer. Caballo holds your hand through setting up your Author Dashboard and linking to your Amazon and social media accounts. She covers the steps for starting a Discussion Group, uploading images, and running a Goodreads Giveaway. Goodreads has more than 40 million members. Caballo shows you how to reach them. – Helen Sedwick, Author of Self-Publisher’s Legal Handbook: The Step-by-Step Guide to the Legal Issues of Self-Publishing
About the Author: Frances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. You can receive a free copy of her book Twitter Just for Writers by signing up for her newsletter. Connect with Frances on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Google+