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It's Pinterest, Not Brain Surgery - Part 1



 

About three years ago I think I invented Pinterest. Of course, that was in my mind...it never actually came out and became anything, but I thought of the actual idea that it would be great to save all the photos and links in one place and call it something cute. Pinterest is a great name for this fun, organizational tool - but I would have called it something else, like: PinIt, DoggyBagIt, iLikeIt, MySaves etc...

Pinterest seems to confuse some people, I think it's the name of the site and all the pretty colors everywhere. {smile} I've had friends and comments that say "I just don't get it!" Why do you think that is? Today I'll begin a short series on understanding and using Pinterest for your blog.

On the outside Pinterest is a simple concept that is easy to install and use daily. That is what we humans like best, ease of use and a reason to use it. Many of my commenters who said they didn't get it had not tried the interface yet...they had simply looked at the site, gotten flustered at the invitation at the start, and quickly let it defeat them.

Listen up! Don't let it frighten you away. Pinterest is seriously the best thing since sliced bread and extra hot grande lattes! Don't let all the amazing photos overwhelm you, they are yours for the picking pinning!

It's Pinterest, not brain surgery! All you have to do is sign up and they'll let you in and you poke around on a few people's boards and you'll get it. It is intuitive, you can edit your boards anytime, and don't forget you can use it to grow your business and/or blog.


How To Use Pinterest To Grow (business or blog)
  • Start small, but start strong. Once you pin something and others start pinning it too, it's out there. You cannot get it back. So if you are going to pin your own original photos, make sure they are pin worthy. For example: edit your photos, use Picnik, Photoshop or any of the plethora of photo editing software out there.  Make sure your photos are crisp and clear, that they portray what you want them to, and that they're blog worthy.
  • Pin it yourself - don't wait for your readers to pin your pretty pictures. Do it yourself and get yourself noticed.
  • Use graphics too. Adorable graphic ads are popping up on Pinterest now too, not just photos. If you know how, create "ads" for your posts, like "How To Make Pickles" could have a vintage basket of cucumbers and the words "How To Make Pickles". Here are some examples:

  • When you pin it yourself, you should describe underneath what it is. Most re-pinners don't want to take the time to rewrite the description, and this helps get exact information on what the pin is.


  • Get Pinspired! Let your pin boards do the work for you. Source ideas for crafts, home decorating, recipes and more - much more. Gather information at your fingertips and organize it on your boards.
  • Name your boards. Your boards can be labeled with your interests or into different subjects, such as color, location, rooms, styles, favorite things etc. I recently came across an amazing pinner who had so many in depth boards that were organized and pinned so beautifully I immediately got a bit jealous.
  • Images that you pin will link to their original source. That's the beauty of Pinterest. This is how you will be able to find that obscure recipe, or complicated hairstyle, or the picture perfect wedding without fear. The images will take you to the post or ad that they came from in the first place. That is so much easier than having a list of URLs in your notes!

More Pinterest thoughts in Part 2
Why use Pinterest?
Read our first post about Pinterest

42 comments:

  1. Thanks for doing this serious! Helpful!

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  2. Im glad you did this blog! You know, I have tried, but I just can't seem to get into Pinterest! I am one of those lame people. Although I have given myself the challenge of learning about blogging, just to keep mine alive; I am still a magazine page ripper outer! I know that is not really a real name of anything.

    I love to flip through magazines, feel the paper in my hands and rip out the pages I love. I think I will do a blog post about that soon!

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    1. Just wanted to say "Ditto"...except for the ripping the magazine pages out. I don't get that either! LOL I just checked out your blog page too...Beautiful!...Have a good day!

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    2. ... agree with above, I am also one of the good people that likes to hold a book in my hand, smell the pages, the Kindle just don't mentally and emotionally do it for me, as an architect student I hated cad, I just wanted to draw on an A0 drawing board and smell the ink, get it on my fingers BUT once I've started getting to grips with Pinetrest, once you see what's on offer, once you understand the vastness of the inspiration and the feel good aspect of seeing something grow in your mind that you have never visiualised but always thought about ... it is truly magical and inspiring ... try it! Really ♥

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  3. I started pinning stuff from my blog too. I use pinterest for personal use and not necessarily my blog but I do have the link on my blog. I might start breaking my boards up. For example, I can have one board for recipes and another board for Recipes on "my blog name". I hope everyone use these ideas.

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    1. You can also open a separate Pinterest account just for your blog - then you don't have to worry about your personal preferences mixing with your bloggy stuff.

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  4. You are so right! I love the way photos are there forever, with their provenance (I started pinning because there were photos of my driftwood headboard all over the internet and people obviously didn't know where they were from. Hey ladies, it's my bed!)

    It is the easiest way to collate all the things which interest you - Pin away and suddenly realise you have a theme, so create a new board. Also I now have an inside track on people who share my love of Japanese boro, so I'm collecting lovely images from them, and sharing my own. Pictures from my website are up there too, I can let people know where they came from and keep Rough Linen images under my watchful eye. I can even see what grabs people's imagination - market research!

    Best of all, it is pleasurable. We Love Pinterest!

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    1. Exactly! It's funny how a theme appears after a while. Thanks for your comment!

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  5. Thanks for this! I am still waiting on my invite to Pinterest and haven't yet figured it all out yet. :)

    http://averyjamesphotography.blogspot.com/

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    1. Would you like me to invite you? What's your email? Email it to me.

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  6. Thanks! Sometimes I forget the power of Pinterest.

    ps. I pinned this ;)

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  7. I was one of those that "didn't get it" at first. But, now I love pinning. My Hubby is happy because I'm finding great recipes to try. I love all the beautiful images - and don't forget the wonderful information, helpful tips about anything and just lovely photos to drool over.

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    1. Have you found that it just took a little time to figure out and then you LOVE it?

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  8. We love Pinterest at our house--yes, my DH too! I'm a brand new to blogging, so I'm looking forward to figuring out how to use Pinterest and my blog together. Thanks for writing about it!

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  9. Oh Pinterest! Thank you for bringing this up, I started a few months ago but I have been neglecting my boards :)

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  10. Great advice.

    I include my blog name (www.janmary.com) as a watermark on my images, so if anything is pinned, at least the original source is obvious (I hope!)

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    1. Yes! I was planning on mentioning that in Part 2! (forgot about it this time).

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    2. How do you add a watermark to photos. I just signed up for Pinterest yesterday and am already hooked. So far I'm just repinning as I don't know how to watermark.

      A lot of my pictures I just take from my iphone and upload to blogger. Do I need to use Picasa or something to add the watermark?

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    3. Liz! Great question and fairly easy to do. I will have a quick look at Picasa and see how easy it is on there. Possibly there is an iphone app for that.

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    4. Liz, here's an app that looks easy: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/iwatermark/id357577420?mt=8

      It would be simpler to do that instead of uploading and then editing. Save time and ease! Let us know if it works.

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  11. What a fantastic resource! Thanks for letting us know about it.

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  12. This is such a fantastic subject. I had a lot to learn about this product but Im using it now and learning as I go. Keep the great info coming. We really appreciate you!

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  13. Looove Pinterest but wanted to ask if it's considered a bit naughty to self promote on there? I've seen quite a few bitchy blogs about how 'so-n-so' pinned their own stuff or even *gasp* repinned so I'm not sure about the etiquette. I've only pinned my own stuff with my eyes shut so it's technically an accident lol

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    1. I think the etiquette isn't written in stone yet...we can probably make it up as we go along for now. Plus, who cares what the bitchy blogs say?

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  14. Love pinterest! I'm using it for my blog, for work and for personal use. I don't know what I did before pinterest - no more books full of pictures/note and files on my computer!!!

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  15. Great article, I've been on there a while and never thought to self promote, mind you I'll have to up the ante with my photos now :)

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  16. Thank you for this article. I'm a pinterest lover and enjoy networking with such a great creative group of people.

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  17. Regarding the comment/reply from:
    Sarah (Blog Guidebook) Bradford, Jan 20, 2012 02:22 PM
    "I think the etiquette isn't written in stone yet...we can probably make it up as we go along for now. Plus, who cares what the bitchy blogs say?"

    LOL...You might wanna check out Pinterest's Rules of Etiquette~ :)
    http://pinterest.com/about/etiquette/
    Rule #3~ Avoid Self Promotion....
    "Pinterest is designed to curate and share things you love. If there is a photo or project you’re proud of, pin away! However, try not to use Pinterest purely as a tool for self-promotion."

    I love Pinterest, and find it to be the most inspiring place on the planet. I also believe there's a ton of marketing potential there, if you use it wisely...

    Check out this Mashable interview with Evan Sharp, Pinterest Designer and Co-Founder. At the end of the interview he discusses "Pin Etiquette". It's all a matter of good taste and how you do it.

    Thanks for the Pinterest 101. I know a lot of people are still confused as to what the buzz is all about. I'm hooked myself. Utterly, hopelessly, hooked. http://pinterest.com/bellewest/

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    1. Hi Thanks for the comment. I will be addressing pin etiquette in Part 2. Yes, I think there may be some debate about Rule #3. Yes, the Mashable interview was very good, thanks for mentioning it! (I just read it earlier today too!)

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  18. Love the article!! Thanks for the info!

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  19. Great post - thank you. I know I was super overwhelmed with Pinterest at first. Now that I understand it, I feel the power!!!

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  20. Great post! I would love to get more visitors to my blogs through Pinterest...

    But...I'm now scared to use Pinterest as I read this article http://www.fotosidan.se/cldoc/varning-for-upphovsrattsbrott.htm (It's in swedish, Google translate it). It's about the copyright.

    As I have pinned photos I have also been contacted by photographers that wishes me to edit/write links and the photographers name (and that's okay for me, but when I have about 70 boards and 27000+ pins it's a djungle there to find back to the pin I need to edit link/photographer on).

    Some photos I haven't even uploaded to Pinterest myself, some I actually have pinned from an other person who pinned from an other person... Do I have to edit all of them on my boards too? Yes! IF NOT, I can have to pay fines to the owner of the pictures I've pinned from her/him as I'm "using them" and spreading them! And there's not always "happy photographers" who tells me to do this, some might sue me without asking me to remove or edit the pictures. Pinterest are not responsible for my actions, nor yours. Shouldn't we get scared to use Pinterest??

    Maya, Sweden

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  21. I know all this should be obvious, but ... I really needed this series! Thanks!

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  22. This is SO helpful! Thank you so much! I am new to blogging and have pinned some of my own photos (with a watermark) with great response! I have been a bit timid, though, since I read somewhere that etiquette says to not pin your own stuff very much...? I can't seem to help myself sometimes, though, because of the totally awesome traffic it sends my way! I also pin other stuff very often too!

    Thanks again, this blog is so incredibly helpful!

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    1. Cassie, we think it's okay to do a little self-promotion now and then...keep blogging!

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  23. Hey. I want to recomned PinGraphy for Driving Traffic to your Pinterest Account. Features like scheduling pins and uploading pins in bulk drives huge traffic from your pinterest followers. http://pingraphy.com

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  24. I always try to back track and link to an original source when possible. I also like to put the creator's/owner's name in brackets. I know I'd appreciate the credit and I assume others do to.

    This series is incredibly helpful, thanks for filling in the gaps.

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  25. I love this blog. I just discovered it yesterday, and have a lot of your pages up in tabs. It is also such a beautiful design. Its honestly one of my favorite designs that I have seen in a while.
    Thanks for your tutorials and all your hard work.
    I do find that it is a bit ironic that I can't seem to figure out how to pin this article to my blogging board? Maybe I'm just missing the Pin it button.

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    1. Thank you Melissa, for your kind words! We actually took our Pin It buttons down...but I will add one back to this article for you. Don't forget you should drag the Pin It app to your browser bar from Pinterest's site. This allows you to pin even if a site doesn't have a Pin It button right next to the image.

      Let us know if you need more help!

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  26. Sarah,
    One thing I would like for you to consider...font colors that are pale (gray, turquoise, yellow, etc...) are hard to read. My eyes are not as good as they once were, and it is a strain to read pale fonts.

    There are so many wonderful things about your blog, that I continue to read it even though the font colors are pale.

    Judith

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    1. Hi Judith, thanks for still reading. We may change the turquoise a bit. But I think the gray is here to stay. Thanks so much for your comment.

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Comments are how we stay connected as bloggers. Let us know how you feel and we'll return the favor...stay calm and blog on!!! And guess what? You'll never find Word Verification on our blog...it gets kind of annoying when you can't read what WV wants you to verify right?

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