Friday, April 22, 2016

7 Characteristics of a Successful Pinterest Image


By Lori Hatcher @LoriHatcher2

In last month’s article, “Why Bloggers Should Consider Pinterest,” I made a strong case for utilizing this powerful social media site to build our blogging platform. Because Pinterest is an image-driven site, it’s vital that we create strong images if we want our pins to stand out. We want readers to notice our images, pin them to their boards, and click through to read the linked blog post. Effective images can increase our blog’s pageviews, reach, and subscriber base.
Today I’d like to share seven characteristics of a successful Pinterest image:

1. It’s simple. Resist the urge to crowd your image with too much clutter. Choose a single sentence, short list, or brief quote. Use an easy-to-read font size and styles.

2. It’s vertical. Unlike Facebook, which favors horizontal pictures, vertical images show up best on Pinterest. When I create images, I use the collage feature on Picmonkey, then rotate it vertically. If you’re unfamiliar with Picmonkey, click here to read Edie’s post, “Step by Step Instructions for Adding Text to Images.” The ideal image size for a Pinterest image is 1500 x 3000.

A good Pinterest image can stand alone.
3. It can stand alone. Think of a Pinterest board as a bulletin board or the front of your refrigerator. Readers want to pin images that are visually pleasing and deliver content they can use, reflect on, or refer back to.

4. It contains a simple list. Not every blog post lends itself to a list, but some of my most popular pins contain lists that link back to a full blog post that further explains the topic. I use a list as an appetizer to whet my readers’ appetite for the blog post.

5. It always includes your watermark or logo. Sadly, not all Pinterest users are ethical. If you don’t have a watermark on your image, someone can easily steal your pin and promote it as their own. I always include the name and web address of my blog in small letters on every pin.

6. It uses clear original or copyright-free images. Don’t just cut and paste an image from Google or Facebook. Most of these are copyrighted images. We’ve all heard horror stories about bloggers receiving big bills because they used a copyrighted image without paying for it or gaining permission. To avoid a nasty surprise, use your own photos or obtain copyright-free images from a reputable source. My favorite is Pixabay, which offers many beautiful free images. For other sources of free photos, click here to read the post “Where to Find Free Images Online.”

7. It’s imbedded as one of the photos in your blog post. If you include the graphic in your blog post, when you go to Pinterest to pin your image, you can simply enter the link to your blog post and all the images from your post will pop up. Click on the Pinterest-worthy image, write an engaging description, and click PIN. Voila’!

This is by no means an exhaustive list or tutorial, but if you follow my suggestions, you’ll be well on your way to creating beautiful, popular images that will stand out in the Pinterest stream, increase your blog traffic, and help you reach a wider audience with your writing.

Now here’s your homework: If you’ve created a Pinterest image that has a good number of repins, leave a link to it in the Comment box so we can see it and learn from your success. I’ve included one of my most popular images here. 

How to know it's God speaking to you.

If you’ve never included an image suitable for pinning in a blog post, create one using these guidelines, include it in your next blog post, and leave a link in the Comment box so we can take a look. The suggestions above won’t do you a bit of good unless you jump in and give it a try.

TWEETABLE

Lori Hatcher is the editor of Reach Out, Columbia magazine and the author of two devotional books, Hungry for God … Starving for Time, Five-Minute Devotions for Busy Women and  Joy in the Journey – Encouragement for Homeschooling Moms. A blogger, writing instructor, and women’s ministry speaker, her goal is to help women connect with God in the craziness of life You’ll find her pondering the marvelous and the mundane on her blog, Hungry for God. . . Starving for Time . Connect with her on Facebook, Twitter (@LoriHatcher2), or Pinterest (Hungry for God).

13 comments:

  1. Lori, Thank you so much for the great information. I still have not made Pintrest a habit. I have the tools to. Now I need the time. Have a blessed day, my friend. I pray you are enjoying your new home.

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    1. Thanks, Cherrilynn, we're settling in nicely. Good for you for realizing how Pinterest can help move along your writing career. I encourage you to set a goal to work on Pinterest for one hour a week. You'll be surprised how much you accomplish. And I know you'll quickly see the benefits to investing time there. Blessings to you!

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  2. Thanks, Lori. I haven't used Pinterest yet, but the more I read about this site, I know I need to be sharing there. Your instructions are very helpful to learn the do's and don'ts. I will be exploring soon!

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    1. There's a bit of a learning curve, Barbara, but I think you'll be surprised at how quickly you'll start reaping the benefits. I encourage you to jump in. You'll enjoy it, I think.

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  3. I created a board but haven't done much with it. Thanks for these tips.

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    1. You've taken the first step, Sharron, good for you! Now you've got homework to take you to the next one. Remember to share your image so we can all admire it :)

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  4. Lori, this is a most helpful article. Thanks so much. I would love to share a pin from my boards, but don't know how to link it here. I've only shared by email, etc. Still a learner. (: Elva Cobb Martin, Pres. ACFW-SC Chapter

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    1. Elva, if you click on one of your Pinterest images, when it opens up larger, it will have its own unique URL. Copy and paste it in the comment box here, and it should show up as a live link that we can click on.

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  5. Thanks for the info, Lori. How do you put a watermark or logo? Do you use a text box on Picmonkey? That's the only way I know.

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    1. Yup, it's that simple. If it's your web address, it won't be a live link witthin the image, but it will remind viewers that it's a copyrighted image.

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  6. Lori, I've pinned your lovely photo to my own Pinterest. I was recently surprised by the number of times a couple of images I'd posted were pinned as they were not what I would call great. But they obviously spoke to others. Here's one blogpost that was pinned 99 times.
    https://greenlightlady.wordpress.com/2014/12/05/i-dream-along-a-tranquil-shore/
    Another one was: https://picturescriptures.wordpress.com/2016/02/20/isaiah-5115-for-i-am-the-lord-your-god/
    As you can see, they weren't spectacular pictures. The bird pictures were taken using a cheap camera too. So I'd recommend that anyone can give it a try. Like the Bible says: "Don't wait for perfect conditions..." Ecclesiastes 11:4
    Blessings on your weekend ~ Wendy

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    1. Wendy, your story is the perfect example of how Pinterest is a great way to reach people you'd never connect with otherwise. Thanks so much for sharing your images. You get an A+ on your assignment!

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  7. Lori, I'm sorry this is so basic, but when you write "when you go to Pinterest to pin your image, you can simply enter the link to your blog post". I'm assuming "to your blog post" is the same as "of your blog post." My question is: where exactly do you put the blog post link? Where it says, "tell us about this pin"? I don't see anywhere else that I'm inputing any information.

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