Whether you’re a professional pet blogger or a pet-related business, you are probably on Pinterest.
Pinterest has changed a lot in the last year or so. It’s no longer a social media channel but, instead, is a visual search engine.
Also, Pinterest is no longer a chronological feed of pins from people you follow but, instead, the pins you see are dictated by an algorithm (Smartfeed) like Facebook and Instagram.
The Smartfeed ranks pins, among other things, on how relevant they are to a person and how popular they are in general. This popularity is gauged by the individual pin but also the popularity of your Pinterest profile.
Like Facebook, reach factors into the value of your account. A higher reach means that more people find your content interesting so Pinterest may favor it in the Smaretfeed.
The goal is to keep your reach as high as you can.
One way to increase your reach is to pin valuable and interesting pet content from others.
What Kind of Content Should You Curate and How Much?
Well, first, you should only be pinning content if it’s related to your niche in some way.
You can check out what I pin to my Pinterest profile for my dog blog.
Second, you want to try and pin as much of your own content as you can without populating every board with only your own pins. Therefore, you’ll need to pin content from others.
The maximum ratio should be 80% your content and 20% pins from other people. However, unless you are writing 5 blog posts a week, and creating 3+ pins per article, maintaining that ratio is quite a stretch.
A more obtainable ratio is 50-50. Personally, I schedule 5 pins a day and 1-2 of those are from my own blog.
So what kind of content from others should you be repinning?
It’s pretty simple – content that is inline with your brand, related to the topics you write about and your blog readers are interested in, and that align with the Pinterest boards you have created on your profile.
Remember though, the purpose of pinning other people’s content is to increase the reach for your Pinterest profile. To do that, the graphic needs to follow Pinterest best practices, be eye-catching, and useful.
The short and sweet is that content you curate for your profile should related to pets, and maybe a sub-niche if you have one, and be:
- Taller than wider (square is ok too but not ideal).
- Have a text overlay that is the title or describes what the viewer can expect from the article.
- Have a pin description, ideally with several keywords in it (don’t take the time to edit the description yourself to improve it unless you want to add your own note to followers though).
- Deliver on the promise – lead to the same website as indicated on the graphic (URL or logo) and to an article that matches what the pin says (ie. not be a hijacked pin- you can verify this by clicking through to the article).
Ok, so WHAT to pin is relatively simple. But where do you find this content?
The Top 6 Places to Find Pet-related Pinterest Content for Your Boards
Curating high-quality content for your Pinterest boards can be a big time suck. I can easily spend an hour curating 10 quality pins from others.
However, having some solid go-to places to find content can help make the job of finding pet-related content for your boards much more efficient.
These are the places I search for relevant pet-related Pinterest content.
Note: You’ll want to install the Pinterest or Tailwind (if you use that) browser extension to pin content from external websites. For aesthetic purposes, some bloggers hide their pin in their blog post so you don’t see it automatically. You can find any hidden, pinnable images by clicking the browser extension.
Pinterest Group Boards
The word on the Pinterest street today is that group boards are dead.
In the past, people joined huge group boards in attempt to game the system and get more eyes on their pins. However, in a Facebook interview with Buffer a few months ago, Pinterest representatives essentially said that content from large group boards created for the sole purpose of gaining pin distributions will be de-emphasized in the Smartfeed (37 minutes in).
They said that using boards for real collaboration with other pinners is ok but don’t use them “as a means of driving traffic”.
To me, group boards are not dead though. At least not yet. I’ve joined a few group boards as a way of easily finding content from fellow pet bloggers to repin to my boards.
I still occasionally pin my own images to group boards but I don’t expect them to get a lot of traffic that way.
You have to be a member of Tailwind to access this source but I highly, highly recommend becoming one. (affiliate link so I get a small commission if you sign up). See the section below for more reasons why you should be using Tailwind.
Tailwind tribes are similar to group boards on Pinterest. They have rules, you add your own pins to tribes, and tribe mates can share your pins to their boards.
The best thing about Tailwind tribes for me though is that they are a great place to find content for me to pin.
The advantage of using Tailwind Tribes over Pinterest group boards is that the members, by the nature of being on Tailwind, take sharing their content on Pinterest seriously. The pins in tribes are almost always high quality with detailed, keyword-rich descriptions.
Pinterest Suggested Pins
Sorting through the sea of pins on Pinterest can be tedious.
One way to find pins related to the kind of content you are writing, or are interested in, is to pay attention to the “more like this” section underneath pins when you click on them.
This technique can be hit or miss but I find it’s accurate more often than not. Pinterest’s intention is that these pins are related to the topic of the pin you clicked on.
More importantly, many are the most popular related pins so you know that they are more likely to do well and increase the reach of your Pinterest profile.
To go even deeper and discover additional similar pins, you can click the “show me more like this” button on the bottom right of pins that you click to expand (it looks like a bracket). In my experience, a lot of the pins returned when using this method, versus the general “more like this” suggestions, are different.
Pinterest will also sometimes send you emails with suggested pins based on your interests. I save these emails in a Gmail folder for later and periodically check them. However, I find their email suggestions to be significantly less accurate than the two methods above.
Other Bloggers and Companies with Pet Content on Pinterest
There are a few bloggers and brands in the pet niche that I really admire.
They regularly produce, and curate, interesting and relevant content related to my niche. They also curate quality content so I know I the possibility of me finding a lot of content from their profile to pin is good.
I keep a list of about 10 and rotate through them as needed.
I visit their profile and check out their latest pins on their main profile view or visit individual boards.
Your Pinterest Home Feed
It probably seems like this one should be a the top of my list but it’s not.
With the Pinterest Smartfeed in play, I don’t always see everything people I follow are pinning.
Instead, I often see pins that Pinterest thinks I would be interested in (and I’m actually not. Or at least they are not something I would repin to my boards) and promoted pins.
I like to browse my feed every now and then though to see if there is anything that catches my eye.
Both the home and following tab are worth checking out.
Feedly (Feed Reader)
Do your member feed readers? 5 years ago they were all the rage. You could set up the RSS feeds of all your blogger friends, and favorite bloggers, all in one place.
You probably thought feed readers were dead.
It’s true that they’re “old school”, and few people use they anymore, but they do still work.
I use Feedly to set up a list of blogs who frequently publish content related to my niche and create Pinterest optimized images for their articles.
Feedly is one of my last-ditch efforts when I can’t find enough content from my other sources but that kind of works to my advantage. Since I only use it as a source once every month or so, there are usually several articles stored up that are relevant for me to pin.
When you see an interesting article in Feedly, you can click thorough to the original and then pin from there.
It’s ok to pin someone else’s pin to more than one of your boards. Gasp! Yes, you took the time to find a good pin so use it.
For example, if I find a pin called “10 Tips for Camping with Your Dog”, I can pin it to both my Dog Camping Tips and my Camp-Hike-Backpack boards.
How to Manage this Content
To be most effective on Pinterest, you want to pin a little bit of content every day.
Ideally, you’re pinning at least 5 pins a day to Pinterest. At a minimum, you should be pinning 1 a day to one of your boards.
Some people go as high as 30 pins per day but I find that to be more typical among food and lifestyle niches than in the pet niche.
One way to do this is to sit down for 15- 30 minutes once or twice every day, go through your list of content sources, and pin 5-20 pins.
The disadvantage of this is that:
- Activity ties you to a computer – if you aren’t at your computer, nothing gets posted.
- All of your Pinterest activity is concentrated at one or two times during the day instead of being spread out evenly.
- The times you are posting are likely random – when you can fit them in with everything else you do – not necessarily posted at the best times to get the most engagement.
- It’s not very efficient. Each time you sit down, you have to get into your groove again and look up each content source.
Instead, I recommend using a Pinterest approved partner, like Tailwind, to schedule all of your pins 1-2 times a month. (affiliate link)
With Tailwind, you can:
- Schedule all of your pins for the month in 1-2 sessions.
- Create a smart schedule that chooses the best times for your pins to post based on your account engagement history.
- Visually see what pins will be posting to your account each day and reschedule them by dropping and dragging.
- Have access to Tailwind tribes, one of my top suggested places to curate pet-related content.
- Gain access to additional analytics beyond what Pinterest provides.
Signing up for Tailwind is free and you can test it out by scheduling up to 100 pins before signing up. After that, the plan for bloggers and small businesses is only $9.99 – $15 (depending on whether you pay monthly or annually)
What is your Pinterest account? I wanted to follow you but I can’t find a link to it anywhere.
Jessica Rhae says
Hi Renee. My Pinterest account is for my dog blog so I didn’t really think to list it here. There are a couple of blogging/social media boards though where I pin the articles I write for Pet Blog Biz. You can find my account at https://www.pinterest.com/Adventurewiener/
Great tips! I’m still trying to find my groove with Pinterest. I know this is about curating content, but I was wondering what is your process for scheduling your content to Tailwind Tribes? Right now, since I’m limited to 30 Tribe pins per month I try to add one a day and as far as I know there’s not a way to schedule pins to Tribes.
I loved and still love my feed reader. What has replaced them? Is it because people get most of their content from their social networks? I like feed reader because I can pick exactly what I’m going to see not what a social network thinks I want to see. Way back in the day feed readers were a huge part of blogging. Everyone had the FeedBurner widget with the number of readers you had on your blog.
Hi Colby. Great questions.
Honestly, I’m not focusing too much on Tribes right now so I don’t have a process for that. I’m focusing my current efforts on refining my pin style, keyword research, (Pinterest specific), and improving my pin descriptions.
With that being said, I personally wouldn’t worry about pinning 1 pin to Tribes per day. I also haven’t seen a feature where you can schedule pins to Tribes and part of the beauty of using Tailwind is that you don’t have to log in every day. When I do ramp up my Tribe pinning game, I would probably post 2 or 3 to each tribe once a week if the rules allow that (most of the ones I am in do as long as you are also sharing the appropriate ratio of other’s content).
As far as the feed reader, I do feel like a lot of people get their information about new content from social media instead (primarily Facebook). You make a VERY good point about making your own choice about the content you see with a Feed Reader but I think it’s just another thing people don’t have time for anymore. I feel like people rarely follow blogs like they used to anyway.