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“How long does a bottle of vodka last in someone else’s house”? and other questions. A bit about being restless, evolving, and asking the next better question.

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Your Website + Pinterest (the thing no one’s talking about)

Feb 10, 2012 ,

Pinterest Friendly WebsitesNot so long ago, I didn’t get what all of the hype was about Pinterest. In fact, I was militant about taking quite the opposite approach — eff Pinterest and all of the folks who were using this “4Chan for your mom” social site where you “pinned” things to “boards.” Sharing a twin bed with Sarah Palin sounded more appealing to me.

But thanks to the likes of Francisco Rosales over at Social Mouths and Jason Falls over at Entrepreneur Magazine, I changed by tune. Especially when I was being bombarded by statistics like Pinterest driving more traffic than Google+, YouTube, and LinkedIn combined.

And I’m on Pinterest. You can check out my boards covering everything from Hedgehog Porn to business smarts. But today, I want to talk to everyone out there with a website — whether you ever decide to give three frog’s fine ass hairs about Pinterest or not.

You Need New Traffic

No one throws up a website or blog hoping no one will visit it. While there are some folks out there with supremely shitty web presences that they really should hope no one visits, most of us are always looking for ways to:

So right now — I want you to figure out if your website and every single one of your blog posts and potentially sharable content (whitepapers, videos, etc.) is Pinterest-friendly. Because is your website and social sharing settings aren’t letting people share your content on Pinterest, you’re missing the mark. You’re not only disgruntling (is anyone ever “gruntled?”) your current visitors who use Pinterest — you’re missing out on all those new eyeballs they could help bring back to your site.

What Does “Pinterest-Friendly” Mean?

Shoo-howdy! Am I glad you asked. Well, it means that you have an appropriate image identified for every page or website element that has sharing — or “pinning” potential. The folks using social sharing, and most recently, Pinterest, use either browser toolbar widgets or ones you see at the top of this post through social bookmarking applications like Digg Digg (my plugin of choice). Here’s how it works:

npr music pinterest screenshot

There isn’t a SINGLE image associated with the video I’ve just fallen in love with that I can “pin” onto Pinterest. And whie you can’t see it, even if I select one of these images, it goes to a completely white image which makes pinning completely pointless.

I LOVE THIS VIDEO.

I WANT TO SHARE IT!

I SUPPORT NPR!

But why does NPR hate me?

What this has done is tell me that (1) I can’t share things on Pinterest from NPR Music easily, and hence (2) I probably won’t try in the future.

So how can you take some simple steps to keep your content from looking all jacked up on Pinterest and being Pinterest-friendly so that the legions of Pinners can pin the living hell out of your site?

Making Your Stuff Pinterest-Friendly

This really hit home for me earlier this week when I launched ErikaNapoletano.com. Having previously been victim to sites like LinkedIn and Facebook refusing to pull my site’s meta data properly, I tested my new site pre-launch. I wanted it to be snuggly, social, and inherently sharable…which meant PINNABLE, too. And wouldn’t you know it? I ran into more issues than TIME Magazine from the get-go. After some diligent work on my web developer’s part, we resolved the issue. Here’s what you can do to make your stuff not just sharable…but PINNABLE.

With a little work (and some shameless asking for help), my new website went from this…

before web shot

To this…

Pinterest ErikaNapoletano dot com

And I’d love to see more of my favorite online destinations take Pinterest to heart. Because the bottom line is–this whole “social media” thing? It continues to thrive because people want to share. As businesspeople, we should always have an eye on the trends and ensure that our website and online strategies give our audiences what they want. And in this case, it’s the ability to Pin your content to a site you might never use and frankly, don’t quite care about. But you should. If for no other reason than to honor your audience.

Happy Pinning!

24 comments
David Crowley
David Crowley

Yes, good points! Have had similar frustrating experiences with sites that don't have images available for pinning.

SusanPutman
SusanPutman

Great post. Captured questions about pinterest perfectly. LOVE your web site response.

Greg Childs
Greg Childs

Followed... Would it be fair to say, Erika, you don't have shit worth reading?  :)  Thanks for a great blog.

Dust Bunny Mafia
Dust Bunny Mafia

This is GREAT! I need to do more of this with my http://www.DustBunnyMafia.com guys!  Cute Dust Bunnies in fedoras are already a hit with people (pun intended)... if I optimize the images, they can go even more viral. Thanks for the tips!

SL Clark
SL Clark

Good God, the web is NOT like a toaster. Popped in Digg Digg to get some Pinning goddness, and splat. Narrowed it down, it didn't play nice with W3 Total Cache, or so it would seem. Email developers, maybe get an answer? LOL

John burke
John burke

Informative post for my company and me. We will explore Pinterest immediately. Equally important, I will pass it on to the folks at NPR. (We are the national supplier of logo-imprinted branding products for pubradio – an odd role for a little company in Lyons, CO.) And, we have attended the desk conferences at NPR. They are in person much more fun and crazy than in video.)

Christian
Christian

Great points on Pinterest. Plus, thanks for reminding me about Bill Frisell. That dude is such a great player :)

Ricardo Bueno
Ricardo Bueno

Quick tip: if you go to: http://pinterest.com/source/yoursite.com it'll show you how many times people have pinned your content. Pretty neat actually.   As for me, I have an account, but I'm still trying to get used to it. The last thing I want to do is be self-promotional (that's not a strategy - that's a quick, sure-fire way to get ignored).

D.T. Pennington
D.T. Pennington

I'm still fighting about with Pinterest. One of their (clearly stated) rules is to not hock your own shit. Why do they say this? Because the URL you post will, in some way, track back to an affiliate link. I posted my own garden photography I've shot, linking back to my flickr or notquitehippie.com project. I go through a few days later and the link has changed to send me over to the Burpee (seed company) website. I'm loosing traffic and getting nothing in return.  I've seen dozens of blogs about how every content marketer needs to be on Pinterest, but if they keep doing this, they're likely to close down a valuable resource: original content. 

Ben Anderson
Ben Anderson

Is it just me or are there no "pinterest friendly" images on this post? I just tried to "pin" this and found that the images available had almost nothing to do with this post other than the great big "P". :)

Jason Yormark
Jason Yormark

Great actionable article Erika.  I've found using the featured image on Wordpress gets the job done in and of itself without any other adjustments.  Just out of curiosity, do you intend on sharing all your blog articles on Pinterest?  Also, just an FYI when I used my pin it bookmarklet, worked like a charm, but your pin it button the image didn't pre-populate for me.  Great work!

Sarah Arrow
Sarah Arrow

Ok, I'll bite and pin.  I have had the same issue with video as well and it's really, really annoying,

The Redhead
The Redhead

What's not to love about Bill Frisell? :)

The Redhead
The Redhead

Self-promotion  is also against the Pinterest TOS -- so it's also a way to get you booted :)

Paul Sikkema
Paul Sikkema

Pinterest is using Skimlinks to make a little revenue.  Until I knew that I was trying to add direct affliate links to posts and they were getting changed. I get around their relinking now by sending people to my blog post instead of an affiliate link.  It's working so far on todaysmower.com and toolboxhero.com

The Redhead
The Redhead

I've never seen a link of mine change to-date. Curious.

The Redhead
The Redhead

Pinterest will pull images associated with the site -- and that's a Pinterest thing ;)

The Redhead
The Redhead

Epically important for me to know -- thanks, Jason. I just installed the Pin button this AM and I'm sending my web dev on it right now. Thank you! And yes, I'm developing a board for my blog posts alone. So if people want to avoid my "vanity" content, they can head on over and check out some hedgehogs.

Gwen
Gwen

Yes.  I would agree, but the fine print says "try not to" ...do I smell a loophole?  

The Redhead
The Redhead

Day-yum. Thanks for the links, lady.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] for some more interesting viewpoints on Pinterest’s growth, Social Mouths, Jason Falls and Erika over at Redhead Writing break it down [...]

  2. [...] has been a ton of press on Pinterest this week. If you cannot wait for your weekend roundup of the fun things I enjoy, join [...]

  3. [...] Pinterest And Your Website Content: Erika Napoletano explains how Pinterest can drive more traffic than YouTube, Google+, and LinkedIn combined – and why this is important to your business. [...]

  4. [...]  And for some more interesting viewpoints on Pinterest’s growth, Social Mouths, Jason Falls and Erika over at Redhead Writing break it down awesomely.  Also have to give a shout out to my S360 partner in crime Molly Killien [...]