How good are you at Pinterest etiquette?

My philosophy here is that if you take the time to read what I write and share it the least I can do is return the favour.

Courtesy matters. We interact with people regularly, whether it’s online or IRL. It’s helpful to do this pleasantly. Etiquette is respectful and kind and most useful of all, it’s convenient.

I can’t teach you moral values and ethical behaviour here, but I can teach you some Pinterest manners that will get you where you want to go.

  1. be respectful to your audience in Pinterest

Respect is about knowing what's going on around you.

I respect people who are good at their job, who ask for permission, who say thank you even if it's not necessary, who notice if you have sadness or worry in your eyes, who have lived through loss and irreparable damage and know they can survive; women who swing in high heels effortlessly and those who can't even cook a chocolate cake — people who radiate respect and life.

I have a hard time respecting those who don't deliver, though.

Take notice when someone tried one of your pins or added a photo or video to show others how your Pin turned out in the real world.

“When people try a Pin, their feedback will show up right on the Pin itself. Just scroll down to see how it turned out for others”. And answer every. Single. Comment.

Start conversations, after that firm "virtual handshake".

And don't forget to reciprocate.

2. be authentic

Seth Godin offers a more useful definition than mine: "Authenticity, for me, is doing what you promise, not 'being who you are'".

You have a tacit agreement with your audience on Pinterest.

If you're clicking on a photo of a delicious-looking chocolate cake, chances are you're expecting to click through to the recipe - not just the photo itself. You're also not waiting to be taken to the home page blog. Please, don't make me dig through your site to find what you pinned in the first place.

Don't be spammy.

“Are we talking don't post the exact same photo 6 times at once?” as my friend Mandy pointed out?

Yes, we are. You shouldn't pin the SAME image in too many boards at the SAME time because who follows you might find it over and over and it's annoying ... and it just looks spammy.

Avoid constant self-promotion.

It's incredibly easy to get caught up with pinning all the things from your blog. The thing with that is it's self-serving instead of an act based on sharing. I’m going unpopular here, but I firmly believe that Pinterest is a community made by people for people.

Pinterest wants us to collect images and not self-celebratory walls of fame. That you can leave for Instagram.

3. credit your source

No, I don't mean or Google Images, the original source. This means carefully including links with any image you pin, and also checking all images before repinning to one of your boards.

It's about giving credit where it's due.

And please, don't pin a post directly from the homepage of a blog, but click the headline and go to the permalink so people will find it later.

It's about sharing reputable, useful websites with your followers.

If your pins lead to broken or irrelevant links, meaning it’s leading to a website that has nothing to do with the pin itself, then this is going to lower your internal user ranking with Pinterest. Pinterest is looking for the highest quality pins and users to share.

And learn to be patient.

Patience is a tough art to master, but I believe everything happens in its own time.

Don't start getting scared that what you're doing isn't right or good enough. Just allow yourself to be imperfect and keep showing up anyway because that's the only way to get where you want to be. I tell myself this story every single day.

Remember also that when success materialises too quickly, instead of organically develop over time, it comes with its own set of challenges including being overwhelmed and not being able to adjust. You'll know when the time is right.

Love you, Antonella

Important note

When you click on a pin (photo) on Pinterest from your mobile phone, Pinterest opens the link attached to the photo and shows you on the bottom of the screen the option of either a thumbs up and thumbs down. Pinterest is asking you if you found what you were looking for, if the link took you where the pin was directing you or if instead it took you to a non-existing page or to a different page, where the content you were looking for is not displayed but need to be searched for in the website linked. This is the way you can tell Pinterest that you are a good user of the platform. Use it.


Does it helps you, now?

Did you had a light-bulb or a-ha moment during this post?

Do you have nothing to say? You can talk about that, too.

Just let me know in the comment! and don’t forget: drop your Pinterest handle in the comments below so I can connect with you and show you some love. After all, our goal is to grow together.