Every social media platform has its strengths, but Pinterest absolutely excels at driving direct web traffic in a way Instagram and Facebook never will. On average, our IDCO Studio clients receive three times more web traffic from Pinterest than any other channel, which means it’s a strategic marketing platform designers should be investing in. At the end of the day, likes and followers are good, but portfolio views and client inquiries are even better.
If you’ve written off Pinterest in the past, we’re so excited to help guide you through the learning process. Sure, this platform can be a fun place to collect recipes, ideas, and inspiration, but this traffic-driver has so much more to offer interior designers looking to expand their reach.
Here's why Pinterest is important for interior designers:
As visual content creators, interior designers should always be thinking about where their work can be seen and how it can be searched. The answer to both of those questions? Pinterest. For many of us, Pinterest is our go-to search engine (yes, even before Google!) for lifestyle, art, food, travel, and anything in between. It’s where we all turn for design inspiration, and it’s also most people’s starting point when first considering a home project.
For interior designers, Pinterest should be your primary source of website traffic. The more eyes that can see your Pins, the greater chance you have to convert those eyes into website visits and convert those website visits into clients. Even better when those eyes are the right ones. The platform shared that "45% of people in the US with a household income over $100K are on Pinterest." In a service-based industry like interior design, a website visit from a viable client is worth its weight in gold.
Don’t get us wrong; Instagram is a key part of the equation. Every business owner should be actively using their Instagram account. But, we’ve found that too many designers underutilize Pinterest and its abilities to grow their business with quality client leads, both locally and worldwide.
At IDCO Studio, we offer a comprehensive Pinterest Content Package in addition to professionally designed Pinterest templates. Both of these services can take your Pinterest marketing strategies to the next level, but let's cover a few beginner strategies to get you started:
1. Start By Cleaning Up Your Profile
First and foremost, we want to make sure your Pinterest profile is a true reflection of your brand at every touchpoint. Decluttering your Pinterest presence may require a bit of legwork, but curating your online presence is well worth the time investment.
Start by making sure your username matches your business name (example: Jane Doe Interior Design versus just Jane Doe), and write a one to two-sentence bio of engaging copy that tells users who you are and what you do. This copy will be similar to your Instagram bio, but make sure it’s both to-the-point and polished.
If you’re a solo entrepreneur or managing your account as a single person, stick to a branded headshot as your Pinterest profile photo. A headshot immediately puts a face to a name and creates a point of personal connection. For a larger design firm with many team members, a business logo is also an appropriate option. Either way, your profile image should signal instant brand recognition, so try to keep this image consistent across all your social platforms.
2. Make Sure You Have a Business Account
Up until now, you might have been combining your personal and business pins into one account. But we really encourage you to think strategically about your presence on Pinterest. Similar to the homepage of your website or your curated feed on Instagram, a Pinterest profile needs to make a strong first impression.
If you are new to Pinterest, you’ll want to create a separate Pinterest account specifically for your business that can be linked directly on your website. Business profiles can be linked to a personal Pinterest account to easily switch between business and personal. Creating a separate business account (step-by-step details here) allows you to craft a branded experience for your followers by focusing your content on design-related topics rather than a catch-all of travel, food, kids, or other genres.
Another effective workaround is to archive any personal boards (think recipes, workout tips, infographics, and more) by changing those board settings to “secret.” You’ll still be able to pin to those boards and revisit any saved content, but they won’t be visible to your followers. If you have already grown a substantial following on Pinterest, this is the strategy we suggest.
Design: Leclair Decor
3. Consider SEO With Board and Section Names
One of the biggest mistakes we see Pinterest users make is naming their boards or sections something too personalized or cutesy. By making your board titles straightforward and descriptive, they’re likely to appear higher in Pinterest search rankings.
For example: “Minimalist Fashion” will perform significantly better than “Get in My Closet.” If you’re struggling with what to name your board, work backward. Think about what you would search to find pins similar to your board, and use that for your board name.
Similarly, don’t forget to add keyword-friendly descriptions to each of your boards. Just like you named your board, think about what search phrases someone might use to find pins similar to yours. To add a board description, simply hover over your board and click on the pencil in the lower right corner.
You can also rearrange your Pinterest boards by simply dragging and dropping on your profile. Make sure your first boards are centered around your brand, but more importantly, what your target clients are interested in seeing.
4. Optimize Your Portfolio Images for Pinterest
Anytime someone is pinning from your portfolio, you want those Pins to be pulling accurate, descriptive information that syncs back with your site. Because Google and Pinterest look to your alt tags to see what the image is about, you should use your alt tags to describe the image. In visually-driven industries like interior designers, using your alt tag to describe exactly what is shown in the image is imperative.
For example, you might have an interior design project that has a coastal and beachy vibe. For that project's alt tags, you’d want to write something like “Bright white coastal living room design.” If there are images with close-up detail shots, consider including the name of the products featured and their brand, like “McGee & Co. recycled glass beads.”
Next, you want to include a short statement about you and your business similar to this: “Lindsey Brooke Design is a Los Angeles based interior designer.” Your full alt tag would be “Bright white coastal living room design by Lindsey Brooke Design.” You could take it a step further and say “Bright white coastal living room design by Los Angeles based interior designer Lindsey Brooke Design.”
Just remember, every time you include an alt tag, it’s adding one more keyword to your website, which helps you rank better in those search results!
5. Customize Pin Titles and Descriptions
Remember when we said to think of Pinterest as a visual search engine? That idea is coming into play once again as we consider Pin titles and descriptions. Optimizing your portfolio Pins with search-friendly keywords is a strategy game, and we always recommend beginning with the end in mind.
When you begin writing those titles and descriptions, think about which words users are most likely to type into the search bar when seeking out this specific content. While your alt tags and image titles are the first “step” as you set up your website for optimization, these Pin titles are specifically about what the user will find when they click through the Pin to your website.
Now that you’ve written your Pin title, it’s time to shift focus to a strategic Pin description. This text will describe what’s in the image, while also informing the user exactly what they’ll find when clicking through to your website. You may have already added alt tags to your images, but you’ll want to customize those Pin descriptions, especially if your Pin links to a blog post centered on a searchable topic.
5. Automate Your Posting Schedule
The key to managing all social media, Pinterest included, is bulk scheduling and automation. To make your Pinterest strategy most effective, we suggest building out time within your schedule to Pin your own work at least once a month.
The most significant way to increase your Pinterest following (and by proxy, your website traffic) is to Pin frequently and consistently. As with all algorithms, your content is prioritized when you’re using the platform regularly. Utilizing a social media scheduler like Tailwind is the easiest way to do it.
To schedule Pins from your own website, use the Tailwind extension on your browser and choose whichever Pins you want to share. You will then find yourself in the Draft folder with your Pin or number of chosen Pins. Click which boards you want the Pin to appear on. The rule of thumb is to pin to the most relevant boards first. Pin to a few boards at first, and leave some for the following weeks. This helps keep ongoing traffic to your site and doesn’t overwhelm your followers with the same pins.
To schedule a Pin from Pinterest, simply hover over a Pin. The Tailwind extension icon will pop-
Up, and you can click on it to schedule the Pin. You can also use Tailwind to create a Pin from scratch. In the schedule page, click the “Create New Pin” button over the schedule on the right-hand side. Upload the Pin image, fill in the title, the description, and schedule the boards. Voila... another Pin! This is the easiest way to schedule your portfolio images all at once, which can become part of your project reveal checklist.
Now that you’ve got all the tools in place, it’s time to use Pinterest as your brand’s secret marketing weapon. Like other forms of social media, it takes intentionality, organization, and consistency to make an impact. Continue to curate quality content and share beautiful images of your own, and watch how your numbers will translate to website views, and in turn, quality project inquiries.