Linking to your Pinterest account alongside your Twitter and Facebook profiles is standard practice, but there is much more you can do to promote your Pinterest boards and increase followers on that platform.
Be Strategic: Share Boards (Not Profile or Pins)
It’s normal to share a link to your Pinterest account, the page that shows all your boards. But if most users are like me, they don’t want to click that big Follow All button. I may love your social media board, but I’m not so crazy about following your rock climbing board too. I prefer to follow boards rather than people.
Another common technique is to share a link to a specific pin. If a reader follows a link to a pin, she will hopefully click to visit the original page and maybe repin it. But you haven’t necessarily gained a follower.
So sharing your main account and sharing pins may not be the best way to gain followers. Experiment with a different tactic: Share a link to a board instead of your account profile or a particular pin.
When you visit an individual board, there is a big red button that says Follow Board. If the topic is remotely relevant to the reader, she will probably click to follow. She wants more of that same topic.
Voila, you have just gained another follower by sharing a link to a board instead of a pin or a profile.
How to Share Boards
1. Tweet individual boards on Twitter with a brief description.
Go ahead and load up your HootSuite or Buffer scheduler (not queue) with a dozen tweets promoting one of your best boards. Spread them out, one or two per month. Not only are you presenting yourself as an expert in that niche but you are sure to gain followers of that board too.
2. Share a screenshot.
We know that images work well for engagement. Use a picture to speak for you. Make a screenshot of a board and share that image on Facebook or Google Plus with a link back to the board.
UPDATE! I just found a very neat Chrome extension called PinCo. With it, you can create a collage of images from a particular Pinterest board. There are quite a few options for tweaking the size, layout, etc.
3. Brag a little with social proof.
When you share a board, feel free to say how many followers it already has. Social proof is powerful, so let potential followers know how many other Pinterest users already love your board.
4. Include board links on new blog posts.
For every post you publish on your blog, pin it to one of your boards and add a link to that board at the top or bottom of the post with a note like “If you like this post, you will also like the related pins on my XYZ board.”
5. Edit old but popular posts with links to relevant boards.
What old posts are still getting lots of search or Pinterest traffic? Add that same note about the relevant board at the top or bottom.
6. Add relevant Pinterest boards to sneeze pages on your blog.
If you have lists of resources that curate content all over your blog into one convenient spot, don’t forget to add your Pinterest boards there.
7. Don’t neglect Google Plus
When you share a link on Google Plus, add a link to the board where you pinned the post, saying, “This post is pinned on my XYZ board.”
8. Share a board link in guest post bios.
When contributing a post to a blog that is not yours, consider adding a link to a board that perfectly fits the topic of your post. If someone read your post and is now reading your bio, it is likely that she would also want to follow your Pinterest board on the topic.
9. Cooperate with other bloggers to create a list of similar boards.
List posts are always popular, so cooperate with some blogging pals in your niche to create curated lists of Top Ten Pinterest Boards for different aspects of your niche. Make a killer graphic for the post and have everyone in the group cross promote it. Make sure the post is more than just a list. Give annotations for each board in your list, explaining what makes that board so great.
10. Refer to boards in YouTube video descriptions
You probably already link to blog posts in your YouTube video description field. But also add a link to the board where you have pinned the video. (You do know that you can pin videos, right? You can!)