We have all followed at least one person that we grew to regret. Obsessive pinning, rude remarks, constantly seeing their pasty avatar… it really takes away from the whole experience, and, usually results in the loss of a follower. Lose too many followers and the sites purpose of promotion starts to become void. Here are some tips that will ensure you wont loose any of your followers.
1. Don’t (over) promote yourself.
This one goes a bit without saying, but, you’d be surprised at just how often I see this with Etsy shop owners. Nothing makes someone click the “Unfollow” button faster than seeing tons of boards filled with your own items. The exception to this rule? Create a separate board that has only your own items. This way you can pin all of your stuff, and, it’s not looked down upon. People like honesty over attempting to “thinly veil” your promotion. The exception to the exception? Don’t pin in this board too often – and never allow this board to have more pins than any of your other boards. Your followers find your stuff through their feed – and they wont always click on your name. If you consecutively pin say your whole shop in this board, it looks just as bad as only pinning your own items. Furthermore, it looks bad when you have two boards “Thinks I like – 5 pins” “Things I’ve made – 92 pins”, once more, voiding the whole purpose of not looking ‘grubby’.
2. Do not share too much information!
The unspoken purpose of Pinterest is to drive traffic to websites, blogs, (and in our case) Etsy shops – People see things they like and they click it! Pinterest is based entirely on the idea that “a picture is worth a thousand words”. Don’t take this to heart! If you’re pinning a recipe, don’t stick the whole thing in there! If people already see the recipe, and the picture, they aren’t going to click the blog, aren’t they? Which eliminates the entire purpose of pinning in the first place. This extends to tutorials and articles (among other things). Just give a snippet of information!
3. DO NOT over pin.
One more you’d think would go without saying – right? I mean – people get real sick real fast of seeing your avatar pop up in your feed, that’s quite obvious. In a nutshell – don’t pin everything you find. But, as I’ve also learned, don’t pin everything you like…. in a row. Once more, in a feed it looks just as bad. Space things out. After pinning something, book mark your next favorite page and wait 10 minutes or so before you pin again. Let some other pins go through. This does two things that help you, 1. You don’t come off looking like a grubby cow. 2, A different audience of people will see your pin, spreading out and optimizing views.
4. Be nice!
Many of us have been pinned in a “Not handmade!” or “Easy Weekend Project” board, and, it’s not a fun experience. As a general rule, don’t create any “Worst of Etsy”, “Bad Picks”, “Regretsy Inspired”, “Bad Reads”, “Don’t buy it!” boards. This extends to comments. You’re representing your business, and you don’t want to come off as rude.
Credit is the most important thing. If you’re pinning an item, make sure it links to a shop, if you’re pinning art, make sure you say who painted it (Unless it’s obvious.), if you’re pinning a picture of a craft you made or an item you cooked, link to the blog/tutorial where you found it. You get the idea. Most importantly, never TAKE credit for something that you didn’t do, and whenever possible use the “Pin It” toolbar, don’t just save the picture to your computer and upload it from there. Furthermore, if you see someones pin you like, rather than clicking on the link and pinning it to make it look like you found it to your followers, just click “Repin”.
With these tips, a little modesty, and some common sense, you can be sure no one will ever click the dreaded “Unfollow’ button, and most of all your P.R. as a pinner/shop will improve greatly!