Why Your Small Business Needs To Be On Pinterest: Q&A With Rachel Ngom

Is your social media marketing plan actually converting followers into leads and sales? I know how fun social media can be…trust me! Whether it be recording Instagram stories, creating a post on Facebook…or maybe even doing an Instagram live! But, the thing about most platforms (and specifically the ones I’ve listed above), is your post loses traction within 24 HOURS unless you run paid ads to it! What if I told you that my guest on today’s episode is still driving traffic to a pin and blog she wrote 4 years ago with zero ad spend!!! Yep, meet Rachel Ngom. Ready to increase your organic reach and get more leads and sales for free? Let’s dive in!

Does Pinterest update just like Facebook does?  Is it something that is constantly being updated?

Rachel: “Yes! So you kind of do have to stay on top of it just to make sure you know the latest trends, all that stuff. The basic principles are going to stay the same so it’s just like any platform. We really do need to staying updated for sure!”

When met you I really wasn’t convinced about Pinterest. I really didn’t know that it was something I should be on and as I was starting to coach you, I was going wait a minute…I think I might need to check this out because you were giving me these crazy results and saying all these things that it was doing for other clients! Let’s kind of unpack that because there’s somebody listening right now thinking, I don’t think I really need Pinterest or I’m local business so I don’t really count for Pinterest. Why Pinterest? Why is it so amazing? Tell us why you love it so much!

Rachel: “It’s easy. It’s automated and it works so well over time. So I’ll give you the example of my fitness blog. I was building my whole fitness business on Facebook and Instagram. I had 70,000 combined followers and when the logarithm changed my business just tanked and I had to figure out something. So I started posting on my blog and putting it on Pinterest and after a couple months, I noticed traffic was coming in. My email list was growing and I saw I had 34,000 people visiting that blog every single month and I was just like WHAT…they’re all coming from Pinterest, which was crazy!

I did not post on that blog, didn’t touch my Pinterest account the entire year of 2018. My traffic went up from Pinterest. I’m still making sales from that blog literally every day!”

So crazy! So you don’t own a fitness business, well you technically do because it’s making money but you’re just not actively working in that business in over a year. Now you said you know they’re coming from Pinterest and you’re getting that information from I assume Google analytics. So we probably have a few listeners that are saying, oh, I don’t have Google analytics on my website…

I will tell this. You might think you know about Google analytics because you’ve been using it. Well sometimes when you update your website, if you transfer your website or you change it over you might think your tech person totally set that up and your web designer said they were going to do it. I would confirm it’s actually on there. I would confirm that and here’s how know, if you don’t check your stats, I would say at least monthly, you need to be checking.

Rachel: “You need to! Google analytics is what really helped me explode that fitness business because I looking at what blog posts were the most popular, what’s resonating with people because before I was posting all this just random fitness crap and it wasn’t niche down at all. When I saw my most popular stuff was about eating high fat, low carb, keto and intermittent fasting, I just switched my entire focus to doing that and that’s when things really took off, but I wouldn’t known that if didn’t have Google analytics.”

What I love about that is everybody has such niche drama! Everybody freaks out about their niche. It’s like should do this? Should I do that? Listen to what Rachel just said. Go check out your Google analytics because you’ve got it set up, or you’re going to it set up today and then see what people are actually checking out. Problem solved! Numbers don’t lie. So what are some big common misconceptions about Pinterest? You work with lots and lots of people on Pinterest only, so what what are some things you hear?

Rachel: “A lot of people think my business is not going to work on Pinterest or my audience isn’t there. I swear any business can work on Pinterest. Pinterest talks about the platforms are crushing it and it’s so random like pet plan insurance or Stainmaster carpet care, just the most random stuff. I’ve personally seen it work just for like authors or people that are selling CBD or in the fitness space or I’m speaking at a real-estate conference. So teaching about how you can it for real estate. It really it can work for any business! So I have an open mind for everyone!”

I think if you do right it’ll work for you!

Rachel: “A lot of people don’t know pins show up on Google too. So even if you’re like a 100% sure your audience is not on Pinterest…they are! But they’re on Google for sure!”

I’m going share this funny story…so last year my team was looking up like female entrepreneur quotes. We just Googled it and we’re not on Pinterest. We’re looking through some really good female entrepreneur quotes and all of the top ones were Rachel! It was her Pinterest pin with the quote with her name underneath. We’re like what in world! I mean to get the keyword ‘female entrepreneur quotes’ and you’re at top, that’s crazy impressive! That’s why as we were working together, I’m sitting here coaching you and I’m going, I need to be on Pinterest. You convinced me every time we talked that I had to get over there and we’ve had some really great results over the last year. 

Rachel: “Another thing people think is I’m not a blogger. I’m not writer. I’m not creative enough to create pins or something like that. I mean you have a podcast and what I told you to do is take your podcast and transcribe it and put it on your blog. So if you are creating some kind of content, which you should be, maybe Facebook live or YouTube or a podcast, you can still put that on your blog. Just transcribe it or create detailed show notes and if you want to create blog content, awesome. You don’t have to be great writer because I’m not. I barely passed English in high school! As long as you’re trying to be helpful people feel that and you can really have success there.”

Well, that’s the thing. People go to Pinterest because they can search what they’re looking for. So they really are looking for somebody just to answer their question. So if you’re not helpful, if you’re not actually answering questions, you’re not going be successful. When I went Italy this past year, I went on Pinterest to find what to pack to go to Italy. Now what killed me was these people who had amazing blogs, I was obsessed with them, but there was nothing for me to buy. I just couldn’t believe it because I was ready to buy something. So I think you have to have a good combination of great content but then figure out where are you leading them. Now, let’s talk about blogs. I’m coaching somebody right now and it’s not my normal person I coach. She actually has a local brick and mortar where she owns a meat deli. She sells local meat from a farm.

But I loved how she jumped in head first and she said she knew she could create a funnel for this, create packages and reoccurring revenue and she came to me last week and she said I’m creating a blog with recipes and why you should buying local meat. So somebody like her 100% should be on Pinterest! I really want you guys to see a local brick and mortar person selling meat, knows Pinterest is her place.

Rachel: “Yeah, she could just be using keywords about the area that she’s in and when people are looking for that they could find her!”

If somebody doesn’t know where to start with a blog, how many blogs should they be doing? What’s the consistency? What are some things they need do?

Rachel: “Whatever you can do consistently. So as with anything in your business, don’t start and call it like a ‘booty-call’ like you only show up when you want to sell something. Show up consistent. If you can only do once per month, do once month. If you can do twice per month, do twice per month. I recommend you do it every week just so you have a lot of content that you can share. You don’t have to do every single day. I’ve seen people go all in and they do it every day and then they burn out and then stop and then they try to start back up again. So it’s whatever that you can do and be consistent with it.”

I was looking at podcasts the other day and I was searching for a specific niche in a podcast and I would get really excited, I’d open it up and then I’d see they haven’t had an episode in weeks or months. I’m thinking maybe they’re out of business or this didn’t go that well but you lose credibility when you go to a blog that’s from 3 years ago and nothing’s been done.

So what if I’m not a blogger? What if I naturally don’t even know where to start. How do figure that out? 

Rachel: “Just think about where you’re creating content. It’s easy to set up a blog nowadays, it’s so simple! You could hire someone to do it for cheap, or you could do that once you get it set up. Just think how your how are you going create content? What form are you good in do you like audio do like video? Do like written word? As long as you have it and you’re creating and it’s on your blog then you’re good!”

My next question is, what are some mistakes that you see your clients making when they get on Pinterest?

Rachel: “Not using keywords effectively or they’re not niched down enough. I’ll just give the example if you’re in the fitness space and you’re going to try and get your pins seen and you’re using the keyword ‘weight loss’ you’re never going to be found, ever. So pick a very specific niche. Two of my most popular pins are ‘intermittent fasting for women’. Another one is ‘endomorph meal plan.’ It’s eating for your specific body type. So it’s how to eat and an endomorph is one body type. So I created a blog post teaching about that. Another one is ‘keto peanut butter fat bombs’ which if you search it, you’ll find it! You have to be specific.”

What other mistakes besides keywords?

Rachel: “Not being consistent, that would be another one and just showing up when they feel like it. With anything you have to show up and be consistent.”

How long does Pinterest take? You know how you buy something and they say you have to take at least 3 months before you can even really say if it’s working. How long would you tell somebody?

Rachel: “Ideally 90 days, but I’ve had my students have crazy success in 30-60. Especially with hashtags and tailwind and different tools that you can use, it can happen pretty fast.”

Now, we’re big fans of Tailwind and we will be sharing more about them as they are going to be another one our sponsors for our live event this year! But Tailwind is definitely a go to with Pinterest and Instagram for sure.

Rachel: “They’re an amazing company! Their staff is super responsive and the platform is awesome. Highly recommend Tailwind! It makes it so automated.”

That word automated…who doesn’t want automated!? Any other mistakes?

Rachel: “I guess the quality of the pin when maybe it’s dark or they have a ton text on it that’s hard to read or they have no text on it. That’s a big thing. So you want that pin to be, I call it stop the scroll worthy because people are scrolling fast on their phone so you wanted to grab their attention. So that’s a mistake. Keyword stuffing would be another one. Pinterest is a search engine and in their Pinterest descriptions they’re just typing in a bunch of keywords. You need to weave in the words and make it conversational.”

What are the most important things we need to focus on with Pinterest?

Rachel: “It’s a search engine, so keywords.”

How do I find my keywords?

Rachel: “You need to know who your ideal client is. Get in their head for sure.That’s first step. You have to know exactly who it is you’re trying to reach. So get in the head your ideal person and then think what are they searching for? You can actually practice searching Pinterest yourself because Pinterest has that autofill feature, so if I start typing in intermittent fasting, you’ll see a bunch of different keywords pop up that more specific and you could try and use those.”

If someone is thinking, weight loss is going to be one of my keywords and then intermittent fasting is going to be one my keywords, how do they know if it’s too broad or too niche?

Rachel: “When you go to Pinterest I like to do it where it auto fills all the way and there’s no other keyword options. For example, intermittent fasting for women and then you weave in a couple of others and there’s that guided search where there’s tiles there too. I’ll weave in those to make it almost a specific as possible.”

So are you telling me you really can’t be too niched on Pinterest?!

Rachel: “It’s really hard to be! It’s really hard to be niched because especially when I work with people privately and I’m like, oh my goodness this is going to amazing because there’s nobody here. I was working with someone who sells painting and art, she has a brick-and-mortar, and so we’re looking at minimalism art decor and I was like, there’s nobody here! This is wide open, people are searching for it, but nobody is doing it the right way. We had this awesome opportunity to show up and be the only person that’s really doing what I teach here.”

I love that! It’s like you can see that they’re searching for it but there are no people actually serving it. So what are some things that are fluff, that people brag about but you’re like that’s actually not that great?

Rachel: “Monthly viewers. It’s really not telling you how much traffic you actually have or how many people you have in your email list.”

So you want us to be looking at Google to know traffic and then is the email list growing?

Rachel: “Exactly! Those are the most important things because that’s the whole point of using Pinterest, is using that to grow your email list.”

How will I know if my email is growing from Pinterest specifically? Do I have to have specific funnels or am I just tracking Pinterest from Google analytics?

Rachel: “If you wanted to have a separate funnel for it you could. I personally don’t but you could if you really wanted to track all of that stuff. You’ll feel like your traffic is increasing and then I actually asked people when they respond to my emails in my email nurture sequence, I ask them where’d you find me? An people say Pinterest!” 

We do that too, we have a free Facebook group and one of the questions is ‘where did you find us?’ and people say Pinterest, Instagram wherever so we’re tracking where people are coming from! I also think though, I would rather have them on my email list than just in a free Facebook group or on my Instagram following so we really want to convert them. I think in the world of marketing where people are familiar with marketing funnels and they know I’m going to get them to opt-in and put them on their email list with Pinterest…we’re not sending them to an opt-in page, we’re sending them to a blog. Can we talk about that for a minute?

Rachel: “If you’re searching for something on Pinterest and you land on an opt-in, that person’s a complete stranger. Would you give them your email address? Probably not. But if you went to that person’s blog, they added value to you, learn something and then they had a free thing that was related, you’d be way more likely to give them your email, right?”

Yeah. When I go to do a YouTube video and coming up with that content, but in there I’m going to say hey, if you liked #2 on this and you need my plan, go check it out here. So I think you have to really be thinking, no one’s just watching a YouTube about an opt-in page. They have to listen, get excited and go I want to know more.

Rachel: “Exactly! If you do a good job with your content, they’re going to see how can I learn more from this person? I’ve had people find me on Pinterest. They go to my blog and they consume all my content. I had someone sign up to work with me 3 days later as private client and then come to my live event because of everything that I did on Pinterest. You can convert people really quickly if you’re adding that value there.”

So what kind images work well on Pinterest? 

Rachel: “It’s easier than it sounds. You can just literally go to canva.com, use the Pinterest template so you don’t have to figure out the exact dimensions or anything and use that template. The things that work well again, it’s the big bold text that’s on there. It’s on brand, so it’s using your brand colors, your brand fonts. It has a logo so you get that brand recognition on Pinterest. You want to have a really good headline. So we use Advanced Marketing Institute to create headlines for Pins, so it’s getting people excited and wanting to click through. Think about your own personal behavior. What’s going to get you to actually notice a pin? It’s going to be bright or have bold color with the big bold text. Those are the things that are most important.”

We use aminstitute.com/headlines, for every email subject line, every Pinterest pin, before I go live on Facebook. We are making sure the headline is good. I had a client who came to me and her blog headlines were like ‘avocado’. What if you said why you shouldn’t have avocados everyday? All of a sudden you get people to go, wait a minute, you’ve completely intrigued me. I think headlines are so much more important than people really put attention to especially people that go live on Facebook. They just jump on 2 minutes before they’re going to go live and throw something together. So how much time do you think it takes if I said, I’m not doing Pinterest but you kind of convinced me…how long is this going to take to all of a sudden jump in and do every single day? A week?

Rachel: “It depends on how motivated you are. I’ve had one of my clients, he literally binged my course, set up everything in a weekend. He was just hungry, he went and got everything all set up and then it’s literally just the maintenance of creating a pin and making sure your doing it consistently. I would say have 30 minutes-1 hour per month and if you’re using your time well you can have a lot success with just that. So it’s so much lower maintenance than Facebook or Instagram.”

So you guys let’s recap this here, Instagram can be gone in 24 hours, especially stories and lives. You can put something on Pinterest today and somebody 7 years from now could still be getting value from it. That just seems like the place I want spend my time! The question is are you getting the results you really need and want from Instagram? You might be getting followers but are you getting leads? Are you getting sales? Whereas Pinterest is really the proven platform to really scale that! 

If you want to connect more with Rachel be sure to check her out on Instagram, @shesmakinganimpact, on her podcast She’s Making An Impact and in her Facebook group, She’s Making An Impact!