Numbers are everything when you’re marketing yourself online ~ number of followers, engagement rate numbers, number of posts per hour/day/week/whatever. But would you like to know one place where the numbers aren’t really that important at all? Pinterest, that’s where. And even Pinterest itself says so. How about we take a closer look and answer the question: Are followers important on Pinterest?
What Pinterest Says
On the actual Pinterest website, it states:
“Collecting followers has become an important part of how businesses connect with their customers online. But on Pinterest, followers don’t play the same role as they do on other services.”
And I’m going to repeat that last line: followers don’t play the same role as they do on other services.
What I Say
When I first started my UKWordGirl Pinterest account, my blog received clicks via Pins before I even had my first follower.
Think about that for a moment.
I didn’t even have a single follower yet people were clicking on my Pins and reading my blog posts.
You don’t need someone to be a follower to see your Pins, or click on Pins to take a closer look, or click through to land on your blog/website. That’s what keywords (and sometimes hashtags) are for, used in Pin descriptions, board names and descriptions, and even your username.
Helpful blog post: Should You Use Hashtags or Keywords on Pinterest?
People use Pinterest to find something rather than just scroll mindlessly through a chronological timeline. They use it to search for something, just like they would on Google, such as ‘pink bedroom ideas’, ‘Christmas snack recipes’, or ‘summer outfit inspiration’.
The home page of Pinterest’s mobile app doesn’t even take you to people you’re following so you can catch up with their content, it’s showing you content that’s been specifically chosen for you by Pinterest’s algorithm. It even says ‘For you’ at the top, followed by ‘Today’ (top Pins of the day), and ‘Following’ (content from people you’re actually following) after that — in THIRD place.
That should give you some idea of just how important followers really are on Pinterest.
Yes, it’s bloody lovely when folks click on that button and follow you on any social platform. But it doesn’t really make that much of a difference to you if they don’t on Pinterest. They might click to see a closeup of your Pin, and then click through to your blog, and then click to subscribe to your email newsletter because they like what they see. They don’t need to follow you on Pinterest to be kept up-to-date with your newest content. That’s what emails/Twitter/Instagram/Facebook is for.
Why Aren’t Followers Important on Pinterest?
You don’t need followers to be successful on Pinterest — and the numbers prove it. That’s probably the biggest reason behind Pinterest being such a big hit in the marketing and blogging world right now: you don’t need big numbers to make a big impact.
You can have an account with less than a thousand followers and still reach over two million people per month.
You can also have an account with more than 10 thousand followers and only reach 540 thousand people per month.
It doesn’t matter how many followers you have. There’s literally no correlation between number of followers and MUV, or clicks, or any of the other Pinterest metrics.
Followers don’t necessarily convert to clicks on your blog or site, shares of your Pins, or other forms of engagement, such as ‘likes’ or comments.
It doesn’t work on a sliding scale, with more followers equating to more engagement. In actual fact, Pinterest doesn’t really work like a social media or networking platform at all. In many, many ways, Pinterest is more like a search engine than a social platform, and it makes sense to treat it that way.
As a side note, though, I did notice that my follower count went up organically as my monthly unique viewers did … and that was when I stopped caring about the numbers and started having fun creating Pinterest content instead.
The Moral of the Story
If you pay less attention to the numbers of your social media platforms, you’ll have a much better time of things when it comes to creating content. I know the aim of the game is to get as many people to see and interact with your content as possible, but you’ve actually got to enjoy making that content first. If you don’t, you’ll give up on it, find reasons to put off doing it, and won’t ever stick to a schedule, no matter how light that schedule is.
If you get disappointed every time you post content on Pinterest because no one ever seems to see or interact with it, you’re not enjoying the process – because actually sharing Pins and seeing how well (or not) they are received is part of the process.
You need to learn to take the rough with the smooth when it comes to social media marketing. More often than not, you’ll be disappointed and times will be very rough – and that’s definitely going to be the case when you set yourself completely unachievable goals, such as growing by thousands and thousands of followers virtually overnight. (We all do it, including me, so don’t beat yourself up over it.)
Are Followers Important on Pinterest? ~ My Advice
It’s a much smarter idea to ignore the numbers entirely, especially when it comes to how many followers you have; that’s my advice.
Not for forever, just until you’ve nailed the actual strategy and creating content side of things. Once you enjoy it again, you can focus on the numbers, such as learning how to boost them by working on the simple framework of the functional strategy you’ve already created.
I’ve tried a lot of Pinterest strategies over the years, using a range of different niches to experiment with, and there’s one detail that sticks out every single time, with all of them: there is no ‘magic’ solution or strategy when it comes to getting more people to see and interact with your content.
Yes, there are tips and tricks that you can use to boost engagement and impressions, that actually work. I talk about quite a few of them on this blog, and some that I can personally recommend to you are:
But more than anything else, I recommend simply playing around.
Try things and see if they work.
That’s literally all the experts are doing: trying new things, seeing if they work, and telling everyone about them if they do.
Think about how many failed experiments you don’t hear about; all of the techniques and approaches that haven’t worked when trying to use Pinterest or other social media platforms to grow a blog or website.
Don’t sit around stressing about the numbers, especially follower numbers.
On Pinterest, that number simply doesn’t matter.
In short, don’t care about your Pinterest follower number too much. Or at all, in fact.
Concentrating on creating content – and having fun while you do it – will normally lead you creating more of it, in turn increasing your MUV and then followers organically.
Thanks for taking the time to read my blog post today. I hope you found it useful, but if you’re looking for more Pinterest tips, I’d highly recommend taking a peek at one or two of these …