Pretty sure if you’ve spent any amount of time on this blog, you’ll know my love for all things Pinterest. I have my reasons, folks. Truth is, Pinterest has made up to 74% of my traffic some months.
Let that sync in – Seventy. Four. Percent. HUGE, right?!
There’s LOTS that goes into a Pinterest strategy but it’s undeniable that images and graphics are a big, big part of that. Pinterest is all about ’em visuals – you can optimize your profile all your want, pin like crazy, and create pretty darn awesome content, but if your graphics are less-than? It will be an uphill battle to get those repins going! So let’s break it down – how to create Pinterest worthy graphics!
I hear the pain it causes to have vertical images, many which don’t even fit full screen, and how “in-blog” horizontal images just look better. BUT. If you want that Pinterest magic, you NEED to have vertical images. Moreover, you want them to be the right size / dimensions.
Bloggers are always thinking tallest is best in Pinterest. However, the ideal ratio for a Pinterest graphic is 2:3. This means if your graphic is 736px wide (the ideal width), your graphic should be 1104px tall. Buffer found that graphics with a 2:3 ratio actually do 60% better than taller graphics!
Further Reading – What is the best picture size for Pinterest? from Blog Ambitions.
That we’ve got the very basic – sizing! – out of the way, let’s talk about what will capture people’s attention, ’em images!
- Warm colors do better than cool colors. Graphics with red, orange or yellow outperform graphics with blue 2:3
- Images with multiple dominant colors do better than those with one color.
- Crop out that face! Images without a face do 23% better on Pinterest
Now you have three options for making that awesome Pinterest graphic –
Your Own Photography
By all means the best, safest route. You don’t have to worry about copyright issues and you’re sure to stand out in a sea of stock photography. Additionally, as YOU are the one taking the photos, they’ll be sure to match the tone of and perfectly match your content. That being said, it can be time consuming – specially when you’re first starting out – and editing can be a beast!
This guide is from FoodGawker, but their tips and examples are too good not too share. If you follow their tips, you can get to taking amazing, Pinterest worthy photographs in no time.
If you simply do not have time to take your own photos or don’t need to for you blog, you can rely on stock photos. This is the route I use and I’m not alone! Stock photography has come a long ways from the horrible, cheesy, tone-deaf stock photos of the 90’s and early 2000’s. Better yet, we no longer have to pay a pretty penny for them with so many incredible free resources out there.
A word of caution: Avoid Google Images at all cost. Most of those images are copyrighted and can get you in deep, deep trouble.
The obvious down-fall of this solution is that your photograph will not be unique and another blogger is bound to use it. This actually happened to me just last week when Sarah Morgan from XO Sarah and I used the same photo from KaboomPics.
However, you’ll notice they both still look different enough because of the different treatments we each applied to the photo. We each –
- Cropped the photo differently
- Applied a different color gradient to the photo
- Used different fonts, in different layouts
- Used a completely different color scheme throughout
So if you use stock photos, follow some of these same points and make the graphic your own.
Further Reading – Make The Most Out Of Stock Photos by Elle & Company
Your Own Graphic
Last but definitely not least! If you have any sort of design inclination, you can always make your own graphics from scratch! You can use a design software like Adobe Illustrator or Photoshop, or opt for an online one like Canva to create pretty darn awesome graphics. You can use icons, color overlays, gradients, patterns, screenshots, shapes, and borders to create truly one of a kind graphics that are sure to stand out on Pinterest! Two ladies that do an awesome job at this are Kristie from Blog Ambitions and Jamie from Spruce Rd.
Along with taking your own photographs, creating your own graphics gives you full control of the graphic – there’s zero worries about copyright issues and it fits your content and brand 100%!
Make It Consistent
Once you’ve selected your approach – your own photograph, stock photos, or your own graphic element – you need to make sure everything you create for Pinterest (and Twitter and Facebook) is consistent. Consistent keys – with your brand and with each other – is a key step in making your brand memorable. And being memorable on Pinterest is HUGE.
Pinterest is a big sea with millions of new pins created every day, hour, minute. By creating consisten graphics people will begin to notice them and recognize them as yours as they see them over and over again. I cannot tell you how many new blogs I’ve found after seeing their graphics over and over again on Pinterest, curiosity finally winning over, and I clicking over to see what they were all about.
Use A Brand Style Guide
The number one way to keep your brand consistent is by using a brand style guide. A style guide is a document, usually in PDF form, which shows important brand elements such as fonts and colors, icons, patterns, and photo styles that your brand uses.
Using a style guide will not only keep all your visuals consistent but also save you time. No more digging through all your fonts and playing around with colors to see what you’ll be using for your graphics – whether for Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram or your new email campaign.
Further Reading – How to create a style guide for your blog by Regina.
Use A Template
True story: Creating a template for my blog graphics has been life changing. First, I used to create graphics in all sorts of styles with all different colors and fonts. Then I learned better but then I used to spend so much time creating graphics, re-selecting the right fonts, the right colors, making things match as much as I could until one day I said “no more!” Creating graphics went from the most time consuming tasks to the least time consuming one.
The short and sweet? Creating a template will ensure all your graphics are consistent and save you loads of time (and quite possibly your sanity)!
One myth I want to dispel is that just because you’re using a template and using consistent colors and fonts does not mean your graphics will all look the same. You can still create unique graphics for each blog posts and remain consistent with your brand. Let’s look at some A+ examples so you can see what I mean –
Notice how for all the blogs, every single graphics is different from one another yet consistent. They aren’t “boring same old, same old” but if you were to find them out in the wild (aka, Pinterest) you’d be able to tell they’re coming from the same blog.
So now that we’ve talked about what makes a graphic Pinterest worthy – let’s make your graphics, Pinterest worthy!
- Define your brand’s personality – is it feminine, quirky, nerdy, earthy?
- How can you translate the personality into graphics? Think fonts, colors, “feel” of a photo
- Create a template for easy, peasy graphic creation!
Need more help kickstarting your Pinterest?
I know, 100% what is like to know more traffic should be coming to your blog from Pinterest, yet nothing works. If this post helped you, then my free Pinterest email course will help you as well! This free course is 5 days long and will help you lay a strong foundation for a wining Pinterest strategy to grow your blog.