Just about anyone who is actively blogging knows that social media sharing is the easiest way for content to go viral. In this post, I want to talk about how I was able to increase social sharing by 96% on a blog post with a simple tweak that took under an hour to do.
Earlier this year, I published 101+ Sources of Blog Content Ideas on my blog. Since it was a new blog with not much traffic yet, I decided to use an email outreach campaign to promote the content.
About half way through the campaign, I had my graphic designer create a header image to make the post more appealing and sharable from a design standpoint. The Pinterest sharing on the post quickly jumped from zero shares to 18 and continued to grow even after I stopped promoting it.
The funny thing is that I never even intended to promote the post on Pinterest. Instead, I was focusing on getting links and tweets. As of today, the post has 52 Pinterest shares, which accounts for close to half of all social shares for the post.
Related Resource from B2CWebcast: PR Hacking: How Ideas Spread And What Marketers Need to Know
I know that a lot of bloggers are ignoring Pinterest as a marketing channel right now, but there are a few reasons why you might want to take a closer look. Here are some interesting facts and statistics about Pinterest:
– Pinterest already has a large audience and is growing faster than any other social network, reaching over 10 million unique visitors in just 9 months.
– Pinterest actually takes less time to manage than other social media channels. And you can choose when you want to use it instead of being forced to schedule updates regularly.
– About 70-80% of Pinterest sharing is community driven. Which means that once you post something good up, the Pinterest community will re-pin and share it on their own.
Creating a Header Image
I have my own web design company, so I was able to get my graphic designer to create the header image for my blog post. However, if you don’t want to pay someone to create this image and if you don’t have any design skills, then I have some good news.
There are various free tools that you can use to create your own pinworthy images to promote your content. One easy to use tool is PicMonkey.
What to Include
Here’s what my post header looks like.
For graphic blog post headers, I like to include the following:
1. A nice background and a graphic element – This makes the design look nice.
2. The blog post title – The words will draw people to your site from Pinterest, if it is a topic that they are interested in.
3. The website URL – In case your image is uploaded somewhere else, having the URL in the image is a great way to bring people back to your site.
How to Use PicMonkey
PicMonkey is fairly easy to use, especially since we are just trying to create a simple blog header image. Here are the steps:
1. Get a good image or photo that has some space to add text – Although you can add space above the image, it is easier to just use an image that has extra space where you can add text.
Be sure to either use your own images or public domain images that don’t require attribution.
2. Drag the photo onto the header on the PicMonkey home page when it says “Edit a Photo”. This will allow you to edit it and add the text.
3. Use the buttons on the left menu to add text and other things. You can play around with all the features if you want to see what options are available. You can do some pretty fancy effects with just the push of a button.
4. Save the image to your computer. Once you save the image, you can then upload it to the top of your blog post.
If you decide to add header images to your blog posts, be sure to also add a Pinterest share button to your post. With just a few minutes, you can easily increase social sharing on your posts and it’s actually fun to do!