By Donna Shepherd
The social network Pinterest is growing quickly as users post images and links to a virtual pinboard.
The official definition from Pinterest:
“Pinterest lets you organize and share all the beautiful things you find on the web. People use pinboards to plan their weddings, decorate their homes, and organize their favorite recipes. Best of all, you can browse pinboards created by other people. Browsing pinboards is a fun way to discover new things and get inspiration from people who share your interests.”
Here are my top ten tips for writers in particular, although many will apply to anyone learning to use Pinterest.
1. Post your favorite books on your personal Pinterest page by adding images of all the books you love in your life.
You will probably want to have one board devoted to your books and that’s fine, but be sure to have other boards devoted to books and authors you like and different topics that interest you. Avoid giving the impression that your Pinterest profile is being used solely to promote yourself. Be sure to follow the site’s rule: “Pinterest is designed to curate and share things you love. If there is a photo or project you’re proud of, pin away! However, try not to use Pinterest purely as a tool for self-promotion.”
2. Find other writers on Pinterest and follow their examples. Use a board for characters, clothing, research, and scenes.
3. Someone said a Pinterest board is like your high school locker (remember those?) as it is a way to show your readers what interests and inspires you as well as what you’re working on right now.
4. Look for book recommendations or comment on other boards in the Film, Music, & Books Section.
5. Share writing tools, stationery, journals, books and writing-related items in the “Gifts” section.
6. Use #hashtags and keywords. Much like on Twitter, tagging your pins with trending hashtags or keywords will help you find new followers. Searching for other pins and boards using hashtags will also help you find similar brands on Pinterest to follow.
7. Add the Pinterest bookmarklet to your browser’s bookmarks bar. This is a time-saver, because it allows you to easily pin things you find while browsing without going to the Pinterest website first. To get it, visit the rel=nofollow [http://pinterest.com/about/goodies/]Pinterest Goodies page and drag the “Pin It” button to your browser toolbar. Now, when you see something you want to pin, click the bookmarklet and you’ll be prompted to create a new pin. Be sure to scroll to the correct board for each pin.
Another vital tip from Pinterest – “If you notice that a pin is not sourced correctly, leave a comment so the original pinner can update the source. Finding the original source is always preferable to a secondary source such as Google Image Search or a blog entry.”
8. This tip has saved me a lot of time. If you’re pinning an image from a website using the Pinterest bookmarklet, you can highlight some of the text on that page before you hit “Pin It” and the text will automatically show up in the description box. Still edit and add hashtags.
9. You can also tag other Pinterest users by using the @ symbol with their Pinterest user name. You have to be following at least one of their boards. That user will see the pin, and it will link to their Pinterest profile. Use this tip to help promote each other on Pinterest.
10. And finally, cross-post to your Twitter and Facebook accounts. When you pin something to one of your boards, you are given the option of posting to your Twitter account as well. Under your ‘settings,’ click ‘on’ under “Publish Activity to Facebook Timeline.” In this way when you pin, you’re actually posting to three different places at once. Now that’s muti-tasking!
Donna J. Shepherd has hundreds of articles and devotionals to her credit. Her children’s books feature short, playful rhymes and humorous illustrations. Her newest book for children is “Ava’s Secret Tea Party” – available in both paperback and hardcover.
Donna’s devotionals and stories appear in Daily Grace for Women, Anytime Prayers for Everyday Moms, and The Best Grandma in the World to name a few. Her newest release is a ‘hen-lit’ called “Love Under the Bubble Wrap – a novelette.”
For more writing tips, useful links, and updates about Donna’s books, visit her Fan Page at [http://www.facebook.com/donnajshepherd]http://www.facebook.com/donnajshepherd.
Donna’s Pinterest boards, a hodgepodge of recipes, crafts, interesting and funny pictures (Bonus tip – funny pins gets re-pinned more often!), favorite books, and more are at http://www.pinterest.com/donnashepherd