How Bloggers Can Use Pinterest to Promote a Cause
Pinterest is the darling of social media right now, but it’s not new to many of us, bloggers. I first started using Pinterest sometime last spring/summer, and have loved watching the site grow. Predictably, with the growth of the site, marketers, nonprofit directors and everyone in between are asking and wondering how they can use Pinterest to reach their target audience.
As bloggers, we can use Pinterest to further our favorite causes. I’m highly active in the congenital heart defect community. CHD is when a baby is born with a heart problem that develops in utero. I brainstormed for a while about how to use Pinterest to a. curate content for the congenital heart defect community and b. raise awareness and motivate people to visit my blog, or other sites, to learn more and take action. If you aren’t on Pinterest yet, this post might be a bit overwhelming.
I started a “hearts” board to rally people in the community. Many people in the CHD community are drawn to everything heart-shaped. I opened the board up to contributors and pin heart-shaped or related items. I imagined it as a mechanism to promote unity, and to express ourselves in a positive way. The hearts are art to us.
Putting a Face to Your Cause
A few weeks before February and heart month started, some fellow CHD bloggers, Ruth at A Trip to Holland (http://atriptoholland.net) and Stefenie from When Life Hands You a Broken Heart put together and executed a genius idea. They started a board called “The Faces of CHD.”Parents and patients could send in pictures, with a link to a blog post telling their story. The board has over 1000 followers. I wondered how many people would want to pin or repin pictures of these children and adults, and was really surprised at the outcome. My daughter’s picture had over 200 repins, and drove thousands of page views to my blog.
I looked through the pins to see if I could figure out what made a pin get repined more often and came up with these common themes:
- Pins with high repins were attractive to more than one audience. My daughter’s picture was also posted on boards marked “cute,” “photography,” and “baby.”
- Professional-quality pictures seemed to do better.
- The shorter the story underneath the photo, the more likely it was to get repined.
There’s much to learn from the “Faces of CHD” awareness project. I think knowing who you’re targeting,making a plan to reach that audience, and doing so in an authentic, non-spammy way are important for every social media platform for causes and nonprofits, but especially so on Pinterest.
How are you as a blogger using Pinterest for your cause?
Kristine Brite McCormick is a Bloganthropy advisory board member. She started using her blog for good after she lost her newborn daughter, Cora, to an undiagnosed heart defect. You can read more about Cora at http://www.corasstory.com. She’s on Pinterest at http://www.pinterest.com/kristinebrite.