It’s a word that we all hate yet have to adapt to throughout life. I hate change, but as a marketer I have to stay on top of any new technologies or updates that are thrown my way. Similar to Twitter and Facebook, Pinterest is finally changing its algorithm to combat the onslaught of spammers and fake accounts. While I do commend them for the effort it has, however, made it extremely difficult for any content produced by new users to be seen. I haven’t written in detail about the changes just yet, so I’m hoping this post gives you new insights into how you should be adjusting your Pinterest marketing campaigns.
The New Popularity Algorithm
I’ll be upfront and honest about this update: the new popularity algorithm Pinterest has implemented absolutely SUCKS. It would be cool if the popular page were filled with content that is a couple hours old or maybe a day, but right now it is pulling in content that is over a YEAR old. What type of user really wants to see content that is that old? I know for certain it no long appeals to me, however, it has created a new pattern in traffic to viral pieces.
Where are before the majority of your traffic came within 24-48 hours I have found quite a pleasant surprise in the new algorithm change. While everyone would love to have 50,000 visitors to your site in 24 hours, it’s now looking more realistically like a 50,000 visitors over 10 days scenario.
It seems now that when you submit to Pinterest you will experience a first day spike in traffic, followed by traffic spikes every 2 days. I think we may have a case of the algorithm limiting how many times a piece can “go popular” in a 24-48 hour time span. While this might seem like a bad thing, I’m actually kind of supportive of the fact that my content has a chance to go viral not once, but multiple times over the duration of the content’s life. Even to this day some of my older pieces are still drawing 4-5K visitors from Pinterest on a daily basis. In other words, the content simply doesn’t hit the front page and die! As the site grows so does the potential of your content.
How does this change your marketing?
It’s no secret, I have several well established Pinterest accounts that I use for testing and submission purposes. However, my submission process has changed since the new algorithm update. First of all, no matter what account, I only submit once every 5 hours. That’s right, I submit only one time in one category, record it in an excel spreadsheet, and go about my business.
Why is this? Because if it’s a good piece of content, submitting it so far apart will ensure that your content isn’t caught in the spam filter and it will make it onto the category pages. A well placed piece of content at the right time will get anywhere from 200-300 repins while it’s up, assuming it’s baller status. I do this throughout the day. Account 1 is slated for 6 AM, Account 2 is 7AM, Account 3 is 8AM, etc. I keep track of when, where, what, and who I submitted to through Excel so I will never get them confused.
After your pins have received the 200-300 repins they will likely stop and become stagnant . . . only to be reborn again at a later time! I call this “seeding the content” and it will result in a much longer life for your instructographic or infographic.
Here is an example that I did recently that is sitting around 30K uniques. While it had its initial spike, it has currently finished up its second spike in traffic. The traffic will continue to do this for the next 3-4 weeks. While it might take more time to reach 100K visitors, it will still happen, no doubt in my mind.
Yes Pinterest has changed and yes it isn’t optimal. However, with some creative planning and meticulous marketing it is still possible to bring in the big numbers.