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4 Steps To Using Pinterest on Purpose

Fact, it’s super easy to lose HOURS of your life to Pinterest when trying to find inspiration for your brand.

To avoid falling into this black hole, I’ve documented my 4 step process on how to make sure your pinning session is productive.

Side note – if you’re not using Pinterest yet, you’re missing out!

Not only is it an amazing free tool to get those creative juices flowing, but it can also be used to drive traffic to your website. There’s a great in-depth article here from Later all about using Pinterest for business.

So if you’re considering having a Blog as part of your website, then it’s a good idea to start getting familiar with Pinterest.

Today, however, I want to focus specifically on using it to kick start your brand building process.

Pinterest For Brand Design

Step 1: Set Your Pinterest Intentions

As with all things, it’s important to understand what you’re trying to achieve before you begin. If you’re gathering imagery for your brand – you need to stay focused on exactly that, your brand.

I know it sounds obvious, but it’s easy to slip into pinning pretty pictures that might not be relevant to the brand you’re trying to create.

For example, you might love yoga and spirituality, but is this appropriate for your brand? Is this something that will appeal to your customer?

If you’re struggling to figure this stuff out, don’t fret! You can check out The Brand Playbook here which is all about nailing down these things together. I promise it will make the whole process a lot easier for you!

Step 2: Focus On One Thing At A Time

To develop your brand, you want to approach it in a very structured way and only focus on one aspect of your visual identity at a time.

I suggest you break it down into the following groups. You may want to create a new board for each group, or you can keep it all on the same board – it’s up to you!

  • EXISTING PHOTOGRAPHY
  • STYLE
  • COLOUR
  • GRAPHICS/PATTERN
  • TYPOGRAPHY

EXISTING PHOTOGRAPHY

If you already have some existing photography which you want to incorporate into your brand, start by uploading these to Pinterest. This will allow you to set a base and visually identify what’s working and what isn’t as you add more pins.

STYLE

Next, you want to focus on a general style. Look for photographs and imagery which represents the feeling you want to create.

For example, are you after a vintage feel? Modern classic? A bit hipster?

Type different terms into the Pinterest search bar and pin to your heart’s content!

Once you’ve done this, go to your board and start to cull images which don’t quite make the grade. You want to keep the images which make your heart flutter with excitement – anything that is a bit ‘meh’ shouldn’t be there.

Here’s a couple of examples to show you what you might be left with:

COLOUR

It might already be obvious from the images you’ve chosen, but now you want to specifically home in on colour combinations. If you type [insert colour] palette into Pinterest I guarantee LOTS of suggestions will come up. You could also get a bit more creative by searching a more descriptive term e.g. Vintage colours

BONUS TIP: Although this isn’t related to Pinterest, I wanted to share another brilliant tool for exploring colour palettes.

If you’ve found an image which you LOVE from Pinterest, and the colours within it feel perfect, you can upload it to Adobe Color.

This will then pick out the key colours, and if you click back over to ‘Color Wheel’ you can then grab the HEX codes.

Adobe Colour Image

GRAPHICS/PATTERN

Here you get a little bit more specific and start identifying the shapes you like, that are appropriate for your brand.

For example, if you want a loose and creative vibe, paint strokes and abstract patterns are the way to go.

Or maybe you want a structured and clean feel, so looking for geometric patterns would be better suited.

TYPOGRAPHY

By this point, the overall feel of your brand should be taking shape. From here, you want to explore font combinations which catch your eye and match the general style. Again, use descriptive words to expand your search.

Tip: Searching for posters, menus or magazine covers can give you a good steer on possible combinations!

STEP 3: REMOVE THE MEDIOCRE PINS

So now you’ve gathered everything – go through and perform a second round of removing pins which don’t hit the mark.

You want to be able to understand your brand at a glance.

There is almost certainly pins which have snuck in which aren’t as appropriate as others, or are doubling up.

Pick your favourites and remove the rest.

STEP 4: ANALYSE YOUR RESULTS

Once you’re left with the key pins, it’s time to go a bit deeper.

What is it about the images that you like? Is it the composition? The ‘attitude’ of the person in the photo?

Your aim here is to take the elements you like and apply them to your own brand – without just copying what someone else has done.

After all, every single business is unique. If you end up just copying someone else, you haven’t worked hard enough to understand what makes you special.

BONUS STEP: CREATE A BRAND BOARD

If you’re feeling ambitious, you can go ahead and create a brand board.

This takes the key elements and brings everything together in one sweep. You can check out my Portfolio for examples of some brand boards if you’re not sure where to start.

(If this feels daunting, don’t forget I offer this as part of my Brand Playbook package!)

I’d love to know how you get on, and feel free to share your Pinterest boards over in our Facebook Group if you want some feedback!

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