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How to Double Your Email List with Pinterest (A Definitive Guide)

  • List Building

Converting mobile users is becoming more important than ever because people are increasingly using their mobile devices to search for and purchase new things.

Pinterest has grown exponentially in popularity among mobile users and is now the second largest search engine that Google doesn’t own.

Pinterest is a social media platform/search engine where users can upload, save, sort, search for, and manage images and videos. These images or videos are referred to as pins, and they are viewed through collections referred to as boards.

It’s basically an online display board where everyone can post an image or video of anything.

Even though Pinterest is so popular, many marketers forget this huge marketing opportunity and put all their efforts into Facebook or other social channels.

Pinterest is here to stay – and if you want to stay around as well, you should try to explore the many opportunities that lie within Pinterest.

Not only will you increase your brand awareness notably, you can also generate tons of new high-quality leads.

Sounds good right? In this post, I’ll let you in on all the best tips, tricks, and hacks for using Pinterest as your new hunting grounds for email leads. You’ll be surprised how much you can grow your email list and increase revenue with Pinterest.

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Pinterest marketing: How to get started

Pinterest is all about sharing images within different topics, which is why you need to know exactly what topics relate to your business before entering this social media platform.

Determining your niche and your audience is key if you want to attract just the right group of people that are more likely to convert into customers in the long run.

Once these have been established, you can move on to the actual setup of your Pinterest profile.

First, you must fill in your business name and business title. Your title is super important if your business name doesn’t say much about what you do.

A great example is Melyssa Griffin. She uses her own name as her business name which says nothing about what her expertise is or what she can do for you. Thus, she has added a title to her Pinterest name.

The title is simple and shows people know that she’s an entrepreneur and that she shares blogging advice.

Moreover, you need to fill in a description of your business. This can be seen as an extension of your title where you can go into a bit more detail and tell people exactly what it is you do.

A good example is Buffer, who have mastered their description on Pinterest as you can see here:

This description is short and precise letting you know just what Buffer can do for you – manage your social media in one simple tool. However, I do think Buffer should have added a title to their business name as well.

But it doesn’t stop here.

Your description and title must not only be short and precise, they also have to include keywords matching the topics related to your business. Thus, when Pinners (the people of Pinterest) search for specific keywords within your area of expertise, your business will show up in the search results.

In the case of Buffer, these keywords would be global, social media, scheduling, and analytics.

Now, you’re ready to get a lot of visitors to your profile and convert them into leads. So how do you do that?

First of all, I would recommend always having your most effective lead magnet in your description. Have you written an ebook or an awesome guide to something? Then add it to your description just as Melyssa Griffin has done on her Pinterest profile.

It includes a simple CTA: “Want to grow your traffic, subscribers, + income?” – I mean who wouldn’t? And then a link to where you sign up for the course that will teach you how to achieve this.

Lastly, you need to add a profile image. Choose an image that is easily recognizable such as your business logo. Your profile image will look best if you upload it in 165 x 165 pixels.

Now that you’ve gotten your profile ready for lead generation, it’s time to have a look at the other ways in which you collect tons of leads from Pinterest.


  • Include a title in your brand name if your name doesn’t automatically tell people what you do.
  • Use your logo as your profile image to increase brand recognition (165 x 165 pixels work best).
  • Specify how you solve problems for your customers in your description. What is the value of your product?
  • Include your most popular and effective lead magnet in your description along with a convincing CTA.

Your pins

So what are pins?

Pins are the images or videos you share on Pinterest.

You can’t have a business profile on Pinterest without sharing pins and engaging with other people’s pins. Well, you can – but it won’t get you any new leads.

You can create a board for each of the topics you determined earlier on in the process. Let’s say you run an ecommerce with sporting equipment. Then you could have boards with running, climbing, biking, swimming, tennis, football, etc. – you get the drift.

Here’s an example from Jamie Oliver’s Pinterest profile.

He has tons of different boards related to different food topics filled with his own and other people’s pins.

Search for the topics you have on your boards and find awesome pins that are relevant to your boards. Then you can save these pins to your boards so you have a good mix of own pins and saved pins.

Saving other people’s pins makes your business seem less promotional, which in turn will get you a lot more followers and leads – and increase revenue.

But don’t just add a bunch of images of people running to your running board. You need to create value. Find pins that link to running programs, or recipes to boost your energy before a run, etc.

If you create value for people, they will be more susceptible to your occasional offers.

But how many boards and pins should you start with?

For a start, I would recommend creating at least 5 different boards with at least 10 pins in each. You can start out by creating secret boards and then when you think they have enough content and value in each, you can make them public.

If you have a wide target group, you can create different boards that appeal to different audiences.

A great example of an ecommerce store who has this down is The Container Store.

They basically only sell one thing – containers. But they’ve created a ton of different boards packed with different ways to use containers for different situations, making sure that there’s inspiration for everyone no matter what they need a container for.

There’s no limit on how many boards you can create and there are no best practices telling you what is the best number. I will tell you though, that having 50 different boards with only 5-10 pins in each won’t do you much good.

Focus on creating fewer boards but with plenty of valuable pins instead.

So what kind of pins should you upload?

Now, it’s time to create that first lead generating pin that will skyrocket your email list. First, you must decide on your lead magnet.

What do you want to offer people to get them to sign up? This could be an ebook, an email course, a guide, recipes, etc. Your pin should have the same function as a content upgrade – present a bonus within relevant content.

Hubspot has this pin in their board “Helpful marketing ebooks”.

They offer a guide to effective imagery and when you click the image, you’re directed to a landing page where you can download the ebook in exchange for your name and email address.

You can also post pins with images of your newest products and link to the product page, or you can link to blog posts on your site where you convert people through a content upgrade on that page. The possibilities are endless if you just get a little creative.

When you write the description for your pin, you need to focus on the value of your offer. The pins with the highest number of saves are those that are personal and focus on someone’s success and how you can achieve the same too.

Let’s go back to the sporting ecommerce example. In your running board, you could offer a running program with the promise of boosting energy and losing weight. Here you could add a before and after picture of someone who has successfully done the program and gotten great results.

The image, or graphic, of your pin is super important. Pinterest is a very visual media and people will respond much better to a visually stunning image than a great one liner in the description.

Think of it like this: the description is the Robin to your Batman (your image). Batman is the hero but he performs much better with Robin’s help.

People love to see what they’re getting. It doesn’t have to be a picture of someone or something. If you offer guides and ebooks, you should try designing graphics that illustrate the ebook or guide.

Check out this example from The Work at Home Wife:

Notice that the image is designed to look like the cover of an actual book. Illustrating your lead magnet helps people visualize it which makes it seem more real and tangible.

What to do if you’re not a graphic designer?

No worries, these tools will let you create stunning visuals without needing any design knowledge.

  • PicMonkey – A free online photo editor. They also have tons of different templates and backgrounds for you to use.
  • Box Shot King – Here you can upload images and project them onto eBook covers.
  • Placeit – Enables you to insert images, videos, checklists, etc. onto images of computer screens, mobile phones, iPads, etc.

Last but not least…

If your pins aren’t getting as much attention as you hoped, or you have a very popular pin you want to put more emphasis on, you can always repin your own pins. People might not have seen you pin when it was first posted, so repinning it can increase your number of leads significantly.

You can try repinning at different times during the day and at different days, to ensure that you reach a much larger audience.

Another option is to use a pinning automation tool. If you want to stay active on Pinterest but you don’t have the time to keep track of all your activity and post pins all the time, these tools can do the job for you.

They will post pins, repin, and much more based on a number of different settings you decide on.

Here are some of the tools you can use for automated pinning.

  • TailWind – Find and schedule content, actionable analytics and more.
  • BoardBooster – a pin scheduling tool for bloggers. It helps manage Pinterest accounts by automatically spreading new pins over ideal pinning hours.
  • Buffer – Tool to help manage all your social media accounts in one place.


  • Create boards with different topics appealing to different audiences.
  • Start with at least 5 different boards with at least 10 pins in each. Make them secret until you have enough content.
  • Offer a lead magnet in your pins to increase conversions.
  • Include amazing visuals to draw more attention to your pins. Your visuals must be relevant to your lead magnet.
  • Your description must support the purpose of your pin and not sound too promotional.
  • Repinning old pins can increase conversions even more.
  • Use an automated pinning tool to stay active on Pinterest without spending more time there.

Join relevant Pinterest group boards

Posting pins to your own boards is just the beginning of lead generation through Pinterest. Now, you need to find group boards within your niche to which you can share some of your awesome new lead magnet pins.

So how do you find these groups?

First, you can look up similar businesses or competitors and see which groups they belong to.

Another option is to search through a Pinterest group board directory such as PinGroupie to find groups boards you can join.

This is what I found when I searched in the health_fitness category:

Do the same with the topics related to your business and you’ll find plenty of groups to join.

But there’s a catch…

You can’t just click a button and join the group.

But don’t worry. There are two ways you can join a Pinterest group.

One is to email the group board owner directly. If you hover over the “description” button you’ll see the group description and how you can join. If you have to email the group board owner, you need to include your Pinterest profile URL, your website, and the email associated with your Pinterest account.

If the owner accepts you as a member, you’ll get an invite to join the group by email.

Now, to option no. 2.

Other group owners might want you to comment on their most recent pin to request to join their group. Find the most recent pin, click on the comments and write that you would like to join.

Once you’ve joined different group boards, you need to keep in mind not to spam these groups with your lead magnets.

They’ll throw you out of the group just as quickly as you got in. Again, I want to emphasize how important it is that you provide value to the group and engage with them.

Repin their pins, like their posts, and post high-value content without trying to convert them. Then once in awhile you can incentivize your pins with a lead magnet and post it in the group.

It’s all about balancing what you give and what you get.


  • Join group boards and reach a much larger audience.
  • Find group boards through similar businesses or your competitors.
  • Use a Pinterest group board directory such as PinGroupie to find groups boards you can join.
  • Email the group board owner and ask to join. Include your Pinterest profile URL, your website, and the email associated with your Pinterest account in the email so the owner can check you out.
  • Comment on group owner’s last pin and ask to join.
  • Don’t spam. Engage actively with the group and carefully start to promote your offer through value.

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How to create a high-converting landing page

Once people have clicked your lead magnet pin, they’ve taken the first step towards converting but they’re not done yet.

Now comes the most important step: getting them to give you their email address and convert.

The best way to make this choice as simple and easy as possible is to create a specific landing page for a lead magnet.

This landing page should only have one single option which is downloading your lead magnet for the price of an email address.

But that’s not all…

Even though the landing page should only have one option, you should still use other aids to give people that final push that makes them convert.

Since they entered your page through Pinterest, you can only assume that these visitors respond well to images. Thus, your landing page should include images – preferably the same or similar images to the one in your pin that made them click in the first place.

Next is your CTA. The same applies to this as in your pin. What problem can your lead magnet help people solve? Focus on the value of your lead magnet.

Want to know how to write the most effective CTA’s? Check out this post.

Don’t write a long list of why they should sign up. Keep it to a few simple sentences – maybe even a few bullets to make it more readable and clear.

Keep your landing page simple and avoid too many elements that take the attention away from the main purpose. Sometimes it’s a good idea to include testimonials if they support the exact purpose of this landing page. If not – they don’t belong on this page.


  • Have a custom landing page for each of your lead magnets to increase conversions.
  • Only give people one option: sign up.
  • Use visuals on your landing page to increase conversions – You can only assume that Pinterest users are automatically more drawn to visuals than text.
  • Keep it simple – Don’t write a long list of reasons they should download your lead magnet.
  • Include testimonials if they are relevant to your specific lead magnet.

Pinterest advertising

You’ve probably already experimented with Facebook or Google advertising, but did you know that you can advertise on Pinterest as well?

The awesome thing about advertising on Pinterest is that the ads look just like pins. The only difference is that it says “Promoted pin” very discretely at the bottom of the pin.

But even though they look just like regular pins – they aren’t.

With Pinterest ads, you can add keywords and target specific user segments. You can create these segments based on interests, demographics, and search terms.

Targeting specific user segments will keep your ads relevant to your audience and drive more conversions.

But that’s not all…

The look of your ads is just as (if not more) important as with your regular pins. Remember that you actually pay to get your ads seen on Pinterest – thus, you want to ensure that look and do their part.

Here are some of my best tips for creating a Pinterest ad:

  1. Testing: You need to constantly monitor and optimize your Pinterest ads. Test different variations of your ads, such as keywords, images, text, bids, and audience. After a while, you’ll be able to identify which combinations drive the highest number of conversions.
  2. Your CTA: You can’t add a CTA button to your Pinterest ad as you can on Facebook. However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t include one. Include a simple sentence on why people should click your ad and what value it has to them.

But be careful! You can’t put a “salesy” CTA in your image – Pinterest won’t approve of that. For instance, instead of writing “Get our new running program for free here!” you could write “How to become a faster runner in 5 weeks.” See the difference? –  It’s all about how you “sell” it.

  1. Keywords: Use your already established keywords and add them in your targeting options. The more keywords and the more relevant they are to your offer, the higher the quality of your leads will be.
  2. Demographics: Include demographics in your targeting. Even if you have a wide target group, you should create different ads for different demographics. Your conversion strategy for a young audience might not work for an older audience. Test different messages and lead magnets to see what works best for each demographic group.
  3. Images: Use vertical images in your pins – they look much better than horizontal images. They also convert much better to mobile which is super important to consider with all your content in this new mobile-first world.
  4. Links: When you link to your lead magnet landing page, make sure it’s a direct link and not a redirect link. Redirect links won’t be approved by Pinterest because they affect the user experience negatively.
  5. Hashtags: You can include hashtags in all your pins, but I wouldn’t recommend it in your promoted pins. They can make your ad look spammy and they disrupt the message you’re trying to convey, which will decrease the effectiveness of your ad.

Always monitor closely how much you pay for each lead so you don’t end up paying more than you get.

Free Downloadable Bonus

Want More List Building Strategies?

Get access to our free list building toolkit and skyrocket your email list today (includes resources not found in the blog post).

Wrap up

As you can see there are plenty of list building opportunities on Pinterest, and I know that if you use these tips and get a little creative, you’ll see amazing results.

Keep engaged with other users and post continuously to increase conversions. Use different lead magnets to attract different audiences and create stunning visuals to aid the purpose of your pin.

What are your experiences with Pinterest? Have you tried Pinterest ads, or maybe you’ve experimented with lead magnets in your pins? Share your results and help us learn even more about this awesome platform.

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