It’s wedding season – hurrah! But even as you scramble to play your part in someone’s “best day ever,” in the back of your mind is that nagging thought that you should be booking even more weddings.
Take heart, my wedding-professional friends! There is a largely-untapped source of bridal bookings at your very fingertips – and that almost magical source is Pinterest!
I know – many wedding photographers, venue owners, planners, and other wedding professionals have had it up to HERE with the “Pinterest wedding,” in which brides demand a picture-perfect special day on a DIY budget.
But don’t let that prevent you from tapping into the power of Pinterest to work FOR your business! As you have already figured out, brides (and grooms, too!) are using Pinterest to plan their weddings – from engagement photos and invitations to wedding venues and honeymoon spots – the images they save on Pinterest do become plans and sales. So, what’s a wedding professional to do?
How Pinterest Can Help You Book More Weddings
The idea is to become an indispensable part of a couple’s perfect day as early as possible. To do so, you need:
- To be found by couples who can use you.
- To inspire couples with images that fit their notion of a perfect wedding day.
- To get couples to your website from Pinterest and book you.
Here’s how to do it.
1. Make it Easy for People to Know Where You Are Located
In your Pinterest profile, in your board descriptions, and in your Pin descriptions, let people know where you are and what areas you serve so they know they can hire you or use your venue. I know, it seems obvious, but you’d be surprised how often this is overlooked.
You know your customers, so consider how they might be looking for your area. People local to you might search for your town or even a specific neighborhood, while couples looking for a destination wedding at your location may search for something else, like a region or a landmark.
For example: Look at the Pinterest Profile for Granite Ridge in Norway, Maine. The owners know that most of their brides are from “away,” (it’s a Maine thing) and unlikely to look for Norway, Maine; so it was important to include terms like “New England” and “mountains” in the profile description.
To use the same tactic in board titles and descriptions, you might have a board called “Southern Maine Wedding Caterers” where you pin images from the vendors you work with and images of the weddings you have worked on together. But you may also have a board titled, “New England Wedding Traditions” where you post images from your blog and content from other vendors you work with. In the board descriptions, make sure to note where you are located and/or what areas you serve.
Note: it’s perfectly fine to Pin an image to more than one board as long as it’s relevant.
At the individual Pin level you can do the same thing. On some pins, you might mention that the photo was taken at Granite Ridge in Norway Maine. In others, you might refer to it as Southern Maine. When pinning other people’s content, you can change their descriptions as well. For instance, if you’re a photographer and you’re sharing your favorite caterer’s image, you might change the description they originally included to include the fact that the wedding took place on Sebago Lake or at Higgin’s Beach. Give as many clues as possible!
2. Pin Inspiring Images That Get People Back to Your Site
In the excitement to get gorgeous images on Pinterest, it’s easy forget to link them back to a website! Ideally, your images will be included in a relevant and helpful blog post. But, even if you aren’t yet blogging, each and every image should at the very least be linked back to the home page or portfolio page of your website where it’s easy for people to find your contact information. Don’t skip this step assuming people will visit your Pinterest profile to find your website.
General good Pinning practices apply here – quality, portrait-oriented images, motivating captions, inspiring descriptions, and Rich Pins will bring in the most traffic. It is never OK to take someone else’s image and link it to your own site. But you knew that!
3. Consider Promoting your Pins
It can take months for organic Pinning to pay off, and when your business is a local one, you may find your Pins are driving a lot of traffic from people who love your images, but who are not able to use your venue or service. There’s only one way to get around that – Promote your Pins and use location targeting! You can target your Pinterest ads (Promoted Pins) by locations in the US and in several areas in the UK, Canada, Ireland, Australia, and New Zealand.
Obviously then, you’ll just display your Pins to people who are likely to be qualified to buy! That could be your town. It could be your state. Or it could be somewhere else entirely. My friends at Granite Ridge who know that most of their couples come from New York, so they know where to focus their attention – especially when advertising on Pinterest.
Use what you know about your couples who come from specific locations. If you know your New Jersey brides tend to fall in love with the mountain view from the balcony, make sure to capitalize on that in the Pin your Promote to New Jersey Pinners. If your California brides swoon over the fall foliage, feature that in Pins your Promote to them.
4. Learn What Works – And Do More of That!
Which of your board are generating the most repins? Does that group board really have any engagement? Board Insights in Tailwind can show you – and then you can spend your time Pinning where you have the most impact.
Sign up for a free trial now, and you’ll also see which of your 250 most recent Pins is performing best. While you’re in there, schedule a repin – or find similar content to share! Just go to Optimize Content > Pin Inspector.
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Bonus: Collaborate with Your Couples on Pinterest
In your first talks with your bride, you can find out her Pinterest username and see what she’s Pinning to her wedding boards. This will give you a clear idea of what she’s looking for and allow you to communicate in a way that lets her know you share her vision.
Better yet, create a secret group board and Pin some ideas you think she might like. She can then collaborate and you’re on your way to planning the wedding day together! Now you’re using Pinterest, not just as a way to attract potential couples, but to encourage a feeling of partnership and increase your chances of booking the wedding.
What Works in Wedding Pins Right Now
At this point you may be wondering – “What should I be Pinning?” Let’s look first at what’s trending today and how that can help us plan for tomorrow.
Learn from What’s Trending on Pinterest
There is so much content featuring rustic, outdoor weddings and blush colors right now! Really pretty. But three specific trends for this July 2017 really give us insight into how to plan our pins today and going forward. See what’s trending in weddings on Pinterest today.
1. Bridesmaids Gifts
That makes sense! This being wedding season, people are thinking of last minute things they have to do – start pinning these in April/May for best exposure. Pin again and Promote any Pins you have for bridesmaids gifts now.
2. Hydrangea Centerpieces
It is hydrangea season! Keeping in mind that people plan way in advance and that it can take time for new Pins to surface in people’s feeds, think about what will be in season in a few months and pin that! Mind you, we’re not just talking about flowers, we’re talking about general wedding seasonality. So, if in a few months, everything will be fall colors, star pinning that now. If you have some new content to share that is applicable to the season now, consider Promoting it to get more exposure.
3. Elope to Hawaii
OK, so this sounds like a good idea no matter the season! But could it be that as wedding days approach, couples are becoming getting overwhelmed and want to run away? Maybe! Do you have content that could speak to the need for low-stress wedding planning? Pin it a few months before your busiest months and then again during peak times.
Top 10 Pins in the Wedding Category
Since we have over 100K members, I took a look at the most popular Pins in the wedding category in the past year to see what we could learn, both about what is popular now, and what works in general.
These are Pins added to Pinterest in the last year by Tailwind members, and the numbers are for just the individual Pin, not aggregate numbers, which count all pins that go to a particular URL and may be much, much higher.
Something to know about these Pinners and our members in general – they pin an average of 28 times per day. Sound like a lot? Our browser extension makes it quick and easy. Reading a post you’d like to Pin? Hit the extension button and go! Want to share it out to a list of boards at 25-hour intervals? You can do that, too!Tailwind members Pin an average of 28 times per day - it's easy with the browser extension!
Of course, number of repins does not necessarily translate to website traffic or sales, but it is a good indication of what is working on Pinterest in the wedding category. Use your descriptions to encourage a click, and be sure to optimize your website for sales or contacts.
- Repinned 24K times.
- Outdoor rustic is popular.
- Notice the smart use of keywords and location clues.
- Repinned 24K times.
- This is a buyable Pin- people can purchase right from Pinterest.
- A fun little outlier, this one shows us there is definitely a place for humor in our wedding Pins!
- Repinned 27K times.
- Bridal party at an Irish castle has it all – a rustic, outdoor setting, and an envy-inducing romantic dress.
- Several “tried its” which people are actually using as a place to comment rather than to say they’ve been there or purchased the dress.
- Repinned 28K times.
- Multiple images inspire a couple to find a style that fits their vision.
- More outdoor theme – seems to be an all-around good bet.
- It has “tried its” but they’re spammy – people trying to capitalize on the pin’s success, most likely.
- Repinned 29K times.
- This one is all about the image. It has no link and no description – what a missed opportunity!
- Repinned 30K times.
- “Tried its.”
- Notice the Pinner bio – a great use of keywords and location information.
- Repinned 30K times.
- Rustic is HOT – and so is DIY.
- Used multiple images.
- Lots of “tried its.”
- Note that the Pinner only has 340 followers (today, anyway!).
- Repinned 31K times
- Again with multiple images and a DIY message
- Several “tried its.”
- Repinned 45K times.
- It’s an infographic and Pinterest LOVES Infographics.
- Wedding etiquette and help with tough decisions are welcome.
- Several “tried its.”
And finally, the most popular Pin in the wedding category is…
- Repinned 63K times
- Multiple images in one- appeals to a wide audience
- Several “tried its” (Pinterest reviews)
- Good use of keywords in the blog post URL, the description.
Conclusions From the Hottest Wedding Pins on Pinterest
Overall, it looks like outdoor photos do great on Pinterest. See if you can get more of your venue or include more outdoor photography ideas. Include bridal parties in your images. While in general, faces don’t do well in Pinterest images, the wedding category appears to be an exception.
Interesting to note that all these Pins have at least one “tried it” review. While this may just naturally come from being repinned tens of thousands of times, could it be influential in the Pinterest algorithm? Maybe. Encourage your couples to leave reviews, but don’t try to game the system – that never works for long.
Did you notice that one of our top 10 Pins was from a person with only 340 followers! Just goes to show you, the field is wide open – for YOU!
I hope this has given you more than enough inspiration to start making Pinterest work for your wedding business!
Want to join these Tailwind members in Pinterest glory You’re not going to want to spend hours manually Pinning to Pinterest every day and then wondering if it’s working. Get Tailwind, instead! Save time. Measure results. Sign up with Pinterest.
Alisa Meredith is Pinterest Product Specialist at Tailwind — a Pinterest marketing tool, scheduling tool, planning tool and analytics platform. She is a sought-after speaker and teacher on Pinterest and Promoted Pins in particular, having spoken at Social Media Marketing World, Agents of Change and appearing on The Art of Paid Traffic and Social Pros podcasts. Alisa has invested heavily in becoming an expert in her craft – realizing (and loving) the fact that the learning never ends! She lives in coastal North Carolina with her pampered pets Pepe the couch potato Cavapoo, and more cats than she’d like to admit to.