7 Tools for Your Pinterest Toolbox

If you’re not marketing on Pinterest you probably should be. Recent studies have found that Pinterest users purchase more items online than users of any other social networking site. So for the sake of establishing an all-encompassing Internet marketing campaign, here are some tools you can use to get the most out of Pinterest.


Testimonial board

Pinterest has made it possible for you to create a board that your followers pin to. This opens up interactive potential beyond likes, comments and re-pinning. Why not turn your user board into a testimonial board. Encourage your followers to pin pictures of themselves using your product or showing how they spent the money your financial advice earned them.



Infographics are basically a way to present a body of information in an illustrated format. Because image is king on Pinterest, infographics give you a way to present a message visually. It could be the benefits of using your services, the latest research in your industry or a history of your company. For the infographic to be successful, it has to look artistic, so contact your favorite graphic designer instead of trying something on your own.


Event promotion

Event marketing looks different depending on the type of event you host. Create a Pinterest board to promote a seminar, your presence at a trade show or a charity dinner. Some ideas of images you could pin include:

  • an event logo
  • photos of your team planning the event
  • an infographic of the top 10 reasons to attend
  • images of the food that will be served
  • images of the city or venue where the event will take place
  • an invitation
  • headshots of noted guests or speakers who will attend or present


Product launch

Combine the previous tool with this one to build excitement for a new product your company will be releasing. Once it’s released, pin images of the product from a variety of angles, pictures of real people using the product or the various stylistic options available with the product. Put a price on the pin or create an “I saw it on Pinterest” coupon to continue building on the excitement momentum.


The human side of business

Use Pinterest as a way for clients and potential clients to get to know the people that make up your company. Pin any of the following items and let followers get to know your company on a more personal level.

  • photos of office antics
  • silly headshots
  • a video of the production process
  • an interview with a specialist that works for the company
  • pictures of company functions or team building events


Keywords and hash tags

Each pin on Pinterest has a link pointing back to the original. When you pin (or re-pin), use the space provided for a caption to include fitting keywords and hash tags. This helps people find you when they search Pinterest and connects to Twitter searches as well.


Follow the interests of your target market

Using the Pinterest search tool, find members who fit the profile of your target market to follow. Seeing what they pin on their boards will give you an idea of what’s important to them and will help you to connect with them using their interests.


The possibilities for Pinterest are as endless as your creativity, but these tools will get you started.




How to Determine if Your Site Has Been Penalized by Panda or Penguin

Lately we have been getting a lot of emails and phone calls from frantic website owners and even other SEO companies telling us that their sites have all of a sudden lost a lot of rankings and traffic and what can they do about it. Before doing anything, the absolute first step is to determine if your site was penalized, and if it was, if it was penalized due to the Panda update, the Penguin update, or both.

If you have Google Analytics and Google Webmaster tools installed this is an easy step. Login to your account and change the search parameters to be from January 1, 2012 to the present date. Look at the traffic graph and determine which dates you had significant drops in traffic. Then compare those dates with the known Panda and Penguin updates and see if any match up.

Here is a list of the updates:

Panda 3.9 — July 24, 2012
Panda 3.8 — June 25, 2012
Panda 3.7 — June 8, 2012
Penguin 1.1 — May 25, 2012
Panda 3.6 — April 27, 2012
Penguin — April 24, 2012
Panda 3.5 — April 19, 2012
Panda 3.4 — March 23, 2012
Panda 3.3 — February 27, 2012
Panda 3.2 — January 15/18, 2012
Panda 3.1 — November 18, 2011
Panda 2.5.3 on October 19/20th
Panda 2.5.2 on October 13th
Panda 2.5.1 on October 9th
Panda 2.5 — September 28, 2011
Panda Goes Global (2.4) — August 12, 2011
Panda 2.3 — July 22/23, 2011
Panda 2.2 — June 18/21, 2011
Panda 2.1 — May 9, 2011
Panda 2.0 — April 11, 2011
Panda 1.0 on February 24th

If for example, there was a Panda update on February the 27th and your site dropped in traffic on February the 28th you can determine that your site has a Panda penalty.

If however your site has not dropped in traffic on a date that matches with one of the updates, you can breathe easily and know your site has not been penalized… yet. 🙂

The next step is to create a course of action depending on which type of penalty your site has. If your site has a Panda penalty, then the issues with your site are more on site. You need to add new content, eliminate duplicate content, update your title and meta tags, and make your site more authoritative. If your site has a Penguin penalty, it is more complex. You will need to take a look at your backlinks profile and the backlinks profile of the top 10 competitors. The jury is still out on how to overcome a Penguin penalty and even some SEO experts are going as far as to say it is better to just start afresh.

If you would like the team at StartRankingNow.com to take a look at you to help you to determine if your site has a penalty or not, give us a call!

How to Get Ethical Paid High Quality Links!

If you say “paid” links too loudly in a room at a marketing conference you are almost guaranteed to get some of the looks! You know the one’s! Where they look at you with a shocked look on their face because you dared to mention what some to consider a grey or black hat link building strategy in a day where Google has made it clear that their goal is to devalue any type of link building activity under the guise of eliminating spam!

What most fail to admit is that there are plenty of ways to get legitimate paid links. In fact, I just purchased one today. 🙂 And I did it without crossing the line into any grey or black hat strategies! How?

Professional Associations and Memberships.

When you join a professional organization you are asked to pay a yearly fee and as part of your membership you are usually listed in their online members directory… with a link back to your site! This is an easy way to build up some ethical and legitimate high quality links to your site.

Two examples of professional associations are the BBB and the Chamber of Commerce.

Other examples of ethical paid links are sponsorships. For example if someone is having a fundraiser and you promise to support them for $10 per mile they bike… and there is a website listing the donors.. technically that would be a paid link as well.. yet an ethical paid link.

You can find opportunities for sponsorships by searching for “sponsor + 2011” and our keyword or city. You want to search for the word “sponsor” plus an earlier year because you want your sponsorship link to last and if they have left up the links to their sponsors for the previous years, they will most likely leave up the link to your site for years to come as well.

What do you think? Can you think of any other ways to find ethical paid high quality links?

How to get .edu backlinks

As I was reading this awesome blog post by my friends at Portent …

7 Strategies for Getting .edu links

I was reminded of a link building strategy that is quite effective for getting .edu links.

Step 1: Create a discount program that is available only to students or teachers of universities. Most universities are glad to let their students and staff know about an extra free perk for being a part of their university. Your offer can be something like 10% off for all those with a valid student id from a university. If you can come up with a cool and memorable name for your discount program, even better!

Step 2: Create a landing page on your site with the terms and conditions of the discount program. Spell it out how the discount is an educational discount and how students or teachers can accept the offer.

Step 3: Call universities to tell them about your new discount program. After your initial call, be sure to send follow up information to the university by email. Send them the link to the page where the discount is located and provide them with the exact code they will need to link to your page correctly.

That is it! After you have the landing page setup, you can contact different universities in your area and share with them about the promotion.. soon you will have natural .edu links to your site!