The steps to creating a viral pin from scratch!
I’ve only been blogging for 3 months, and for one month I didn’t even blog!
So, really, I’ve only been blogging for two months since most of my time as a stay-at-home mom is spent…well, mommying.
Smart Mom Ideas is also a new concept for me and I’m still trying to figure out all this blogging thing and my goals for this blog.
But, then it happened.
Suddenly, one of my pins went semi-viral. I don’t mean millions of visitors or anything, but for a blog – that for while was slowly gaining traffic – to get a big spike like that?
My traffic had several little bumps before it went semi-viral.
When the first spike occurred – 67 visitors to 450 visitors in one day – I freaked out!
I couldn’t believe what or why that happened. But, then it happened again and then the big jump. How did that happen?
For the record, that viral post was my 4th post ever and I’m only using Pinterest to promote this post.
I’m still thinking about Twitter and Facebook, but for now, I can handle just using Pinterest. Looking back, I know why that post blew up versus my other posts before that. There was something definitely different.
Here are the three key things I did differently to generate a viral pin.
Step 1: Made a Mega Long Post
I read on other blogs that longer posts do well with social shares and traffic. I really didn’t believe it since I’m not a fan of reading long posts (well I don’t have the time to read long posts).
But, I thought, what the heck? Why not try and see? But, first I needed a topic. I’m all over Pinterest and so I do most of my searches on there and I noticed a key theme going on: pins with high repins are usually about making or saving money.
Well, I know there are other niches that have high repins like beauty and food, but in my niche (mom blogging niche) that’s what I noticed the most.
I dug a little deeper and decided to write a post on different ways to save money since, as a stay-at-home mom, I needed to halt my spending and start saving.
I needed help doing that and I thought my readers or other moms might need that help too.
With that, I just used an old notepad and started writing some lists about saving money and if I was stumped I’d do a bit of research. I was able to come up with 63 ways to save money.
The next part was coming up with a headline. I’ve been researching heavily on headlines and how to create a clickable headline and so I made two different headlines:
- 63 Ways to Live on One Income (And Be a Stay at Home Mom For Good)
- 63 Ways to Live Frugally (Save Money and Make Money)
I wasn’t sure at the time which headline or pin image would perform better so I used the first headline as my feature post and the second one as an alternate pin.
Step 2: Create Gorgeous Pins
I’m still pretty new to creating pin graphics, but I do get a lot of inspiration from looking on Pinterest (and I look a lot!).
Right now I’m doing two pins for each post. Why? Because I can try out different graphics and headlines to see what pinners like.
From my viral post, it seemed like pinners were attracted to the word “frugally” more than anything else. I was thinking that the first headline about living on one income would be the one to get more repins.
But, that wasn’t the case.
Step 3: Pin A Lot
Right now I don’t have any automation tools like Board Booster or Tailwind to do all my pinning. I’m a one-mom show and for the first two months of Smart Mom Ideas, I did sporadic pinning.
One day I would pin 15 times and then three weeks later another 10 times. As soon as I had a plan to pin every day, my traffic started growing.
I also joined a lot of group boards related to my topics – budgeting, parenting, being a mom and have a toddler.
I also joined group boards about blogging or sharing your latest blog post as well. I noticed a lot of mom pinners on group boards and realized that I could also join 🙂
By joining multiple group boards, I was able to pin more often – I’d say around 30 times a day.
I would pin 10 times in the morning, 10 times in the afternoon and 10 times between 8-10 pm.
When my pins were in the group boards, I guess other pinners pinned my pin to even more group boards and it spread. Practically overnight the repin number went from 10 to 100 and then 300 and then 1k and more.
I couldn’t believe it. My other pin associated with that viral post has less than 300 repins.
What I Learned from Having a Viral Pin
I had no idea how long a viral pin lasts. Maybe weeks or months or days. Mine lasted a few days and I was surprised by that. For the next few days over 1k visitors came every day. Now that it’s towards the end of the week, traffic is going down.
For other bloggers, like the bloggers of Avocadu, their viral pin exploded their traffic (and income) and it really went viral!
I’m not sure if my traffic will hold at 1k visitors or go down to 500 (or less) visitors.
But that’s more than the 64 visitors I had in the beginning of the month!
I’m trying not to chase pageviews and waste my time looking at my analytics, but I know how important traffic is to a new blog.
It’s the life and blood for a brand new blog. But, there is balance to it all.
It’s hard to duplicate a viral pin.
I should know! If you look at my latest blog post, I am “trying” to replicate the recipe for my viral pin. While I know the steps behind it, there’s a lot of factors behind creating a viral pin.
Maybe my pin image didn’t attract the right pinners. Who knows?
I can’t believe what just happened! I have another viral pin everyone! Yikes!
From 846 visitors to 2.5k visitors in one day! I have no idea why this post took off on Pinterst?
I feel the topic is the main reason why my pin went viral.
When I sit and think about this (because Smart Mom Ideas is now on my mind all the time), I believe it was the topic that resonated with pinners.
For Avocadu, their viral pin was how to lose weight if you weigh 200 lbs or more. This resonates with half of the population or MORE!
And if you read the post, the advice they give contradicts a lot of what you learned about losing weight, but it’s sound and probably the right advice for people who are overweight.
For my mini-viral pin, getting laid off, losing your job, getting fired or just trying to make ends meet is a huge problem for most of the population.
Can you see where I’m going with this?
Viral pins speak to a LOT of people. Now, I know there are viral pins that are more ostentatious and “weird,” but speaking about Pinterest and the quality of pins and topics there, I feel viral pins are more helpful than reactive to viral-type news.
I didn’t grow my Pinterest followers that much, but BOY did I grow my monthly views!
In the beginning of May, I really didn’t have any views on Pinterest. Once I started pinning more, I was getting around 60k monthly views.
But now? Less than a month of actively pinning on Pinterest and being present on that platform?
I’m shocked by that. I have only 150 or so followers too! My views grow every day and that means more people are seeing my pins and possibly coming to my little ol’ blog 🙂
Right now, I’m at the end of this traffic spike. I’m hoping it sticks close to 1k visitors a day. I want to create more list type posts (as I truly feel those posts are valuable and informational for readers) and monetizing it (once I figure out the right degree of doing that).
Have you had a viral or semi-viral pin? Tell me your story!