by Guest Author, Sherri Browning Erwin
By now, most authors recognize the importance of establishing a presence on Facebook and Twitter to help drive promotions that can lead to sales. But what about Pinterest?
What is Pinterest?
My initial reaction to Pinterest was that I didn’t need another way to waste time. But finding ways to waste time is what I live for when I’m between words, and I joined. At first, I thought it might be a way to gather ideas for current projects. I signed on with my picture and author profile and arranged a few boards, representing various categories or interests, one for recipes, one for fashion, one for recommended books. At best, I thought I could recommend some of my books and books by friends.
Good Thing about Pinterest Number One:
Recommending books by simply posting a picture and short description of book from any bookseller site, no need for hashtags or blatant shout-outs.
Then, I started pinning pictures of pretty historical gowns, gardens, teapots, actors who reminded me of my characters, settings I might use in a novel, on the board I called The Muse. Pinning doesn’t actually take a lot of time because all you need to do is click to link a picture you find on the web with your Pinterest site, select a Board to pin it on, and add a brief (one line) description of the picture. Before long, I noticed that my pictures were being repinned (noticed and pinned by other users to their own boards) and drawing new followers to my Pinterest page.
Good Thing about Pinterest Number Two:
New followers to my Pinterest page means new people looking at my profile, which mentions my website and my books, a good thing. But even better…
After a few days, I noticed that when I pinned something from a website, Pinterest provided a link to the site that I pinned from. AHA. So, if I pinned something interesting from my personal website, it might be repinned by other users with a link to my site attached, encouraging other pinners to perhaps come back to check out my website? Yes indeed. I started a board dedicated to my blog, The Whine Sisters. The Whine Sisters is the blog I share with six bestselling author friends. We take turns blogging on various topics like favorite TV shows, movies, restaurants, writing tips, fashion, life events. I pin a picture from each author blog to the Whine Sisters board and try to keep track of repins, to see how a pin can spread.
Recipes and fashion are most often repinned. Each repin carries that Whine Sisters link with it to the boards of tens and sometimes hundreds (thousands?) of Pinners, Pinners who might just click the link and come over to see what The Whine Sisters are talking about next, and catch a glimpse of the books we’re each currently promoting.
Good Thing about Pinterest Number Three:
I can spread links to my websites and blogs with every picture that originates from my own sites and gets repinned.
After I saw lots of repins from the Whine Sisters board, I added new boards for new promotions of my own, like a Proper Victorian Vampyre Slaying board which features things that relate to my most recent releases, Jane Slayre and Grave Expectations. When possible, I try to post to my personal websites or blogs first and pin from there, so that all repins lead back to me, and to my books. It’s not blatant self-promotion. No need to mention me or my books by name or at all. And yet, I’m posting things that intrigue and lead to repins, and have the potential to bring people back to my own websites, or the book directly at a retail site.
According to website Shareaholic, Pinterest was getting nearly 12 million monthly unique visitors in early 2012, and driving more referral traffic to websites than Google Plus, LinkedIn and YouTube combined. Pinning items of interest on Pinterest can drive traffic right back to you or your books, which makes it effective, fast, and easy promotion.
About Sherri Browning Erwin
Sherri Browning Erwin is an author of contemporary and historical fiction, often with a paranormal twist, most recently known for critically acclaimed “monster classics” Jane Slayre and Grave Expectations.
Find Sherri at her Author Website or